Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Outsourced Program Manager Angel Djambazov's Avatar
    Join Date
    November 8th, 2005
    Posts
    1,019
    FTC Word-Of-Mouth Ruling
    Hi Folks,

    Haven't seen a discussion about this yet on ABW so I figured one should start.

    According to the Washington Post "The Federal Trade Commission yesterday said that companies engaging in word-of-mouth marketing, in which people are compensated to promote products to their peers, must disclose those relationships."

    Where it seems to have the most potential impact to the affiliate industry is in product "recommendations" that are in reviews or blogs where the person/company recommending the product is also being compinsated for it. I am not sure how much actual teetch the decision will hold, I think proving consumer harm in court might be difficult, however it probably will impact many of the T&Cs out there.

    Thoughts?
    Angel Djambazov
    Managing Edtior ReveNews
    OPM for Keen Shoes and Graphicly.com

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Nunya, Business
    Posts
    23,684
    My 4th copy and paste

    "The only people that should worry about the FTC getting involved in anything are those up to no good. So thatís not a deal at all to most. As far as disclosure. Not a big deal either. Most affiliate sites are pretty self explanatory. If anything you might have to disclose on some Terms Of Use page on your site that nobody reads that you get compensated when sales are made off your links. Iíve had that for years and again for those that donít and if the FTC says you must disclose. A few minutes of work adding it in. So when I read this, itís just business as usual."

    So this isn't a big deal at all to me.

    "Where it seems to have the most potential impact to the affiliate industry is in product "recommendations" that are in reviews or blogs where the person/company recommending the product is also being compinsated for it."

    Maybe there. But that would be hard to enforce because I think it's very hard to tell if a review is paid for or not.

  3. #3
    Troll Killer and best Snooper!
    I decide when the pigs fly!
    Rhea's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    New York, USA
    Posts
    6,195
    Is it enforceable? (That's a hypothetical question.)

  4. #4
    MasterMike HardwareGeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    3,810
    If someone complains to the FTC about you're site they are required by law to investigate and enforce the rules.

    But will they search for people on their own? Probably not but maybe a State Attorney General after the Governers Chair may try to hurt affiliate sites to get press.


    I think from now on when I do reviews on my site, or a company pays me to visit them I must disclose that in my reviews, atleast that is what I am understanding.

  5. #5
    15 years and counting
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    6,121
    For me, it's more like a few frustrated bloggers are trying to get in trouble others like pay to blog people. Just personal vendetta.
    I agree with Trust.
    I'll like to see the FTC involved with more serious problems. And I know a few re: Affiliate Marketing.

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager Alan Hamilton's Avatar
    Join Date
    March 13th, 2006
    Location
    Colorado / Florida
    Posts
    4,411
    Good observations Trust. Fact is, most people do not read much - so if a compensated recommendation is involved it does no harm to put it into T&C disclosures. I think that by in large, most people would not resent that someone is compensated for a referral or referral that turns into a sale.

    I can imagine Google and the other SE's printing a disclaimer on ppc search that "Google is compensated for referrals (clicks).
    Join the Spicy Aprons Affiliate program on ShareASale Visit us on Facebook www.facebook.com/spicyaprons Follow us on Twitter @Spicyaprons

  7. #7
    ABW Veteran Mr. Sal's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    6,795
    Smile FTC Word-Of-Mouth Ruling
    , But I can't resist.


    When I saw the title "FTC Word-Of-Mouth Ruling", I didn't thought about the "The Federal Trade Commission"

    Since I was working all day and afternoon on a few datafeeds, and some of the Geno datafeeds were on my mind today, when I saw the title of this thread, I thought that Geno had come out with an another genius contest, because the first thing that crossed my mind before I opened this thread was just the FTC program.

    I thought this thread was about a Fun To Collect program new idea, so I can only blame Geno and my new {",'-} PHP toy, for making me make this post.




    ...

  8. #8
    Internet Cowboy
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Posts
    4,662
    It's on all of my sites. Clearly states that we get a referral payment for transactions resulting from using our links.
    Hopefully this is aimed at letting consumers know that someone is making lots of money from the persistent popups and adware they have on their computer. Every time I get into a discussion with someone who has adware on their computer and has no idea how it got there and explain to them that they were most likely tricked or forced into installing it, they are furious 100% of the time. That is always followed by "Well, do you use that to make money?" or something of the sort.
    Hopefully this is aimed at parasites. They are illegitimizing a very legitimate industry.

  9. #9
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Winter Park, FL
    Posts
    6,930
    Quote Originally Posted by ALH - AmeritrustRx
    Fact is, most people do not read much
    Nor do they have a grasp on the realities of business, and the laws involved, in general - here's some statistics from a recent survey conducted by the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg Public Policy Center:

    +Seventy-five percent of respondents wrongly believe that if a Web site has a privacy policy, it will not share their information with third parties.

    +Almost half of respondents (49 percent) can't identify "phishing" scam e-mail messages, which information thieves dress up to look like they came from a legitimate company, such as a bank or store, to lure users to enter sensitive information. Requested information might include Social Security numbers, passwords and bank account numbers.

    +Sixty-two percent of respondents don't know that an online store can simultaneously charge different prices for the same item based on information it has on different shoppers, a practice that can make users victims of what study authors call "price discrimination."

    +66% could not name any one of the three main US credit reporting agencies.

    +68% didn't know the right answer (false) to this question -- By law, a site such as Expedia or Orbitz that compares prices on different airlines must include the lowest airline prices.

    ~~~~References~~~~
    full report:
    http://www.annenbergpublicpolicycent...110/Report.pdf

    an article about the report:
    http://www.itworld.com/Man/2693/050601onlinerisk/
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The full report is a must read for affiliates, in my opinion. It's got fascinating stats the pertain to our business and references many other reports.

    Here's an excerpt that discusses the gap between an average person's guess at the abilities behind personally identifiable data and the reality of it:
    Adding to the problem of incomplete information is the challenge of grasping the abilities of technologists to take seemingly innocuous items of information and link them in new, unexpected ways. For example, when asked, "Imagine that somebody does not know you but knows your date of birth, sex, and zip code. What do you think the probability is that this person can uniquely identify you based on those data?," 68.6% answered that the probability was 50% or less (and 45.5% of respondents believed that probability to be less than 25%). According to Carnegie Mellon University researcher Latanya Sweeney, however, 87% of the US population may be uniquely identified personally through a 5-digit zip code, birth date, and sex.

  10. #10
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Location
    Winter Park, FL
    Posts
    6,930
    +68% didn't know the right answer (false) to this question -- By law, a site such as Expedia or Orbitz that compares prices on different airlines must include the lowest airline prices.
    I was surprised at this stat... it means to me most people assume a price comparison engine is LEGALLY COMPELLED to show them the lowest price for what they're looking at...

  11. #11
    Affiliate Manager MINDsprinter's Avatar
    Join Date
    August 18th, 2006
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    1,436
    Wow, those are quite the statistics...

    The FTC ruling to me seems to cover viral marketing pretty exclusively, so we'll know where those crappy "viral" youtube videos are coming from.
    Jason Rosenbaum
    Affiliate Manager
    MINDsprinting

  12. Newsletter Signup

+ Reply to Thread

Similar Threads

  1. Put your foot in your mouth? See the DR.
    By Haiko de Poel, Jr. in forum Virtual Family and Off-Topic
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: April 3rd, 2008, 06:53 AM
  2. I knew I should have kept my big mouth shut....
    By netsu in forum Commission Junction - CJ
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: March 26th, 2004, 12:40 AM
  3. Big mouth strikes again
    By moneychaser in forum Midnight Cafe'
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: April 22nd, 2003, 09:10 PM
  4. Offline word of mouth affiliate program?
    By jc101 in forum Building Traffic, Newsletters & Advertising
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: February 25th, 2003, 11:58 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •