Middle Aged Beauty Queen

New FTC Guidelines for Bloggers, YT’ers and Twitter

Posted on: March 24, 2013

This week there has been a lot of talk about the new FTC Guidelines recently released. The guidelines basically say that anyone writing a blog, making a You Tube video or posting on Twitter their recommendation of a product needs to be fully and accurately disclosed if the item was provided by the company for free.
While I receive very few items from companies, I always disclose that fact when writing a post or in a video. But as a result of these new guidelines, it will be the first line of my blog or video. I do not have a problem with that. As you all know I have a pretty specific point of view with my blog and that is nail polish. Once in while I will write about a make up product I am liking, but as you all know it’s usually nail polish.
The issue I have with this topic is not only the “big” You Tubers, and we all know who I’m talking about but I also take issue with the companies that provide the product to these people, knowing they have a huge audience. I have emailed a couple of these companies and they always say they do not look at specific numbers when providing items for review. With that comment, I say bullshit. I find it interesting that there are 2 particular You Tubers who receive full collections of a certain brand of polish, but yet if you watch their videos neither one of them wear nail polish on a regular basis. So why would this company provide their full and complete collections if they aren’t looking at numbers?
One of these persons, in particular at one point said in a video Brand Z was not her favorite brand. A month or so later she, along with her dogs, opened a package she had received and it was the full collection of this brands latest issues. Suddenly Brand Z is her favorite polish. Maybe she uses it on her dogs because the videos I’ve watched of hers, she doesn’t wear nail polish?
The other person who regularly receives full collections of Brand Z, rarely wears nail polish. On the rare occasion she does have on a nail polish, in the comments someone will always ask what’s on her nails and it has yet been a Brand Z that she actually wears.
The other thing I came across one day while on Twitter, one of these big YT’ers made a comment about Brand U having some new eyeshadow palettes, within 3 minutes of her making that comment Brand U tweeted to her that all the new palettes were on the way to her. So when this person tweets how much she adores Brand U is it because she actually uses the products or is it because they have provided her with a full line of products that she can sell on eBay or maybe give away to family members? All I know is when this person makes any sort of statement regarding this brand I pay no mind to it. I do not trust her opinion much on anything. The same is true for the ones mentioned above concerning Brand Z.
Because of the personal interactions I’ve had with Brand Z I can assure you they will no longer be featured on my blog. I believe the companies have a certain responsibility in looking at who they are providing with free items and for a company to completely ignore what has been happening the past week after the new FTC guidelines were issued, to me is irresponsible. I do not want to do business with such a company. And for the record, I have bought and paid for with my own money a lot of this polish.
This is not because I am jealous of them receiving anything, because I’m not. I am subbed to a couple of these people because i like them. For me it is about the fact that after so much of these “opinions from people who don’t actually use” a product being raves, I do not trust what they say and I have to question the company also. The same for the eyeshadow being sent to this person, don’t the companies realize that normal people do not have any trust in what she has to say regarding these products? If she actually ever did a video about a product she bought and paid for with her own money I would be more apt to listen to what she had to say. That goes for all the people I have mentioned.
The companies, in my opinion would be better off and actually sell more products if they looked at the middle of the road YT’ers and bloggers. I honestly believe the companies need to step up to the plate in light of the new FTC guidelines and make sure the people they are providing with free products are actually using their products and giving honest reviews of them. At some point you would think someone who works at these companies and the PR firms would actually watch the videos of the people they provide product to, or maybe might even think geez she has received hundreds of dollars, or maybe even thousands in the past 2-3 years, are we getting a return on this? My guess would be no.
This is not just a problem for US social media outlets. I see this happening with UK YT’ers. Two of my favorites make great videos but then when you look at the list of what they are wearing you see * after about half the items they rave about in the video. The * denotes the product was provided to them for review. So again, how much can one trust what they say when the disclosure of free items is barely noticeable? Are they trying to skim over that fact? Another one of my favorite people to watch on YT made a video regarding how much she was over the whole subscription box thing, done with all of them, etc…. Then Glossybox US sent free boxes out to the bigger YT’ers and now all of a sudden she is back in love again. She has virtually stopped making videos and a new one popped up the other day, but then in the fine print was the “disclosure” of an item provided to her. I say why even bother, she obviously does not want to make videos anymore but because she still has a ton of subscribers she is sent products from companies. But, oh wait, these companies don’t look at the numbers of subs these people have. Really? Bullshit!

What do you think of all this? Do you think the responsibility lies solely with the blogger/YT’er or do you think the companies also have some responsibility? I’d love to know what you think. Let me know in the comments below.

💅 As always, thanks for stopping by

10 Responses to "New FTC Guidelines for Bloggers, YT’ers and Twitter"

Girl…don’t even get me started! ☺Obviously, I don’t make videos and I don’t have a blog, but I thought that on YouTube in particular, that the YT’er was always supposed to disclose whether the products were sent to them. I dunno….anyway, with the exception of Wayne Goss, I don’t really watch the “big” YouTubers. Wayne seems to keep it real, so that’s why I subscribe to his channel. I will say that it annoys me to no end when someone I enjoy watching is constantly pimping products! As a matter of fact, someone I currently watch has been pimping products from all kinds of folks and if it doesn’t stop, I will be hitting that Unsubcribe button! I guess I’m kinda choosy about who I watch and more importantly, who I subscribe to on YouTube because my time is important! Just kidding (kinda)…but I’ve never been one to follow the crowd or go ga-ga over the latest makeup “thing”. When it comes down to it, I’m just not interested in being in with the “in” crowd! lol. And I’m with ya on calling *bullshit* that the companies don’t pay attention to the numbers. I mean…who are they kidding? Isn’t that what they’re all about?! ♥

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Thanks for the comment Lu. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who feels this way about the “hawking” of products and the companies. I’m embarrassed for the nail polish companies that send polish to these people that don’t even wear it. You know how I feel about my polish! Ha! I hope you have a great week, and btw, I love Wayne too, he does keep it real. Xoxox

Sent from my iPad

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It’s like you were reading my mind. There is a certain “big” YTber who’s channel isn’t even about makeup. She throws in a look of the month every now and then but, has said many times that she doesn’t know much about makeup and just started wearing it. But, because she has tons of subscribers, a certain company sent her a giant box of all their new products. Now to me when a company sends a YTber a box like that the person should reveiw the products, especially when they open it on camera for all their veiwers to see. But this YTber being a bit naive opens the box and says what a nice gift and then never reveiws a things. But, every once in a while she will throw in the comment, “those new shadows are great!”. Now why would I believe her when she has stated she doesn’t know much about makeup?? And then there is another YTber who is becoming big. Companies send you free things all the time but, if you watch her videos she doesn’t even know how to describe things and is constantly wrong with her statements about makeup & other beauty related things. It’s all about the numbers of subscribers with these companies not if the person knows what they are talking about! So, yes, I totally agree with you. Companies need to look the actual videos and maybe comments of how the YTber has been helpful to their subbies. I don’t understand. GREAT blog!

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Thanks Debbie, this was a GreAT comment! And not just because you agree with me but you said it so well! I hope you have a great, health filled week! Xoxox

Sent from my iPad

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Of course they look at the numbers. it is pretty simple, let’s say posting an online ad costs X $ and for X $ they are guaranteed that 1000 people will view it. If they send a product valued at X $ to a blogger / vlogger they will want 1000 views too. Companies are aware that not 1000 people will trust the opinion, but they want their name out there. In my opinion, brands can gain huge brand awareness from YT/blogs etc. that will eventually transform in sales. As the “trace” gets lost, sales is not their target, their first goal is to get their name out there to as many people as possible, as quickly as possible. I don’t mind the big name bloggers / vloggers receiving free products, good for them. I don’t even mind if they rave and don’t discole it is a free sample. You can always tell. In addition to that, everyone should be aware that different products word different on different people. So you may honestly love something, but if it it doesn’t work for me, does it mean you duped me? 🙂

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I used to watch a yt’er and then she showed off her makeup collection…which had to include at least $10,000 worth of unopened Benefit products. I figured nothing authentic would be coming out of her mouth ever again.

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Thanks for your comment. That’s my point exactly, I think the companies should take some responsibility in this. Why send one person so much? There’s no way they can actually use that? Anyway, I’m glad to read your comment and appreciate your point of view” Xoxo

Sent from my iPad

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Yeah! I want a Loreal box with a iPad!!!

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Ha! Me too! 😉

Sent from my iPad

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I’m at that age where I don’t buy something just because someone else has it, but I do look online for reviews of items before I buy, especially if they are expensive. And I do feel duped when someone says how great something is only to find out later they have received that particular item for free, along with a lot more free items. But of course it is ultimately my decision and I would never blame anyone but myself for a bad purchase. I’m just saying one has to be careful about certain people’s opinions of products. I think you give great reviews along with Indie at GirlieReview. Actually right now I’m pretty much full of any makeup and not looking or needing any more, but nail polish, that’s a whole other story! Ha! Thanks Diana.

Sent from my iPad

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