Monday, April 13, 2009

FTC to Censor Product Reviews?

Consumers post a wealth of personal feedback on all kinds of products online. Most companies view this as a goldmine, often offering free samples or compensation for prominently (and hopefully positive) reviews.

According to this article on ABC's website, bloggers receiving this kind of compensation may become liable for their web content. The underlying issue is that bloggers have tremendous influence on consumer purchasing habits, but consumers have no idea if their opinions have been purchased...which makes them a form of advertising.

There are sure to be more sticky areas concerning online product reviews as communication tools become more and more sophisticated. I hope that smart companies get out there and take advantage of the feedback rather than trying to control it. It's the same gossip passed around at your Grandma's Tupperware party, just proliferated at light speed and with little forgiveness.

Article link here

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