We’ve written about non disclosure in blogging before but it seems that some things just aren’t in a hurry to change.
Today CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) pushed out an updated message to bloggers, brands and marketeers to once again remind them that marketing messages, paid editorial and sponsorships should be clearly identifiable as ads.
It really is quite simple.
CAP states, “In the case of bloggers, they should state explicitly if they have been paid to write content on behalf of an advertiser. In short, where there is any doubt about the commercial nature of the message, marketers or those paid to promote products and services on their behalf should err on the side of caution and make clear that the relevant content is an ad. Sites like forums or Facebook have their own rules about advertising content which should be adhered to, but the ASA will still require ads on these platforms to be easily identifiable as such.”
So if you have been paid to write a post, or if you have been sent a product and and been asked to write a review on it in return, you have to disclose that in a way that is clear and obvious to your readers.
Marking a post with a random * is not clear disclosure. A link at the bottom of a post to your disclosure policy is not clear disclosure.
We’ve also written before about ensuring your blog giveaways have legal terms and conditions. These rules are put in place to protect you and the people entering. Third party apps like Rafflecopter now give you a standard set of legal terms and conditions, all you need to do is add in the giveaway specifics, so there really is no excuse for not doing it lawfully.
Do check out the full statement from CAP, bookmark it and refer to it. It’s your responsibility to always disclose your commercial relationships.
This CAP blogger q&a article from earlier this year is also worth bookmarking for future reference.