More than 100 complaints were made last year against bloggers for flouting advertising rules.
The State watchdog has pursued a new zero-tolerance policy in recent months of “naming and shaming” social media stars who do not make it clear when they are paid to advertise a product.
New figures show there were 107 complaints made about bloggers to the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI) in 2018.
The watchdog has issued guidelines bloggers and vloggers to declare their marketing posts so that consumers will not be misled.
The ASAI guidance note for bloggers specifically asks the social media stars to flag marketing content with identifiers of #Ad or #Sp.
Earlier this year, the authority adjudicated on a complaint received from the public over content published on Snapchat for the first time.
While other social media platforms have long-lasting posts, Snapchat is a popular medium among millennials where users can send expiring pictures and videos, or ‘snaps’, directly to friends, or publish as a ‘story’ for all their followers to view.
The advertising watchdog investigated snaps posted by Faces By Grace, a lifestyle and beauty account.
The social media star used three snaps to promote a weight loss challenge through a detox drink called Miss Fit Skinny Tea.
The first snap read: “Its Back!! The Drop a Dress Size Challenge By Miss Fit Skinny Tea starts all over again on January 9th. You in? Drop a Dress Size Challenge.”
The complaint said that the blogger was advertising a detox programme was not clearly identifying that all the posts were sponsored.
Faces By Grace stated that she did use the specific hashtag at the beginning of the promotion to clearly state that it was an advertisement, while Miss Fit Skinny Tea stated that they had no control over what the blogger or anyone else typed or did not type adding the blogger was no longer a brand ambassador.
Instead of upholding the complaint, the ASAI released a statement and no further action was taken.
It also found a blogger in breach of its code in June for promoting a foundation and concealer through the use of filtered and photoshopped images.
Source: Full Feed