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FTC Speaks on Social Ad Disclosures

Posted on 3.12.2013

The Federal Trade Commission Tuesday released updated guidance for mobile and other online advertisers, explaining how to make disclosures clear and conspicuous to avoid deception.

The FTC’s new Dot Com Disclosures guide (PDF), which was initially released back in 2000 (a far different digital time) has been updated to take into account the expanding use of smartphones, as well as the rise of social media marketing.

Not much has really changed in the document, however, other than to expand the guidance across all known digital mediums and clarify that disclosures should be “as close as possible” to the relevant claim.

Agencies and advertisers should examine the document rather closely though, if only for the confidence that their campaigns are in compliance with the FTC guidelines – particularly the sections on proximity and placement, prominence, the use of “understandable language” as well as how this all applies to multimedia messages.

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