FTC Commissioner Proposes Making Endorsement Guides Into Rules, Seeking Stiffer Penalties
At least one FTC commissioner seems convinced that the agency’s Enforcement Guides are ripe for an update to address unscrupulous influencer marketing practices. Democrat Rohit Chopra proposes their codification into formal rules that would make violators liable for civil penalties and damages.
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The bipartisan SHOP SAFE Act of 2020 would require e-commerce platforms to vet and obtain compliance commitments from third-party sellers, include their identities and business information on-site, and block continued access by repeat trademark infringers. The US House bill is backed by the Personal Care Products Council, which cites weaknesses in the current system that allow illicit trade to flourish.
Brands unfairly attacked by powerful influencers could raise the subject with the US Federal Trade Commission, which is asking for comments on its “Endorsement Guides."