Wow. Starting Dec.1, the Federal Trade Commission will require bloggers who review products to disclose whether they were paid by advertisers or if they received the product for free, reports The New York Times and most of the blogosphere.
While I get a few CDs and DVDs in the mail, I only review ones I like; I certainly have not built my website around product reviews. I certainly don’t mind blasting some product out of the air, I just don’t waste my time on below-average products.
And while I can see the logic to the FTC rules, it may pose an interesting problem for book review sites large and small. After all, not even big newspapers pay for book review copies. The sheer number of books makes that impossible.
I don’t know if this ruling will reduce all the clutter out there without a significant enforcement effort – will a team spend all day checking out websites? I guess only time will tell. What do you think?