Impersonating a Consumer Criminalized in UK

Your Message HereWord-of-mouth marketing, including blogging and using “brand ambassadors,” will face legal restrictions in the UK starting May 26, when seeding positive messages online without making the origin of the message clear becomes a criminal offense.

Specific penalties haven’t been spelled out, so it will likely take a test case, reported to the Office of Fair Trading to be prosecuted, to make clear the size of the penalty and whether jail time is really in the cards.

Similar deceptive practices, also called astroturfing and flogging, were criminalized elsewhere in the EU on January 1, 2008.  And yes, for the record, none of this blog’s contributors are paid to post; it’s just this fun thing we do.  Thanks for reading!

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