To Catch a Blogger (online conversations after new FTC rules)

For some reason, the new FTC rules that will make it necessary to disclose material interests in the
brands that you blog or Tweet about made me think of conversations between hookers and undercover cops (I clearly would not know about this first-hand but do watch a lot of TV).

Anyone who has watched Cops or other similar crime reality shows knows that the trick (no pun intended) is to catch the hooker in the act of offering sex in exchange for money.  So it becomes a game of sorts – the first one to mention the money and the act is the loser (if the cop does this it becomes entrapment; if the hooker does she goes to jail).

When thinking about the new FTC rules, one can anticipate enforcement efforts that will result in conversations like the above.  Except in this case the trick will be to disclose the money and act, while the enforcement officer will only “win” – or make a bust – if this is not done.

Here is a look ahead at how a conversation like this might unfold on Twitter:

@Flogster     Damn, my dogs are tired!

@CoolDude   Yea, my feet are sore too – I really need some new shoes.

@Flogster     Well, it may not be new shoes you need after all.  Have you seen those Gellin’ commercials about Dr. Scholls insoles?

@CoolDude   Yea, wait a second, are you recommending that I buy those?

@Flogster      Not at all! Just thinking about how comfortable they are on my feet!

@CoolDude   That sounds a lot like an endorsement…

@Flogster      Well, to be in compliance with code FTC 16 CFR Part 255 I do need to inform you…

@CoolDude    Not listening, can’t hear you, LA LA LA LA LA LA LA YER BUSTED!!

It also made me think that federal enforcement of online crime might be better focused in other areas, such as the real predators and scammers.

Note: The information featured in this blog includes views that are opinions of the blogger.  No material compensation was received from Dr. Scholls or any other commercial entity in exchange for inclusion in the post.

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