Australian influencers no longer permitted to front government campaigns

Australian influencers no longer permitted to front government campaigns

Influencers in Australia are no longer allowed to participate in government campaigns, following the discovery that some creators affiliated with the government were also promoting inappropriate content.

The Australian Defence Force spent a hefty £30,000 to have YouTube gaming personalities Alen 'Champ' Catak andd Elliot Watkins promote the service to teenagers online.

However, an investigation sparked by health minister Greg Hunt uncovered Catak was found to be pushing alcohol brands and dieting pills on his channel. He was also found cracking inappropriate jokes concerning rape and homophobia on social media.

Additionally, Instagram influencers featured in a goverment-led healthy livestyle campaign were also found to be promoting "performance enhancing" drugs and supplements. 

Vetting process

The goverment has been under watchful eyes for a while. In the past 18 months, the Health Department has allegedly dropped a huge £350,000 on influencer marketing.

"The government has recently reviewed the use of social media influencers and determined that they will not be used in future campaigns," assistant minister for finance David Coleman told Sydney tabloid The Daily Telegraph.

Actions like this reaffirm the importance of background checking - as well as actually researching an influencer and their content before spending copious amounts of money on their services.

While it'd be impossible to watch every single video in a short space of time, a cursory glance to get a sense of an influencer's personality is sometimes all it takes. 


Danielle Partis is editor of and former editor of She was named Journalist of the Year at the MCV Women in Games Awards 2019, as well as in the MCV 30 under 30 2020. Prior to Steel Media, she wrote about music and games at Team Rock.


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