CMA warning pushes social media stars to be more transparent about their content

CMA warning pushes social media stars to be more transparent about their content

A group of sixteen social media stars has agreed to re-approach how they post content their online.

The group includes singers such as Ellie Goulding and Rita Ora, models Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Alexa Chung, and vlogger Zoella.

This comes after recent warnings from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), which stated how their posts could possibly be violating the law. Not being transparent and open/clear about sponsored posts or ad-related content could lead to serious consequences.

Each of the aforementioned influencers volunteered to change their practices following an investigation by the CMA, but no findings were given about any of the sixteen breaking the law. However, should any of them fail to comply with the agreement reached with the CMA, they could be taken to court and face heavy fines, as well as a prison sentence of up to two years.

Transparency is vital

"Influencers can have a huge impact on what their fans decide to buy. People could, quite rightly, feel misled if what they thought was a recommendation from someone they admired turns out to be a marketing ploy,"  CMA chief executive Andrea Coscelli said, speaking to the BBC.

"You should be able to tell as soon as you look at a post if there is some form of payment or reward involved, so you can decide whether something is really worth spending your hard-earned money on."

Additional warning letters have been sent out to a variety of unidentified celebrities not included in the aforementioned list, urging them to review their social media posts. 

There's a comprehensive rulebook regarding how to approach influencer marketing. Our report on the rules provides an insight into the latest regulations set up by the ASA and CMA.

The full list of celebrities named by the CMA is as follows:

  • Pop star Rita Ora
  • Actress Michelle Keegan
  • Singer Ellie Goulding
  • Writer and model Alexa Chung
  • Designer and model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley
  • Video blogger Zoe 'Zoella' Sugg 
  • The Only Way Is Essex star Mario Falcone 
  • Made In Chelsea star Alexandra 'Binky' Felstead 
  • Geordie Shore star Holly Hagan 
  • Model Iskra Lawrence
  • Made In Chelsea star Camilla 'Milly' Macintosh 
  • Reality TV personality Megan McKenna
  • The Only Way Is Essex star Chloe Sims 
  • Made In Chelsea star Louise Thompson 
  • Fashion video blogger James 'Jim' Chapman 
  • Fashion blogger Dina Torkia

Staff Writer