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Girl-Woman-Beauty-Brains-Blog is only for informative purposes. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your doctor for your medical concerns. The authors are not liable for any outcome or damage resulting from information obtained from this site.

Are Bloggers Paid to Write Reviews?

Posted on May 25, 2009 at 8:07AM

Henna, editor over at Canadian Beauty, shares our opinions exactly, and since I'm still sitting in my den with my white terrycloth Regal Beagle-crested robe on and late for a Memorial Day/birthday party, I'm going to share her article with you:  

There’s an interesting article in this week’s Business Week online that talks about the new guidelines coming out by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will require bloggers to state whether they’ve been paid to write reviews.  The FTC hopes that this will ensure that reviews are legitimate and that companies aren’t using blogs just as advertising.

It’s a new attempt to regulate what’s on the Internet, and is a sign that more and more people are beginning to think of blogs as more than just citizen journalism.  The blogs themselves are beginning to replace mainstream media, and the FTC wants to try to have it stay honest.

I think that this is a good idea for many reasons, but I’ll get to that later.

What’s interesting is that the FTC is concerned that bloggers are not honest, whereas there’s no talk about regulating magazines.  Since I work in the realm of beauty and fashion, I’ll stick to media that covers those topics in this discussion.  The dirty (not so secret) truth about magazines is that they get truckloads of products for free, and I don’t think I’ve ever read anything bad about a beauty product in a magazine.  Furthermore, it’s been proven that the more a product is advertised (legitimately) in a magazine, the more it’s mentioned editorially in a magazine.  So why all this concern about regulating blogs when mainstream media has been having the same problem for decades now?  Bringing honesty to media is a more difficult job than just passing a regulation for disclosing advertorials, nevermind the fact that advertorials are usually disclosed on most blogs anyway.

Of course, I need to address the content on this blog as well.  Do I get products for free?  Absolutely.  It would be ludicrous to think that I actually bought all these products, and trust me, the advertising that’s on this blog wouldn’t even cover a week’s worth of what’s talked about on here.

But the thing is that I pick the products I like best and talk about those.  Those are the ones that are most fun to write about, and the ones that I continue using.  The products I don’t like – well, I mostly don’t like them because they’re not very interesting, and unless a product is truly horrible, I probably won’t mention it at all.

Is that the same as being paid cash for writing about a product?  I don’t think so and I don’t think the FDC will either.

What do you think about the article and the whole idea of regulating bloggers?  Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Thanks, Henna.

From the editor's desk:  Okay, maybe I have a few minutes before I unleash myself from my Regal Beagle-crested robe to add a few comments.

As you may have noticed, Girl-Woman-Beauty-Brains-Blog is returning to its roots:  Only reviewing products that we love. We will occasionally run a giveaway or inform you about the top 10 list in Allure, Elle, or Marie Claire, but it will not be the focus of our site.   The focus of the beauty intelligentsia is to give our readers 100 percent honest reviews.  Just so there is no confusion about monetary compensation, we will be removing the ads from our site.  When you click on a Girl-Woman-Beauty-Brains-Blog review, you can trust that it was written with adherence to moral and ethical principles.

In an effort to represent all women, Girl-Woman-Beauty-Brains-Blog has added four new women to the site.  Since every age group has different issues, our contributors include a twentysomething all the way to a sixtysomething.   Please check back in the very near future to meet the new girls that have been added to the beauty intelligentsia.

Okay.  Enough said.  I need to get ready for this party now!

Oh, one more thing:  Thanks to all the brave men and women who have protected and continue to protect our freedoms and our country.



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