16th August 2023

The first summer show started with the developments in France, with new legislation being introduced to crack down on Influencers, to bring online personalities under the same advertising rules as traditional media which will result in a major crackdown on undeclared advertising and fraud, penalties of up to 300 K, fines and up to 2 years imprisonment being introduced. Seamus Gunn made the point that there was an estimated 150,000 Influencers in France, some with Millions of subscribers who would now have to make it clear in their poster blog that they were in fact advertising, or in a commercial arrangement with a view to promoting a product.

The further development of restricting influencers to prohibit promotion of cosmetic surgery and tobacco was welcomed, also with restrictions on promoting sports betting and lottery games. Seamus Gunn was of the view that a more uniform approach would be needed in the EU in general to hold Influencers more accountable. He made the parallel comparison to the Irish Jurisdiction where the Consumer Protection Commission recently published a report with a finding that failing to label adds was widespread within the industry with up to 48% not being identified as advertisements. This type of statistic shows that Ireland is not functioning to the level that the French would have it which is likely to be the subject of further review and debate in the ever-evolving Social Media Blogging world. 

Everything from wildlife to property matters was touched upon in the Q&A that followed, which may be of interest and can be listened to below.