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The FTC has recently made some changes regarding advertising. It requires a greater degree of truth in advertising, as well as greater transparency when financial gain, sponsorship or samples are accepted by bloggers.
Personally… I am thrilled with the updated rules. When I first launched Raging Rouge, I was disgusted by the many thinly-veiled “blogs” that were really nothing more than glorified advertisements, written by company insiders or consultants. The posts these individuals passed off as “reviews” are clearly biased and misleading.
Of course, I am disappointed (though not really surprised) the same high standards are not required of traditional print media. It is generally understood that some editorial staff at fashion/beauty magazines not only accept free samples for purposes of review, but “gifts” that have basically nothing to do with the product at all. It’s one thing for a writer to accept samples of products they intend to write about, and yet another to accept a bribe. I can’t understand why the FTC is concerned about weak ethics in blogging, but has completely overlooked ethics issues in the mainstream media. Puzzling and disturbing.
But, I digress. My point is, the author of Raging Rouge is completely unencumbered by professional obligations to clients or brands. I work for myself, by myself, and set my own schedule. That being said, I am now obligated to let you know that I do, absolutely, positively accept free samples. The truth is, I not only accept free samples, but encourage them! Without freebies from beauty brands big and small, I couldn’t possibly have the breadth of knowledge or the depth of content that I have managed to amass today! Receipt of a sample in no way guarantees placement on the Raging Rouge website. I generally write about the products I find fun or exceptional, and products that inspire me. Now and then, if I use a product that really stinks… I speak up about that too! Mediocrity need not apply, and I am not one to hold my tongue!
Raging Rouge also runs advertisements of various kinds. Banner ads (located in the sidebars of my site), are fairly obvious. Some advertisers pay for placement on a month-to-month basis, while others are affiliate rev-share agreements (for more information about my affiliations, click here). Any text in my sidebar may also be either paid placement, links to my own content, or affiliate links. Text or content listed beneath the designation, or otherwise tagged “preferred placement” or “brought to you by” is paid for. NONE of my reviews are paid for in any way, or are influenced in any way.
To comply with the updated FTC regulations, I will be disclosing fully at the end of each post when the subject of my post was received as a sample. I also will backfill this information to the best of my recollection and in as timely a manner as possible. My opinions are always truthful, but they are my opinions only. Others may experience different results or have different experiences with the same products. I can in no way guarantee results or effectiveness. Click HERE to read my full disclaimer.