Recent findings from the European Union (EU) unveil a concerning lack of transparency regarding the disclosure of commercial content by influencers.

In a joint effort, the European Commission and consumer protection authorities from 22 Member States, along with Norway and Iceland, recently conducted a comprehensive investigation into the practices of online influencers.

The investigation, termed a "sweep," scrutinised social media posts from 576 influencers across major platforms. Shockingly, 97% of these influencers were found to be posting commercial content, yet only a mere 20% consistently disclosed that their content was, in fact, advertising. 

The objective of the sweep was to ensure compliance with EU consumer law and influencer marketing, which mandates influencers to transparently disclose their advertising activities.

The key findings

The investigation found that 78% of influencers engaging in commercial activity were identified, but only 36% were officially registered as traders at the national level. A substantial 30% failed to provide essential company details in their posts, such as email addresses, company names, postal addresses, or registration numbers.

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