×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Kardashians in Trouble Over Paid Product Endorsements on Instagram

The Kardashian family is known for over-sharing, but a consumer watchdog group alleges that Kim & Co. have crossed a line with some of their social media posts. Truth in Advertising sent a letter to the Kardashian-Jenner family last week, telling them that they had found over 100 Instagram posts that were paid product placements without being marked as advertising.

The Kardashians now have a week to take those posts down, or Truth in Advertising will notify the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which in turn could open an official investigation. The group found undisclosed product placement on the Instagram accounts of five Kardashian siblings, which collectively advertised more than two dozen companies without proper disclosures.

“Kylie had the most problem posts. Kim took second,” it stated in a blog post Monday. “Puma, with which Kylie has an endorsement deal, led all companies in TINA.org’s sampling with 13 posts. Paid posts promoting Fit Tea appeared on Kylie, Khloe, and Kourtney’s Instagram pages.”

FTC regulations require journalists, celebrities and other media personalities to disclose their relationship with companies if they are reimbursed for a review or endorsement. These regulations were initially put in place to make sure TV show hosts wouldn’t advertise products without proper disclosures on air, but have since been adapted to the social media age.

The FTC even advises users on its website on how to ad proper disclosures to tweets and Instagram messages without adding long-winded legalese: “The words ‘Sponsored’ and ‘Promotion’ use only 9 characters. ‘Paid ad’ only uses 7 characters.”

This isn’t the first time the Kardashians have gotten in trouble for not properly labeling ads on Instagram. A year ago, Kim Kardashian posted a photo on Instagram that endorsed medicine against morning sickness without a warning of possible side effects. The FDA stepped in and forced her to take down the post.

Product endorsements on Instagram have become a big business for celebrities, with some estimating that celebrities like Kendall Jenner make up to $300,000 with a single endorsement.

Correction: 8/24: A previous version of this post erroneously stated that the Kardashian family may get in trouble with the Federal Communications Commission. Instead, it’s the Federal Trade Commission that may take action against indisclosed product endorsements.

More Digital

  • Missing Link Laika Studios

    ‘Missing Link’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Annapurna Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Missing Link.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.91 million through Sunday for [...]

  • Sirius Logo

    SiriusXM Unveils $8 Essential Plan for Consumers Without Cars

    SiriusXM wants to cater consumers without cars, or cars without compatible stereos, with a new $8 plan for mobile and in-home listening. Dubbed SiriusXM Essential, the plan offers access to 200+ channels featuring the network’s entire music programming, as well comedy, news and select sports channels. Consumers will be able to test the new plan [...]

  • Mueller Report Book Editions Top Amazon's

    Mueller Report Book Editions Shoot to Top of Best-Seller Lists at Amazon, Barnes & Noble

    Robert Mueller is now a best-selling author. Book publishers’ forthcoming editions of the special counsel’s report zoomed to the top of the Amazon’s and Barnes & Noble’s lists of book best-sellers Friday. That comes a day after the report was publicly released, culminating the nearly two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election [...]

  • Marques Brownlee - Retro Tech

    YouTube Orders Marques Brownlee 'Retro Tech' Original Series

    YouTube has turned to one of its homegrown stars — technology vlogger Marques Brownlee, aka “MKBHD” — for its newest original series. The video platform has greenlit series “Retro Tech” featuring Brownlee, in which he’ll unbox and review vintage technology products that have defined pop culture. The show, slated to debut in December 2019, follows [...]

  • Netflix Tests Random Episode Button in

    Netflix Starts Testing Random Episode Button

    Netflix is testing a button to play random episodes of select TV shows, the company confirmed Friday morning. “We are testing the ability for members to play a random episode from different TV series on the Android mobile app,” a Netflix spokesperson told Variety. “These tests typically vary in length of time and by region, [...]

  • Netflix Our Planet Sophie Darlington

    Netflix's 'Our Planet' Roars to Life With Work by Top Wildlife Cinematographers

    In terms of scope, production time and — very likely — budget, Netflix’s “Our Planet” is one of the most ambitious projects from the streaming service to date. Narrated by David Attenborough and made available worldwide on April 5, the goal of the eight-part series is to capture diverse habitats across the globe and highlight [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content