Fake blogs to become illegal in UK


Niall Cook points out a story in this week’s UK PR Week magazine – about a piece of European law set to be enacted in the UK at the end of the year.

I haven’t seen the full article as my copy of PR Week doesn’t seem to have arrived yet, but according to Niall:

The directive will apparently prohibit “unfair commercial practices” including “falsely representing oneself as a consumer”.

This would seem to clearly outlaw the practice of fake blogging (flogging). It may well outlaw a number of other ethically dubious practices at the fringe of professional PR practice.

The practice of fake blogging was also outlawed late last year by the UK’s advertising self-regulation body, the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA), when it ruled on a fake blog produced by radio station talkSPORT. Full details are in my blog post about the ruling.

The forthcoming EU law would seem to add extra legal clout to the ASA’s ruling on future cases similar to the talkSPORT one.