Ads in disguise: Brand owners and influencers beware of German consumer protection laws


#sponsoredby and #ad won’t help when it comes to necessary disclosure of sponsored advertising. German courts are asked to rule on content in influencers’ social media channels and do not hesitate to apply unfair commercial practices law both towards influencers and brand owners.

Brands, agencies and influencers should be considerate when marketing products through blog posts in social media channels in Germany. Paid advertisement needs to be expressly marked with #Anzeige (advertising) or #Werbung (promotion) at the beginning of the ad or thread. Berlin’s Court of Appeals (Kammergericht) just recently was not prepared to accept #ad or #sponsoredby at the end of a post as sufficiently clearly indicating the commercial nature of a post in an otherwise editorial blog.

In practice, we recommend to use the Branded Content Tools which are now preinstalled in almost every social media platform and allow an explicit disclosure of posts as advertisement in a manner that should reasonably be considered sufficient.

The recent rulings are in line with similar earlier decisions, dealing with the presentation of influencer advertising and the content of influencers’ statements. See for more information the recent article of our colleagues here:

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