Washington, D.C. – Cardi B and nine other Instagram influencers received warning letters from the Federal Trade Commission after failing to properly disclose paid advertisements.
According to Buzzfeed News, the multi-platinum selling rapper and her fellow social media mavens came under scrutiny for promoting the detox tea company Teami. The FTC has accused Teami of misleading consumers about the health benefits of its products.
Cardi claimed Teami helped her lose weight in an Instagram video posted on November 23, 2018. The FTC said the post was “deceptive” because “it lacked a clear disclosure” that she was paid to endorse the product.
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The BEST fuckingggg black friday deal. If you spend you $$$ on ANYTHING it better be Teami. Thankful to be a #teamipartner and getting this momma bear bod right!! You need this fuckin detox. @teamiblends is givin yall BUY ONE GET ONE FREE DETOXES code: CARDIFREE #thankyouteami
Although Cardi used the hashtag #teamipartner in her caption, the FTC said it wasn’t displayed properly. The agency also took issue with her video.
“The disclosure was not visible to followers viewing the post in their Instagram feeds unless they clicked ‘more,'” the letter read. “Thus, it was not clear and conspicuous. In addition, there was no disclosure in the video. Because the video could be viewed without anyone seeing a disclosure, you should disclose any material connection in the video itself and not just the text portion of your post.”
The warning also requested a written response, which is due on March 30.
“Individual influencers who fail to make adequate disclosures about their connections to marketers are subject to legal enforcement action by the FTC,” the agency declared. “Please provide a written response to this letter by March 30, 2020, describing what actions you are or will be taking to ensure that your social media posts endorsing brands and businesses with which you have a material connection clearly and conspicuously disclose your relationships.”
Check out the letters to Cardi and the other Instagram influencers here.