Under advertising rules in the UK, any “paid for” content posted by celebrities and influencers must be clearly identified as a marketing communication. The ASA has found that two Instagram posts uploaded by influencer Carl J Woods, in which Woods appeared in Engage clothing, were in breach of the CAP code because they were misleading and did not adequately disclose the influencer’s commercial relationship with the brand, for example by including an identifier such as “#ad”. The content was “paid-for” because the clothing worn by Woods was gifted to him by Engage, in exchange for publicity. It was irrelevant that there was no formal contractual arrangement in place between the parties, or that Woods was not paid in monetary terms.

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