Book Bloggers Beware!

Lately there’s been a huge increase in opportunities for readers who write reviews to obtain complimentary copies of  about-to-be released books. This afternoon I ran across the following caviat on the Guardian.co.uk Book Blog:

The US Government is after me – and you, if you’re a book blogger.

If you get a free book, and don’t disclose this “vested interest” if you blog about it, you are now liable to five-figure fines.

Further on:

The FTC claims it is seeking to protect consumers from being gulled by “paid shills” masquerading as objective or independent commentators. That is a reasonably aim. Alas, as the legislation stands, it is maddeningly vague and confused but also insanely ambitious in its apparent aim to police hundreds of thousands of independent voices.

Well, I often review books that have been sent to me by publishers, but I resent being considered a “paid shill.” By the time I’ve read and reviewed any book, my “pay” amounts to about 20 cents an hour, if that. But from now on, in goes the disclaimer.
Read more.

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4 thoughts on “Book Bloggers Beware!

  1. Now I’m going to sound like an idiot because I don’t remember who it was that said so, but . . . Someone on Twitter (also a book blogger) spoke to a rep from the FTC at Some Event and she said the FTC is absolutely, utterly not after book bloggers. But, I don’t sound very convincing, since I don’t remember who said it and I’m too tired to look it up. Still . . . it was good news.

  2. BEK says:

    Wow–just spent 30 minutes calling my Congressman and looking up every search term I could think of in Thomas for such a bill and I’m not finding anything. In the future, if you’re going to post information like this, a bill number would be very helpful.

    By the way, there’s no Federal agency titled. “FDC.”

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