This weekend I noticed that the celebrity tweet regulation story was covered by The Sun. It’s interesting to see this digital media story go ‘mainstream’. I personally think celebrity ‘tweetgulation’ is a good thing. It’s keeping things fair across the board and it should be done. UK television networks have had to fight for years to incorporate products into their creative content. A-list celebrities on Twitter have the same audience size as some television shows, so why shouldn’t they be made to be accountable like TV networks?
Celebrity fans have flocked to Twitter to follow their heros and heroines because they feel like they’ll get an insider’s
view of the working of their lives. Generally speaking, we’ve been conditioned to believe that a celebrity’s musings on Twitter are more authentic and trustworthy than the overly crafted and PR’d blabber that’s found in magazines and interviews. Celebrities supposedly tweet from the heart (chuckle, chuckle). I can imagine that there are superfans who’ve made purchases based on a tweet, believing a celebrity realllly liked it based on the fact that the endorsement was delivered via Twitter. It’s a shame that some celebrities have used the channel to surreptitiously make a buck by endorsing products in this way.
We’ve worked with a number of brands on social media content and one of the lessons we drill into our clients is ‘say no to astroturfing’. We harp on and on about the need for transparency and that truth should only be spoken in a tweet, Facebook post and blog. Celebrities are essentially brands in themselves so why shouldn’t they be held to the same standard?