Looking at customer reviews before making that big money purchase is something many consumers practice. But what if the reviews you’re seeing are all lies? Better yet, what if the person who submitted the review was paid by the company?
According to the Federal Trade Commission, a Xbox One promoter paid two gaming bloggers to post positive video reviews of the game console. The bloggers posted four videos days before the launch of the Xbox One. The videos had more than 1.6 million views. Machinima, the promoter, later paid more people to upload positive reviews.
The company never revealed that the reviewers were paid.
The two bloggers made a total of $45,000. The others were paid $1 for every 1,000 video views and could earn up to a total of $25,000.
Machinima and the FTC decided to settle. The settlement prevents the company from lying to consumers again.
A law by FTC requires reviewers to disclose their connection to a company in order for the public to know their credibility.