Taiwan's FTC Fines Samsung for Astroturfing

October 24, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has fined Samsung and two local PR firms for what it described as an organized campaign to post positive reviews of its products, while maligning competitors' products. Samsung reportedly carried this plan out through two local public relations firms who used a "large number of hired writers and designated employees" to get the job done. Samsung and the two local firms were fined $100,000 each, though the original fine it faced was much higher - as much as $1 million.

In defending itself against these charges, Samsung said that the local firms were responsible for the fake online comments. The FTC didn't buy that defense, noting that the local companies were providing Samsung with weekly and monthly reports on topics such as viral marketing campaign results, positive and negative comments, and more.

The FTC also said that the firms and designated Samsung employees "disinfected negative comments on Samsung’s own products" and highlighted shortcomings of competitors’ products. While doing all of this on Samsung's behalf, the firms did not disclose their relationship with the company.

The company told The Verge that it remains "committed to engaging in transparent and honest communications with consumers," in response to questions about the company engaging in astroturfing activities...

Source: VentureBeat


Comments

Re: Taiwan's FTC Fines Samsung for Astroturfing

Though I approve of Samsung's quality I do not approve of fake reviews. If you make a good product then you do not need fake accounts or employees giving good reviews. Though some bloggers would agree or disagree seeing Bioware got a pass for doing this cause of what they push in their games now.

Re: Taiwan's FTC Fines Samsung for Astroturfing

Trying to figure out why a company would want a fake employee, or if they would know  what a fake employee would look like. 

Sorry to get off topic. Just a thought that hit me. 

Re: Taiwan's FTC Fines Samsung for Astroturfing

I'm glad in knowing that somebody is slapping the wrist of those that would unfairly deceive customer.

 
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