Thursday, January 21, 2010

Paid Tweeters and how I feel decieved

I am not going to mention any specific people since I do not know the whole story yet. But there is someone in the Advertising/Marketing world with a website and lots of followers on Twitter. I agreed with the FCC's ruling that paid Tweeters somehow must announce they are being paid (this goes for Bloggers too), for the most part I always assumed this was just for products. Like Paris Hilton being paid to state she is buying a Brand of Nail Polish, to separate the 'real life' from the 'paid to respresent' Tweets.

Yesterday while reading an article from a very well known business publication, it seems someone I follow on Twitter, whom I just figured was either sharing, building their own business, or being social. My hunch is that some Tweeters are now paid per Tweet to drive traffic to specific websites. And this can come across as innocent especially when the subject matter seems beneficial, funny, informative etc. And when the article said that while Kim Khardasian someone I would never follow or care about is paid $10k per Tweet (talk about throwing money away on a G Lister) this person gets $900 per Tweet!

So in fairness I have asked this person to explain because I wish to know what they are being paid to promote. Is it all the Tweets? Is it specific ones? I don't want to see the paid Tweets unless they are clearly marketed as Advertising-Promotional so I can decide whether to read, click through any links etc. This isn't to say I won't click through to links. I mean if there is value being shared sure thing. But I do not like deception and currently I have 'Followers Remorse' since I have re-tweeted some of the persons Tweets.

Now to be fair when a Brand or a Website or any Business Entity has a Twitter or Facebook account the people who are managing it obviously are being paid, but we all know they are being paid to promote a product and are on the payroll. But when it is an individual the lines blur. If this specific person makes money when I click through to their website and read content I am very OK with that as long as I can connect the dots. It is very important trust not be broken between Brands, Businesses, and Consumers because it is very hard to win back that trust.

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