The federasts at BuzzFeed love to trumpet their trendy appeal to a higher ethical code. Even in the age of aggressive native marketing and advertorials, BuzzFeed has promised to never run stories about ads it’s being paid for:
“Appreciation buzz posts celebrating a fun or cool ad are fine, as are posts critical of ads — but that content should not be about ads BuzzFeed’s business side has created.”
That’s all well and good, especially as doing so could be in breach of EU directive 2005/29/EC, which places a firm ban on “Using editorial content in the media to promote a product where a trader has paid for the promotion without making that clear in the content” – in other words, advertorials which don’t carry a “sponsored” or “advert” heading.
BuzzFeed has so far run five stories featuring the Jack Wills brand, purely as an act of “celebrating a fun or cool ad”. Here are our fave snaps from them:
1. Those totes-beaut hoodies.
2. That fetch Jack Wills in Cheshire…
3. …and that even fetcher one in Surrey.
4. Got to love those JW scents.
5. And last but not least, all those steamy Jack Wills models wearing Jack Wills clothes.
After asking BuzzFeed a spokesman was quick to tell Guido there was no commercial relationship between the trendy site and clothing company – after all, they’ve fallen foul of native advertising laws before on articles by “Brand Publishers”. You won’t believe what BuzzFeed’s shareholders must think about running (unpaid?) advertorials…
UPDATE: UK editor Janine Gibson tweets in response ‘In the words of Tina Fey: “Nope. Not product placement. That’s just the kind of revenue creating geniuses we are.”‘