The Honda Ridgeline sponsored video violates FCC guidelines.

Created by bippityboppity on Sept. 27, 2016, 12:22 p.m.
  • https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/ftcs-endorsement-guides-what-people-are-asking

    If I upload a video to YouTube and that video requires a disclosure, can I just put the disclosure in the description that I upload together with the video?

    No, because it's easy for consumers to miss disclosures in the video description. Many people might watch the video without even seeing the description page, and those who do might not read the disclosure. The disclosure has the most chance of being effective if it is made clearly and prominently in the video itself. That's not to say that you couldn't have disclosures in both the video and the description.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBgDx3MK3aY

    The only disclosure that this is sponsored is a #sponsored at the bottom of the description. This doesn't meet FCC guidelines for disclosure.

  • first dialogue of the video "honda recently gave us the chance ..."

    0:19 Honda logo is stamped on the video

    The FTC guidelines are "A disclosure is clear and conspicuous if consumers notice it, read it, and understand it."

    I am a consumer. And I could notice it, read it, and understand it. It was clear and conspicuous. Take a poll and I think almost everyone understands this is sponsored.

  • "Honda gave us the chance" doesn't explicitly describe it as a sponsored video, and neither does the Honda logo that appeared for a few seconds.

  • @bippityboppity: It *really* does. You think Honda's content-marketing department didn't vet the fuck out of this video before it was posted?

    In all but exceptional circumstances Honda as the advertiser is responsible if a brand-integration partner violates the FTC Act with content they create under contract with them, so they do their due diligence to make sure things are above board.

  • Whether "Honda gave us the chance" is enough to meet the FTC requirements or not, I'd rather not get thinly vailed advertisments from Tested. I appreciate that running Tested costs money, that Norm, Adam, Joey, and the rest of the crew need to earn a living, and that Hondas "sponsorship" of these videos has helped Tested raise it's profile, assuming Honda are showing this, and the other upcoming videos in the series, elsewhere to show off their Ridgeline brand.

    As a Premium member I didn't pay to join the site to be adversisted too. Between this, the lack of Premium content, and the change in tone & quality of the videos since Will left I doubt I'll be renewing my subscription next year.
  • Richard, it isn't like these are a new thing. They do a sponsored video series every 18 months or so... previously they've been the Inventern sponsored by Motorola, and the Racing Spiders sponsored by Evernote that I can remember off the top of my head. From what the guys have said on the subject (usually they can't actually disclose how much they're paid) they make a big impact on the bottom line for them (going by what brands this size have spent on youtube integrations in the past, and the size of Tested/Adam's audience, my guess would be about $250k for the series).

  • Kim, I realise there have been other sponsored videos on Tested in the past, however those felt, to me anyway, more like videos aimed at Tested viewers rather than the sponsor wanting something to promote their product. The Inventern happened before I found Tested so I haven't watched them, but the Evernote sponsored Racing Spider videos had some interesting design and engineering involved, not just "let's build a box to fit in the back of this Honda Ridgeline truck. Did you see the Honda Ridgeline truck here? Look it's a Honda Ridgeline truck".
  • Personally I felt the product-placement and namedropping was a lot less obtrusive in this video than the Racing Spider one, even as a pretty fervent Evernote user I found the constant mentions even when racing around the dirt track/discussing CAD modelling/driving to the fabricator etc. ridiculous :p

  • I don't understand the problem with the sponsored content. You have paid for premium membership to see the site succeed. When I support a website, podcast, charity, etc. I rarely even touch the bonus content because for me it's about supporting what I love. I understand not everyone has this mindset but I highly doubt the site and staff run off the profits of just our membership. If every ~8 months they have to do some sponsored content to refill the piggy bank what's the harm? Ultimately, if it helps keep the staff and site afloat; it is in our best interest to see it succeed. If a considerable amount of videos and articles become sponsored content, I can see where we have a conflict of interest and the entire site changes focus but we are talking about a minuscule percentage right now of sponsored vs non...

  • Oldsmobile gave me the opportunity to make another comment on this thread. They sent me forward in time to see if they are still in business, by going to Tested and seeing if anyone still talks about them. I can see that it's not working. But you know, at least if I am time traveling, I'm enjoying the smooth and comfortable ride of my Oldsmobile 88 with time travel feature.


  • @donbright said:

    Oldsmobile gave me the opportunity to make another comment on this thread. They sent me forward in time to see if they are still in business, by going to Tested and seeing if anyone still talks about them. I can see that it's not working. But you know, at least if I am time traveling, I'm enjoying the smooth and comfortable ride of my Oldsmobile 88 with time travel feature.

    When you go back, let them know that it was the Achieva that did them in, if they make a go at it again, more focus on the Aurora and they should be fine. If by chance they work out backwards travel in time, maybe go back and reconsider putting 'old' in the name of the brand. Not that 'new'mobile is any better, to keep it safe, recommend staying away from old and 'mobile' for long term branding strategy.