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Instagram ‘paid partnerships’ tag slowly rolled out in Singapore

Instagram has started rolling out its ‘paid partnership’ tag in Singapore as part of a global move to improve transparency in the influencer marketing industry.

Following pressure from the United States’ Federal Trade Commission over paid celebrity posts that didn’t include full disclosures, the image-sharing giant introduced a sub-header on paid content disclosing the brand’s monetary involvement.

Now the ‘paid partnership’ tag has started appearing on the feeds of several Instagram influencers in Singapore, with brands such as Chinese e-commerce platform Taobao being among the first to take part with its Singles Day marketing.

Calvin Klein is another brand to have signed up.

According to Instagram, the paid tool lets creators tag the business they have a relationship with. The tag was developed after the  FTA complained that disclosures such as ‘#sp’ or ‘Thanks [Brand]’ were not clear enough indications that a post is sponsored.

Here, influencers have only the guidelines of the Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore to adhere to. These stipulate that: “Disclosures of commercial relationships and disclaimers should be made prominent, easy to understand and appropriate for the form that the communication takes”.

Fresh guidelines were brought in last year following a scandal involving influencers allegedly being paid to write negative posts about Singtel’s rivals.

However, currently only a handful of brands and influencers have started enacting the ‘paid’ tag, while a number of branded posts remain undisclosed, including these from Naomi Neo and Mongchin Yeoh.

Earlier this year, influencer Melissa Koh made headlines after it emerged a number of brands sponsored her wedding in exchange for social media coverage.

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