Olympic hopefuls in Britain are advertising on twitter without declaring they have sponsorship deals with the brands. These athletes have been tweeting about everything form new cars to nail varnish, in some instances being offered an excess of $1 million to tweet about brands, DailyMail is reporting.
These athletes could face trouble with the UK’s Office of Fair Trading, who warn about deceptive advertising on Twitter. Celebrities must make it clear if they are being paid by a company if they do endorsements on the site.
Diver Tom Daley is one who has used his Twitter account to endorse the Cooper Mini, Tweeting “My amazing parallel park into the smallest space ever,” complete with a picture of his Mini. He often tweets about Adidas.
Gold Medalist Rebecca Adlington wrote “Oh, my, received some amazing Elizabeth Arden products today! Very needed as the chlorine is killing my skin at the minute.”
Others have joined in the race for endorsement deals. Diver Tonia Couch, gymanst Louis Smith, hurdler Perri Shakes-Drayton, and track cyclist Dani King have all tweeted about BMW.
Synchronized swimmer Jenna Randall, tweets daily about her sponsors
The Office of Fair Trading wants to see a list of sponsors on these athletes Twitter pages, so when people see a Tweet about a product, they know they are getting paid to do so. A spokesman for the office said to DailyMail: “Online advertising and marketing practices that do not disclose they include paid for promotions are deceptive under trading laws.”
For many of these athletes, there fame may be short lived. They are cashing in on the one chance they have at the London 2012 Olympics. I say, let them. It’s not everyday the Olympics come to your home country. The last Olympics in the UK was London 1948, most of these athlete’s parents weren’t even born yet.