Customer reviews and ratings are powerful, low-cost marketing tools. Technology now allows marketers to harness this power on a scale that was unimaginable even five years ago. The ability to solicit, capture, and post reviews and ratings is virtually seamless. But it is just as easy to seek shortcuts or abuse the system. In response, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has devoted resources to addressing consumer review fraud, including through public education. Early in 2022, it issued nonbinding guidance for both marketersandonline review platforms, warning against potentially deceptive acts, such as faking, manipulating, or suppressing online reviews, as well as paying for higher rankings from purportedly "independent" consumer ranking websites.
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