"We will give the names," promised Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire in early May. A few weeks later, Bercy published this Friday, June 2, on its website, a first wave of influencers pinned for "misleading commercial practices". If other surnames will be revealed later - 30 in total - the first personalities to undergo this "name and shame" are: Illan Castronovo, Capucine Anav, Anthony Mateo, Gaetan Debled, Léa Montchicourt or Simon Castaldi.
These influencers will be required to post on their social networks for 30 days posts written by the DCCRF (Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control), and recalling the law. On Wednesday, it had already forced two of them - Simon Castaldi and Illan Castronovo - to publish such messages. Other injunctions could also fall in the coming days. "It is up to the latter (influencers, editor's note) like any other company to respect the provisions of the consumer code when they promote products or services. The injunctions addressed to them remind them to order and invite their subscribers to vigilance, "says the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
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The controversy in recent months between the rapper Booba and Magali Berdah, the boss of the agency Shauna Event, as well as the fight led by several collectives had put on the front of the stage the drifts of some influencers. Between financial scams, counterfeit promotions, dropshipping sites, disguised advertisements or parcels never delivered... For example, a class action lawsuit was launched at the end of January by dozens of people believing they had been scammed by investing in financial products touted by the couple Marc and Nadé Blata, exiled in Dubai.
Influencer, a status defined in the law
This practice of "name and shame" is a way for the Ministry of Economy to begin to implement the text of the law regulating the sector of influence, which was definitively adopted Thursday by parliament. "The recent publication of administrative sanctions taken against influencers isan opportunity to recall the powers of the DGCCRF in terms of communicating the identity of sanctioned companies," says the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
From now on, the status of influencer is defined in the law and the "direct or indirect promotion of acts, processes, techniques and methods for aesthetic purposes" is prohibited, says the law. The same goes for advertisements highlighting cigarettes, electronic cigarettes, or Puffs, fashionable among young people... Offerings of digital tokens, digital assets or digital asset services are also prohibited, unless they come from platforms approved by financial authorities.