Paid posts on Weibo without any disclosure are no more secrets in China and those postings are disguised as personal sharing with their fans.
Yang Mi, a famous singer and actress in China, shared her personal experience using a silky soap with four photos last November on Weibo (as shown in the image above), three of which are various angles of the products. At the time of writing this article, the post was re-posted over 157 thousand times with over 118 thousand comments.
Around the same period, hosts of a famous variety TV show Happy Camp organized audience interactions for the same brand. So, you be the judge, how likely is she posting a paid post instead of truly sharing personal experience?
According to some leaked data online, some top celebrities on Weibo get paid per post for over RMB one million, which are normally under-the-table deals. And, the Weibo accounts are normally operated by someone else as long as they agree with the requests of the “advertisers”.
China’s amended Consumer Protection Law released this March stated that celebrities endorsement or media of false advertising are also liable as the merchants. But, it’s long way to go stopping such behaviors.