Natasha Singer reports:
In many ways, it was a typical social media marketing campaign featuring user-generated content — only this promotion involved a brand popular with children.
Earlier this year, the company behind Ring Pop, a jewel-shaped sucking candy on a plastic ring, ran a contest called #RockThatRock. It invited users to post photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram of “how they ‘rock’ their edible bling,” as one fan site put it, and to use the #RockThatRock hashtag. The winning photos were featured in a music video by R5, a pop-rock band popular with teenage and pre-teenage girls.
Some of the #RockThatRock photos were posted on the brand’sFacebook and Twitter pages, along with contestants’ social media user names. Some of those photos depicted teenaged girls — and a few who looked even younger – in provocative poses, with their lips puckered around Ring Pop candies.
Now, 10 advocacy groups have asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the Topps Company, the maker of Ring Pops, accusing the company of violating a federal children’s privacy protection law.
Read more on the New York Times.