Wanted to send along another warning to affiliates to be careful who you partner with AND be careful how you promote affiliate products. There was a big rash of FTC crackdowns a couple years ago on Acai affiliates, many of whom were using those fake news sites to pitch products. Evidently all those busts didn’t quash all the bad players and recently Clickbooth, one of the biggest affiliate networks, appears to have gotten caught in the FTC’s cross hairs.
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Affiliate Network to Pay $2 Million for Allegedly Using Deceptive Claims to Sell Acai Berry Weight-Loss Products and Colon Cleansers
According to the complaint, Sarasota, Florida-based Clickbooth has been paid by merchants since 2008 to market supposed weight-loss products to consumers, and recruited a network of affiliate marketers who deceptively advertised those products. The complaint also alleges that the defendants prepared and designed websites for Central Coast Nutraceuticals, a merchant that agreed to pay $1.5 million to settle FTC charges of deceptive advertising and unfair billing related to the sale of weight loss and colon cleanse products.
The FTC alleges that the defendants recruited affiliate marketers to advertise the merchants’ so-called weight loss products online. Clickbooth then monitored the ads that its affiliates used, suggested certain claims for the affiliates to make, and even designed some websites for the affiliates to use, according to the complaint.