Norway Law: Instagram Influencers Need to Label Retouched Photos

Advertisers in Norway, including social media ‘influencers’ running paid marketing programs, will soon be subject to a new law that will require them to disclose photos that have been retouched to alter the physical appearance of human subjects as such — reports CNET.

Norway’s king will determine when the new regulations, passed last month as an amendment to the country’s Marketing Act, will take effect.

The new law will cover any marketing content where the shape, size, or skin of a featured human subject has been altered in any way. For such content, advertisers will have to include a disclamatory label designed by the Norwegian Ministry of Children and Family Affairs.

In the case of social media influencers like Instagram models and celebrities with a strong online presence, the new rules will cover any posts from which they “receive any payment or other benefit”.

Posts on all social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Snapchat, and Twitter will fall under the new law’s purview. Failure to comply will result in fines and (possibly) imprisonment.

The influencer market is bigger and more far-reaching than most people realize, so much so that the largest social media platforms are paying influencers to migrate to their apps.

Influencers consequently play a central role in shaping the views and personalities of millions, especially the more impressionable youth — creating the need to regulate their ‘influence’ and minimize the negative impact retouched images can have on public mental health. It’ll be interesting if such a law ever makes its way to Canada and the USA.