dirhams & dollars

Influence this: How the UAE is getting tough on social media

With the introduction of new laws on social media influencers, we look at what it means

21:58 March 13, 2018
Influencer

Dubai: Influencers are back in the headlines. Previously, these beauty experts and fans of food operated in a kind of legal grey zone, not quite a business and yet sometimes earning as much as Dh60,000 per post.

That’s all about to change, however.

The UAE announced last week that anyone conducting “commercial activities” through social media would be required to register for a government-issued license.

The new rules specifically target social media influencers, who parlay their internet fame into advertising revenue.

Already, tighter regulations in the US have seen famous influencers such as Kim Kardashian become more transparent about what is, and isn’t, a sponsored post on Instagram.

Does forcing influencers to explicitly state that what they are doing is paid for kill some of the magic?

We are joined in the studio by Yousra Zaki, deputy editor of Guides, and co-host of Live Your Best Life, a Gulf News lifestyle podcast, who has been covering the new regulations and their impact on influencers.

Yousra explains what the long term effect will be, and if, as many suspect, this may cause a culling of social media personalities.