Samsung Fined $340,000 For Astroturfing in Taiwan


Recently Samsung was fined with a whooping amount of $340,000 for false praise and negative comments about other companies. This incident first came into light internationally in April ,When Taiwan’s Fair Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it was going to open an investigation against the allegation. During the investigation they found out the allegations were true , according to the FTC Samsung used a “large number of hired writers and designated employees” to post in Taiwanese forums. The investigation also reveals that Samsung used third party marketing company for this , as claimed by Samsung originally. Two local marketing firms were fined a combined total of over $100,000 for their part in the marketing blunder.

Samsung Mobile Logo

When this activity of Samsung first came out , HTC was presented as the victim for defamation from the Korean company’s army of commenter , but the FTC’s report doesn’t clearly mentions the name of Taiwanese name. Instead it clearly mentions that the company paid people to “highlight the shortcomings of competing products.” The list in the report includes  “disinfection of negative news about Samsung products,” “palindromic Samsung product marketing,” and the positive evaluation of Samsung products.

Both collectively and individually , these type of unusual marketing are known in the industry as  “astroturfing.” While Samsung is not the only one in this business , its just it is been caught twice this year for using this practice .