YouTubers have to declare ads. Why doesn't anyone else?

Around the world, there are regulations for "influencers". Those regulations make sure that if someone is paid to endorse a product, they have to declare that payment to the people watching. But why does no-one on TV, or film, or anywhere else have to do that?
Written and performed by TOM SCOTT
Script assistant ANDREA MARKS
"Does the Spearmint Lose Its Flavor on the Bedpost Overnight" by Rose/Broom/Breuer (1924), arranged for orchestra by BENJAMIN SQUIRES
Filmed safely:
© Pad 26 Limited MMXXI
Lonnie Donegan changing Spearmint: mentioned in a lot of places, but I can't find a contemporary account.
Ray Davies flying: thekinks/status/1265203792754212864 and
BBC trademark policy:
Pitbull and Kodak: pitbull/status/16567622829080576
Pitbull and Voli: "Owned and operated by Armando Christian Perez, aka Pitbull"
Gucci on Lil Pump: no quotes, but given the lyrics and video, it's safe to say they didn't have control
YMCA reaction:,10172867
US Code Title 15:
Nikkie de Jager, One Dip Makeup Challenge:
Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers [PDF]:
An Influencer’s Guide to making clear that ads are ads [PDF]:
The FTC’s Endorsement Guides: What People Are Asking:
NLcameras declaration:
"Branded content pods":
Farrow and Ball:
Branson cameo:
Superman's $40,000:
Bond placement:
Lorraine Kelly's tax bill:
"Moms' conference":
SNT viewing figures:
"19 years in a row":
"Can't find any other example" of the castle being covered:
Ofcom on product placement in UK TV:
"One article on a tabloid web site":
FCC, "The FCC and Freedom of Speech":
US Bill of Rights:
First Amendment exceptions: fact-checked by legal experts, but best summarised on Wikipedia:
Commercial speech:
Communications Act 2003:
Animal Defenders International v United Kingdom:
CMA, "Social media endorsements: being transparent with your followers":
German product placement:
00:00 Intro
00:58 1. Payment and Control
05:47 2. You Have To Declare It
09:17 3. No-One Else Has To Declare It
18:03 4. We're Going To Disney World
24:47 5. The Land Of The Free
31:15 Outro


  1. Tom Scott

    Tom Scott

    17 dagen geleden

    "Influencers have to declare sponsorships clearly and up-front. Why doesn't that apply to any other medium?" would have been a much more accurate title, but alas, NLcameras titles have to be short and catchy!

    • skylx08


      5 uur geleden

      Only time I heard the lyrics "Does your chewing gum loose its flavor on the bedpost..." was in the Ray Stevens song "A-Hab the A-Rab". ...unclench, its from the 70s.

    • linkbirds


      11 uur geleden

      We gotchu fam

    • JoseitoEdlVodao


      16 uur geleden

      Because you guys haven't lobbied deep enough. Do you realize you're their competition? I don't have to watch the video but hey, is it easier than Time Zone logic?

    • 0623kaboom


      Dag geleden

      btw north america does have a law that says paid promotion must be declared on all media ... yup those but wait theres more commercials are disclaimed as paid promotions ... just because the UK doesnt have them doesnt mean no one does ...

    • theAverageGam3r


      Dag geleden

      Great video! To look at all of this backwards, I wonder if there have been cases where influencers / media have paid (to create their media) to talk negatively of a brand and have been subsequently sued for slander

  2. Maunster!


    Minuut geleden

    No one should be allowed to trademark any word, spearmint, apple, windows, etc.

  3. DeNisey BLM-MyLifeMatters

    DeNisey BLM-MyLifeMatters

    3 minuten geleden

    Did you really choke?

  4. rhade2k


    24 minuten geleden

    12:31 got an advert then

  5. Pandaoniman


    48 minuten geleden

    You make some good points. However, I still think Gucci Gang shouldn't get air time.

  6. lobster whisperer

    lobster whisperer

    Uur geleden

    Its virtually impossible to find honest reviews on NLcameras, try finding a negetive review, they are as rare as hens teeth..shills dominate this space.

  7. Zane Williams

    Zane Williams

    Uur geleden


  8. crematorium


    Uur geleden

    you had me at chiId gambling

  9. djones02


    Uur geleden

    Product placements in TV shows is not classy. It's tacky and everyone notices.

  10. Paul Robinson

    Paul Robinson

    Uur geleden

    Mmmm, So why don't BBC state every news cast that they take money from the Government, to get your perception in line with government Agenda? Strange eh!

  11. Sean Halldorson

    Sean Halldorson

    Uur geleden

    Tom Scott is one of the few NLcamerasrs that can keep my attention for a 30+ minute video. I typically hate long videos, but his are always really interesting.

  12. Dr Delewded

    Dr Delewded

    Uur geleden

    Too many regulations.. nonsense

  13. Dr Delewded

    Dr Delewded

    2 uur geleden

    This guy looks like julian assange, im out.

  14. El Bashar

    El Bashar

    2 uur geleden

    "Is this an advert?" *Godaddy ad proceeds to play* Perfect timing.

  15. CBM


    2 uur geleden

    I have a sudden urge to bulk buy red t-shirts.

  16. Eric Meyer

    Eric Meyer

    2 uur geleden

    It's ya boy. Raid Shadow Legends!

  17. TheMightyKinkle


    2 uur geleden

    31:32 'With thanks to Evan Edinger' I thought I recognised that bedroom!

  18. Max Hülle

    Max Hülle

    2 uur geleden

    Don't speak with smoke in your lungs Tom!

  19. NC_29 North

    NC_29 North

    3 uur geleden

    We just liked GME

  20. Pat B

    Pat B

    3 uur geleden

    Why do so many people seem hellbent on making our music and movies and other content, and the world in general, so mind-numbing? Is the extra cash really worth it? Is this the world you want to create for others as well as yourselves?

  21. TheMightyKinkle


    3 uur geleden

    12:31 "Is this an advert?" *Download Audible for free with your 30 day free trial* Wow!

  22. NC_29 North

    NC_29 North

    3 uur geleden

    This comment is not sponsored.

  23. John Dwyer

    John Dwyer

    3 uur geleden

    I love the bit about the ring doorbell.

  24. Kai Stitt

    Kai Stitt

    3 uur geleden

    Me: NLcameras: Wanna watch a 30 minute video about a topic that’s never even crossed your mind? Me: DO I?!

  25. Stabbity Joe

    Stabbity Joe

    3 uur geleden

    I’m eaatimg pringles while watching this video

  26. Heed My Warning

    Heed My Warning

    3 uur geleden

    Online advertising is so ingrained in our culture. Soon, parents will be naming kids "like" and "subscribe".

  27. 2020Tech4U


    3 uur geleden

    Well guess I'm not taking my kids to "Walt Disney World" now...... "Kids, say thanks to Mr. Scott", " THANKS MR. SCOTT!" sorry the temptation got me, not the cologne! Or was it? haha ads!

  28. Michael Wilson

    Michael Wilson

    4 uur geleden


  29. Nevan Howland

    Nevan Howland

    4 uur geleden


  30. PBDesign


    4 uur geleden

    what if im selling my bath water?

  31. Nunya Biznas

    Nunya Biznas

    4 uur geleden

    Advertising for something good is fine. It’s fine dude.

  32. Cyjax


    4 uur geleden

    Wooh how did you make the subtitles blue at 7:34

  33. Sky Leonidas

    Sky Leonidas

    4 uur geleden

    dude who cares just dont buy anything

  34. Arthur Kerr-Sheppard

    Arthur Kerr-Sheppard

    5 uur geleden

    What about doctors and Big Pharma?

  35. Norman Hosford

    Norman Hosford

    5 uur geleden

    Does that include a plot that presents a distorted view of reality to promote a political view? Showing fictional events in ways that make the rare events seem common or the extreme groups seem pervasive? Who would make that decision? Also, is rural England as portrayed by Midsomer really the murder capital of the world?

  36. Christopher Butler

    Christopher Butler

    5 uur geleden

    Intentional or not, that ad playing at "is this an advert" is *chef kiss*.

  37. Krishna Mahesh

    Krishna Mahesh

    5 uur geleden

    Shouldn't we also require that, just as financial contributors have to declare any interest in any companies whose stocks they recommend (long or short), political contributors and "journalists" have to declare any financial or electoral interests in any candidate or party they support? Just for consistency.... Same idea.

  38. Yotrymp


    6 uur geleden

    Is it a paid placement when news lies to foment war?

  39. ASMR For Dogs

    ASMR For Dogs

    6 uur geleden

    Materially, a film or television studio has a lot more clout for negotiating with a state compared to individuals making online content.

  40. StarFox


    6 uur geleden

    It’s time to play, is this an advert? *real ad plays*

  41. Dovki Paul

    Dovki Paul

    6 uur geleden

    seems like fair play, the 'big guys' in entertainment need more regulating, a lot of people view them as being more "legit" so therefore their influence is a lot greater than a random NLcameras or Instagram influencer. Movies should have some time at the start dedicated to showing all the sponsorship/product deals they got for that movie should

  42. Ctrl W

    Ctrl W

    7 uur geleden


  43. RuDuffEnough WellRu

    RuDuffEnough WellRu

    7 uur geleden

    You're right everyone should have to do it, or no one. I'm leaning on the side of everyone.

  44. Shay From Scratch

    Shay From Scratch

    8 uur geleden

    Tom Scott is a national treasure. Not my nation's national treasure, but a national treasure nonetheless. Appreciate him, Britain.

  45. Trace Seger

    Trace Seger

    8 uur geleden

    what beach was this recorded at? looks peaceful

  46. Roy H

    Roy H

    8 uur geleden

    The advert rules kind of blur the line on what a lie or deception really is. Or false pretenses. Lying, when made illegal, in the US comes with steep penalties. Many states don't have laws about lying to police, but the Feds can throw you in prison for several years for lying to them even though you're under no obligation at all to even talk to them. I'd be more comfortable with lies being punishable if they were misdemeanors. But then again some lies are the vehicles for theft, paperwork fraud, falsehoods to make a sale knowing the customer is basing their decision on the lie, otherwise known as separating a person from their money.

  47. Piero Vergara

    Piero Vergara

    8 uur geleden

    Hmmm. I get your point, but this would only be necessary if the world were mainly comprised of impulsive, superficial clueless dunces.... Which I would argue... may not be too far from the truth so i guess I forgot what I was trying to say now bye.

    • Piero Vergara

      Piero Vergara

      8 uur geleden

      For real tho, I think the limitations make sense in the realm of political thought - though on the flipside, making law that regulates political advertising would allow a hegemonic political faction to maintain power indefinitely without contest simply by choosing who they decide to strictly implement their legislative shackles on. Sounds familiar.... Hmmmmm

  48. joseph mullan

    joseph mullan

    8 uur geleden

    I think r.e. The Disneyland thing, they perhaps got away with it by wording Disneyland less as a product but rather as a collaboration between two production companies. When Rick and Morty were in the opening sequence of the simpsons, you wouldn’t say that’s product placement. (I do think it’s very muddled and a bit morally bankrupt to shove adverts in faces that much)

  49. siriusflood


    8 uur geleden

    Whilst it doesn't count as an advert, calling a box mod a "vape pen" could be breaking rules on obscenity.

  50. Felippe Silveira

    Felippe Silveira

    9 uur geleden

    When Tom said: "Is this an advert?" at 12:31 , I got an ad on the video 😂

  51. Gerry Phibbs

    Gerry Phibbs

    9 uur geleden

    Tom - your presentation has got me thinking, which I suspect was your goal. Your points are well taken, and well supported. While I too would prefer a set of universal media constraints - not necessarily *just* for product placements and concealed ads, I wonder whether the time and effort involved would be considered well invested. The technologies of media are changed so quickly, that "rules" set up today, simply may not apply at a future time when said technologies have evolved to effectively conceal such advertising. At 70 now, I've lived through enough revolutions, both social and technological, to know that they will continue to happen, often when we least expect or understand what's actually happening. When I was in school, we were taught to use slide rules for physics and math classes. At the time, handheld calculators were just showing up in the market - bulky battery operated affairs that varied greatly, depending on the brand and the cost. However, we were not permitted to use them in those classes! It violated school policies, as well as the teachers' preferences. Today in similar educational systems, each student is expected to have a high end cell phone, capable of doing tasks undreamed back in those days! What sort of technical achievements might the next generation (or two) be expected to have, and what sort of new tasks will be part of their daily lives? Rather than just advertising on TV, or on a NLcameras video, I'd expect to see non-stop feeds of advertising directed at whatever the next cell phones are, and that those same ads will be seamlessly incorporated into most (or all) of the functions of said devices. Because such ad-streams are not broadcast over traditional TV channels, will they be subject to the same sorts of considerations? Probably not - so will one of the all-too-soon-to-arrive-future careers be in generating or possibly regulating that sort of streaming advertising directed at everyone's individual personal media device? I hope that you continue to consider all the possibilities, as well as the potential ramifications of the various forms of advertising that are surely coming down the pike!

  52. HLGpanda


    9 uur geleden

    Well you can't spell advertisements without semen between tits.

  53. Richard S

    Richard S

    9 uur geleden

    In many countries there must be inserts like "this video contains product placement", but, well, it's at the end and not at the beginning and not during the video. And sometimes it reads something like this: "the moderator wears clothing from ...", which is a way of sponsoring and declaring the sponsoring in one message. Well, that's not optimal. And in big cinema movies there is product placement all over the place, for example the cars and laptops in Bond movies - and they mention it at the end, I'm sure, but who reads these tons of texts at the end of big movies, well I might do to see if I catch something interesting. It's really shocking how many people have been working for one movie.

  54. R. Crosby Lyles

    R. Crosby Lyles

    10 uur geleden

    Brilliant mate! Simply brilliant! Well I think I found out how to deal with Google Talk to text. If I use a slightly British accent it seems to understand me better.

  55. desmond


    10 uur geleden

    If it bothers you go find a real job

  56. truth betold

    truth betold

    11 uur geleden

    welcome to america . the land of the double standards . word trickery . the american dream is just that .. a dream , unattainable . where our countrys' biggest companies are advertising firms (google/youtube). UK having strict rules is a good thing. it doesnt allow companies to be as deceptive. over here in the states , they allow pharmaceutical companies to advertise their designer drugs even though taking them may result in growing extra limbs and even death. yes we have freedom of speech .... unless other people can hear you. just keep in mind that america is full of sh!t. just open your eyes and you can see right through our BS

  57. Bandito Dorito

    Bandito Dorito

    11 uur geleden

    The bed is a green screen because there is a green outline on Tom

  58. Ptao Tom

    Ptao Tom

    11 uur geleden

    Ok, so people can’t lie to manipulate the stock market, but can they tell the truth to manipulate the stock market?

  59. Minutewave


    12 uur geleden

    i loved how you covered up the costa milkshake logo lmao

  60. wesley strickland

    wesley strickland

    12 uur geleden

    Loud af jesus.

    • Ptao Tom

      Ptao Tom

      11 uur geleden

      The BBC had a monospony on it not a monopoly. It is a suddtle difference and a word that is now mostly forgotten. But still a cool word.

  61. tosspot1305


    12 uur geleden

    I want 'The Ring' doorbell sooo much!

  62. Augie Grant

    Augie Grant

    12 uur geleden

    great video

  63. Team Muggi

    Team Muggi

    12 uur geleden

    "Better get the Serious Toothpaste!"

  64. z gaio

    z gaio

    12 uur geleden

    Who cares about ad timing, Tom just took the fattest cotton rip I've ever seen

  65. Ponder & Prank

    Ponder & Prank

    12 uur geleden

    It’s time to play: Is This an Advert? ad plays

  66. Jesus Fried Christ

    Jesus Fried Christ

    13 uur geleden

    South Park was right. The ads are taking over.

  67. M S

    M S

    14 uur geleden

    UK has to have a "P" in the top corner to state product placement. Coronation Street does this, especially after they rebuilt the Street set and suddenly, Corrie has a Costa and a Co-op. 🤣🤣🤣

  68. Emanon Kianols

    Emanon Kianols

    14 uur geleden

    That little effort of American and British narration of the laws was smooth. It's the little tings!

  69. M S

    M S

    14 uur geleden

    Brilliant this. 👍🏻

  70. Emanon Kianols

    Emanon Kianols

    14 uur geleden

    I didn't get the ad everyone is talking about..

  71. The Noobest Girl

    The Noobest Girl

    14 uur geleden

    "America - The land of the free" should be in quotations

  72. xXFallenHyperionXx


    14 uur geleden

    >Spending money shouldn't be considered speech. Absolutely untrue. When you donate to a political candidate, you are put onto a donor list. Could you imagine what would happen if spending money wasn't considered speech? People could aggregate a list of people who donated to a certain candidate and charge them or otherwise abuse them with government power. All so Disney doesn't get Tom Brady to say he's going to Disney World after his Super Bowl win?

  73. Nigel nigel

    Nigel nigel

    14 uur geleden

    The BBC are very good at advertising/promoting non fully tested, trial vaccines.

  74. Vinnie Novido

    Vinnie Novido

    14 uur geleden

    "Is this an advert?" NLcameras - "i'm gonna play an advert here!"

  75. Fairydance Creations

    Fairydance Creations

    15 uur geleden

    The BBC had a monospony on it not a monopoly. It is a suddtle difference and a word that is now mostly forgotten. But still a cool word.



    15 uur geleden

    Right after "you have right to know when you are advertised" at 28:55 it showed "beginning of commercial 5.. 4.. 3.. 2.. 1.."

  77. Robert Guttke

    Robert Guttke

    15 uur geleden

    The erect periodical preauricularly remember because shark physiologically live down a spotty spruce. ablaze, knowledgeable tennis

  78. FLuffyxKittyCat


    15 uur geleden

    i love how this all started with Tmartn and Syndicate when they didnt disclose that they owned the CS GO lotto site. Everyone went insane and since then people had to disclose it properly

  79. James Field

    James Field

    15 uur geleden

    Great intro

  80. Bryan Gore

    Bryan Gore

    15 uur geleden

    It's all about control. If you build your own ham radio, and start broadcasting; you can say whatever you like. The only way to stop you, is for someone to come break down your door. So the government won't usually bother you unless there is a really good reason. It's one of the benefits of having a well armed population that likes throwing tea into the harbors. :)

  81. jirodyne


    15 uur geleden

    I've seen this arguement before, years ago. And from that I know why, at least here in America, TV and Movies don't have to do the same thing online media personal does. The answer, of course, is money. If Shows and Movies had to disclaim, up front, they were advertising. Then many people wouldn't watch those movies and shows anymore. So both A, the show/movie wouldn't make any money from Viewers. But also B, the companies who paid for the Advert wouldn't make any money or influence either and have ended up wasting money, and gained nothing. Those companies giving adverts, don't want that. They want to make money, they want their products known. And they used their money to make sure the FCC and other Government Entities don't ever make Laws restricting them.

  82. DaddyKids Vlogs

    DaddyKids Vlogs

    16 uur geleden

    Your stood in front of white cliffs. Is this a half hour long advert to promote the late Dame Vera Lynn’s greatest hits cd?

  83. xclimatexcoldxx


    16 uur geleden

    If lies didn't exist, neither would this video. To be clearer, all product placement would be genuinely what the person loves, paid or not.

  84. xclimatexcoldxx


    17 uur geleden

    P Law: That's all you need!

  85. themadmallard


    17 uur geleden

    @16:00 i dont think thats the rationale. I think its actually a different issue altogether when it comes to the online spaces like NLcameras. Its because a contributor who uploads and also has some kind of advert content in what they upload are actually in a small way becoming a sub-platform to the platform, in this case NLcameras. This sets up a direct competition relationship at a certain level. I think this is the reason why these are treated differently. the other entertainment outlets dont take the shape of an advertising company in the way Google/alphabet, or any of these companies that sell your info to advertisers do. not making a case that its right, just pointing out something.

  86. Sebastian Sean Crow

    Sebastian Sean Crow

    18 uur geleden

    11:53 is that... a mech mod???

  87. Trueflight Silverwing

    Trueflight Silverwing

    18 uur geleden

    Totally agree with everything in this. I have to be more upfront about advertising to my 2k NLcameras followers than giant multibillion dollar corporations. That seems strange to me.

  88. Miles Harrison

    Miles Harrison

    18 uur geleden

    28:06 - Ohhhh, after 28 mins I get why this was filmed somewhere in the SOUTH-EAST of England... Trollery aside, one of your best videos Tom... Keep it up!

  89. Aidan5f


    18 uur geleden

    11:48 Tom dies

  90. Stephen White

    Stephen White

    18 uur geleden

    Seriously, I'm not from the UK, can you tell me which one is Ant ans which one is Dec?

  91. Thomas Herbort

    Thomas Herbort

    18 uur geleden

    Is this Tom from myspace?

  92. Nad Senoj

    Nad Senoj

    19 uur geleden

    Everyone else does... This is stupid. The Phrase " AND NOW A WORD FROM OUR SPONSORS " Is synonymous with television! To imply that PAID AD SLOTS, are not a commonly understood thing is the height of ignorance.

  93. Stephen White

    Stephen White

    19 uur geleden

    "My usual apple ear buds"?

  94. Stephen White

    Stephen White

    19 uur geleden

    Here in Australia, we have a government broadcaster similar to the BBC called the ABC. We have had many competing commercial broadcasters for quite some time but the ABC has a similar history regarding advertising. I have always wondered whether it is advertising for a radio station to play music, that a listener may choose to purchase.

  95. Mirza Razak

    Mirza Razak

    19 uur geleden

    South Korea has been very strict about this, look it up Tom. It's really interesting.

  96. Jorrus Kurren

    Jorrus Kurren

    19 uur geleden

    I love your mock ads! They're dry comedy gold to my tired brain

  97. dawfydd


    19 uur geleden

    Lovely, but we all know the big companies have too much control to ever let anything like this happen.

  98. Meticulous The Great

    Meticulous The Great

    19 uur geleden

    Seeing tom vape was something I do not want to see ever again.

  99. The WhiteTrashPanda

    The WhiteTrashPanda

    20 uur geleden

    12:28 "It's time to play: IS THIS AN ADVERT?!" * *cue actual ad* * lmfao well played, NLcameras.

  100. Vodoyem


    20 uur geleden

    I don't think it makes a difference for a viewer whether the product in a video is paid promotion or honest positive (unpaid) endorsement of an influencer. That makes things even more complicated. What about paid review which results in negative opinion? Same goes for product placement- what if people simply like cliffs behind you at the end of the video and will want to travel there? How is it different for a vierwer if a local tourism agency paid you for filming there to promote the area?