From the annals of oenography…
Above: The facade of the TTB offices on G Street in Washington, D.C. (image via Google Maps).
Earlier this week, the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau issued a circular laying out guidelines for regulation of wine industry-generated social media.
The move is significant in part because the document clearly states that the agency considers wine industry-generated social media — social networks, video sharing, blogs, microblogs, etc. — to be a form of advertising. And as such, it will be regulated by the TTB.
I found this informative post by a Napa law firm in which the authors spell out the impact that this policy will have on wine industry members who use social media in promoting their brands.
The authors of the post also point out that according to TTB policy, content posted by consumers on wine industry social media is also subject to regulation. Ultimately, this could lead to wine industry members being held responsible for questionable content posted by users of their platforms.
[See the comment section for a clarification on this last point.]