A top YouTube toy reviewer is facing accusations of misleading preschoolers into watching ads by not disclosing sponsorship deals. Ryan ToysReview — one of the most popular YouTube channels, with billions of views and more than 21 million subscribers — features an excitable 7-year-old named Ryan unboxing toys and playing with them and going on kid-friendly adventures. But a watchdog group alleges Ryan ToysReview has raked in its profits under "deceptive native advertising" through product placement that youngsters are not able to discern as a sales pitch — a violation of Federal Trade Commission law. In a complaint filed to the FTC dated Aug. The target audience for the videos is children under 5 years old, "a particularly vulnerable class" who are not yet able to distinguish between commercials and other content, Truth in Advertising adds. The channel, which has endorsements with a variety of companies, including Hardee's, Colgate and Chuck E. Cheese, does not always disclose that its content is sponsored, Truth in Advertising wrote, and if it does, the disclosures are often "inadequate" — mentioned in voiceovers that last for less than two seconds or flash in text on the screen that many in Ryan ToysReview's audience are too young to read.
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The channel usually releases a new video every day. The Verge has described the channel as "a mash-up of personal vlog and 'unboxing' video, a blend of innocent childhood antics and relentless, often overwhelming consumerism. Before going live on YouTube, the family replaced their real-life surname Guan with the on-screen surname Kaji. In , Kaji's parents signed a deal with PocketWatch , a startup children's media company that was founded in by Chris Williams and Albie Hecht. PocketWatch does the marketing and merchandise for Ryan's YouTube channels. Kaji has influenced the toy industry; his toy reviews, especially those which get millions of views, will sometimes affect the toy's sales. The Ryan's World channel has been listed in and as the highest-earning YouTube channel by Forbes.
Can young viewers tell the difference between advertisements and product reviews on the popular YouTube channel Ryan ToysReview? The watchdog group Truth in Advertising says no. In video after video, the host tries out new toys, usually with enthusiasm. The channel has racked up more than 30 billion views.
Skip to Content. Parents' Ultimate Guide to Support our work! Parent reviews for Ryan Toys Review. Common Sense says Popular unboxing vids are heavy on the commercialism. Based on our expert review. Based on reviews. Based on 94 reviews. Add your rating.