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Instagram pledges to tackle hidden advertising by celebrities after CMA probe



Instagram has pledged to fix the issue of “hidden advertising” by influencers on its app following a probe by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The Facebook-owned app will now ask its UK users to confirm if they have been paid to promote a product, making it “much harder” for users to post ads without labeling them as such.

Instagram will also expand its paid partnership tool, which allows users to mark posts as sponsored and indicate the brand behind the post, to all of its users in the UK. The service was previously limited to celebrities who use the app.

The app has also pledged to use its algorithms to scan content for any signs that celebrities and other users may have posted adverts without disclosing that they were paid for the post.

The changes will apply to all Instagram users in the UK as well as anyone who targets their posts at Britons through the app.

The changes come after 16 celebrities agreed last year to improve their disclosure about adverts on Instagram.

Celebrities such as musicians Ellie Goulding and Rita Ora and models Alexa Chung and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley gave the CMA formal commitments that they would disclose any brand deals online.

The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has also forced many celebrities to remove Instagram posts after followers complained to the watchdog that they were not properly marked as adverts.

Celebrities including former Love Island contestants Olivia Buckland and Molly Mae Hague have had Instagram posts banned by the ASA over failing to disclose they had been paid to post them.

Andrea Coscelli, the chief executive of the CMA, said: “For too long, major platforms have shied away from taking responsibility for hidden advertising on their site. So, this commitment to tackle hidden adverts and overhaul the way people post on Instagram – making it difficult for users to ignore the law – is a welcome step forward.”

“These changes mean there will be no excuse for businesses to overlook how their brands are being advertised either – making life a lot harder for those who are not upfront and honest with their followers.”

Failing to label posts properly may lead followers to believe that an endorsement is a star’s own view and to trust a product recommended by someone they admire, the CMA has said previously.

Instagram will have to regularly update the CMA on its progress. The regulator said it will continue to investigate the practices of other social media platforms and push for changes where needed.

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Celebrities voting for the first time in the 2020 presidential election




Hollywood stars have been some of the most vocal American citizens stressing the significance of voting in the 2020 presidential election. While they’re doing so in a very public way on social media, some have revealed this year is the first time they’ve ever cast ballots.

Some celebrities voting for the first time have lived in the United States all their lives, while others who were born in other countries are exercising their right to vote after having been granted U.S. citizenship.

Find out which celebrities are first-time voters below.

Selena Gomez

Selena Gomez is one of the seemingly countless celebrities to have cast ballots for the 2020 presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. The 28-year-old singer shared a few pics of her voting experience on Instagram last week.


Selena Gomez announced she's voting for the first time ever in the 2020 presidential election. Unlike many stars in Hollywood, she has not publicly endorsed a candidate.

Selena Gomez announced she’s voting for the first time ever in the 2020 presidential election. Unlike many stars in Hollywood, she has not publicly endorsed a candidate.
(Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images)

“Honestly, I’m not ashamed to say this,” she said during an episode of “Voting Power Hour,” per Buzzfeed. “… This was my first time.”

Gomez said that in the past, she “never felt” like her vote mattered. This year her perspective changed.

“Every vote counts,” the Disney Channel alum said. “Some people get in their head, and they’re like, ‘Oh, well what does it matter?'”

“My main focus has been this right now,” said the star, who has not publicly endorsed a candidate. “You can tell on my social media and everything, obviously, I’m super invested in this right now. It’s been good. I feel hopeful.”

Ryan Reynolds 

Actor Ryan Reynolds was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, but revealed on social media he’s voted for the first time in a U.S. presidential election. 

Canadian Ryan Reynolds revealed his decision to vote for the first time on Instagram with a photo alongside his wife, Blake Lively.

Canadian Ryan Reynolds revealed his decision to vote for the first time on Instagram with a photo alongside his wife, Blake Lively.
(Getty Images)

The “Deadpool” actor confirmed he voted early on Instagram with a picture alongside his wife, Blake Lively. 

“This is my first time voting in America. I’d like to thank my wife Blake for making my first time so gentle and loving. It was super scary at first, then exciting and now I’m a little tired. But proud. #VoteEarly,” the 43-year-old joked on Instagram. In the photo he posted, the actor is holding his mail-in ballot. 


Meanwhile, Lively also poked fun at his first-time experience writing, “It was Ryan’s first time. He was understandably scared. It all happened so fast. Like, REALLY fast. He wept. I pretended to weep. Then he called all his friend [sic]. #voteearly.”

Reynolds said back in 2016 he wished he could have voted then. The star has since obtained dual citizenship, the New York Times reported in 2018. 

Snoop Dogg

The rapper announced in June his plans to vote for the first time this year. 

Snoop Dogg admitted he didn't vote in past elections because he thought he wasn't allowed to for having a criminal record.

Snoop Dogg admitted he didn’t vote in past elections because he thought he wasn’t allowed to for having a criminal record.
(John Parra/Getty Images for Bud Light)

“For many years it had me brainwashed thinking that you couldn’t vote because you had a criminal record,” the rapper — who has gun and drug convictions going back to his high school days, though he says his record’s been expunged — revealed on the Real 92.3.

Snoop, who has been a vocal critic of President Trump, explained his decision comes from wanting to make a difference.

“I can’t talk about it and not be about it,” he said.


Kelsea Ballerini 

Kelsea Ballerini announced to her Instagram followers that this year is her first time casting a vote in a presidential election, something she admitted she wasn’t particularly proud of.

Kelsea Ballerini admitted she was embarrassed to reveal 2020 is the first year she's cast a vote.

Kelsea Ballerini admitted she was embarrassed to reveal 2020 is the first year she’s cast a vote.
(Image Group LA/ABC via Getty Images)

“..embarrassingly but honestly, this is my first time voting. Im not proud of it, but my naivety has kept me sheltered through a lot of my young adult life,” she wrote. “BUT. As I’ve listened and learned, I’ve realized its our responsibility and privilege to use our voices to establish what we as human beings with beating hearts want to see in this country for not only ourselves…but our friends, neighbors, strangers, and future generations.”

“America stands for so many beautiful things and I hope (and vote) that it continues to evolve and grow to be a place where EVERYONE is protected, respected, and given equal rights and opportunity,” she added.

“Left the polls feeling really empowered by exercising my right and showing up for what I believe in and the change I want to see. I encourage everyone to do the same. 🗳”

The country singer posted a photo of herself pointing at an “I voted” sticker on her nose.

Jana Kramer and Mike Caussin

Jana Kramer and Mike Caussin are an open book when it comes to issues in their marriage. The singer revealed on Instagram that the pair voted for the first time in 2020.

Jana Kramer and Mike Caussin are an open book when it comes to issues in their marriage. The singer revealed on Instagram that the pair voted for the first time in 2020.
(Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage)

Jana Kramer also took to social media to reveal she and her husband Mike Caussin are first-time voters. With a selfie of the couple wearing face masks, Kramer said this year she started feeling differently about exercising her right.


“I hate to admit this but I am anyways….This is the first time I’ve ever voted🙈. The first time Mike has ever voted. I don’t know why but I always felt like my vote didn’t matter,” Kramer’s social media post begins.

“But this year I just felt differently and I know more than ever it does matter. Are you going to vote? And not gonna lie I always wanted to feel Instagram cool with the I voted sticker and they “ran out” so @vistaprint mask for the win but let’s be honest voting is more important than the sticker 😂”

Tan France

“Queer Eye” star Tan France celebrated his U.S. citizenship this past June, and when announcing the news, he vowed to register to vote the same day so that he could be a part of “the change I wish to see in OUR nation.”

Tyler the Creator

The 29-year-old rapper used his Twitter account to discuss his decision to vote, noting it was his first time doing so.

In a two-minute video, the musician told viewers, “I see he light,” and urged his fans to “go to them polls and cast a f—ing vote,” according to People magazine.

Cobie Smulders

Just one month out from the presidential election, Cobie Smulders informed her fans she cast a ballot.

Cobie Smulders was able to vote this year after becoming a U.S. citizen. She was born in Canada.

Cobie Smulders was able to vote this year after becoming a U.S. citizen. She was born in Canada.


The 38-year-old actress, born in Canada, became a U.S. citizen in September. In early October, she shared a selfie in a white t-shirt accessorized with an “I voted” sticker.

“Boom. Have you yet? Feels good. 🇺🇸 @iamavoter @joebiden @kamalaharris,” she captioned the pic.

Courtney Stodden

Courtney Stodden shared a revealing picture of herself to inform her Instagram followers she voted for the first time this week.

“I voted for the first time in my life. For me, this is a vote for compassion and empathy – human rights and love 💗 #firsttimevoter,” she captioned a photo.

The pic shows the lingerie model puckering up for a kiss with an “I voted” sticker over her lips.

Gregg Sulkin

The 28-year-old British actor confirmed 2020 is his “first time voting as an American citizen.”

He reflected on the significance of this year’s race, writing, “what an important election to have a voice.”

“Make yours count. Go vote 🇺🇸,” he captioned a picture of himself holding his voting sticker.

Kanye West

Kanye West, 43, stunned fans on Independence Day when he revealed his decision to run for president in this year’s election against President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden.


Kanye West with daughter North West in London, England. North, 7, rocks the rapper's 'Vote Kanye' merch.

Kanye West with daughter North West in London, England. North, 7, rocks the rapper’s ‘Vote Kanye’ merch.
(Mark Boland/Mark Boland/Getty Images)

In an interview with Forbes shortly after launching his campaign, Kim Kardashian’s husband confirmed he registered to vote in Wyoming and that it would be his first time voting.

In July, Fox News obtained the 43-year-old rapper’s Statement of Candidacy document filed with the Federal Election Commission, which lists his party affiliation as “BDY,” which stands for “Birthday Party.” His committee’s name is also listed on the document as “Kanye 2020.”

However, the “Jesus Walks” rapper will not appear on ballots in all 50 states because his campaign was launched late and therefore missed some ballot deadlines.


In a recent interview on Joe Rogan’s podcast, West said his 2020 bid was inspired by God.

“It was something that God put in my heart back in 2015. A few days before the MTV awards it hit me in the shower,” West shared. “When I first thought of it, I just started laughing to myself and all this joy came over my body, through my soul.”

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From Kiara Advani to Ranveer Singh, 10 Indian celebrities whose real names you probably don’t know




Indian celebrities are known to alter their real names or their spelling as a stepping stone to success. This can be credited to reasons varying from numerology to a producer’s decision. However, some of these alterations are well known. For example, it’s common knowledge that Akshay Kumar’s actual name is Rajiv Bhatia, while Katrina Kaif was born as Katrina Turquotte. However, Indian celebrities are full of secrets and surprises. And so, we’ve got you 10 other Indian celebrities whose real names you might not be aware of.

Real names of 10 Indian celebrities that you may not know

1. Prabhas

Having done only 19 films in his career, Prabhas has achieved superstardom unlike any other Indian celebrity. With box-office successes like the Baahubali franchise, Prabhas has inspired fans all over the country. In fact, his most recent bi-lingual film Saaho went on to be the highest-grossing Indian film in 2019. And yet, it’s a lesser-known fact that one of the biggest stars of our country is actually named Venkata Satyanarayana Prabhas Raju Uppalapati, according to Indian Express.

2. Ranveer Singh

Ranveer Singh is a powerhouse among all Indian celebrities. His energy and acting chops are enough to blow all competition from the water. And if that wasn’t enough, he is one half of the power couple that is DeepVeer, thanks to his nuptials with Deepika Padukone. Another secret fact about the Gully Boy actor is that his full name is actually Ranveer Singh Bhavnani, as per Times of India.

3. Shilpa Shetty

Shilpa Shetty may not be on our silver screens anymore. However, she still manages to grace our timelines ever so often with a healthy new recipe or tips on how she stays fit. However, back when she was trying to make it in the industry, an astrologer advised Shetty’s mother that her real name i.e. Ashwini should be changed to Shilpa to bring her more luck in her career. Looks like the stars aligned for this evergreen beauty, just like many other Indian celebrities, according to Indian Express.

4. Kiara Advani

Kiara Advani has stolen the hearts of audiences across the country in a very short time since she entered the industry. Her portrayal of Preeti in Kabir Singh made her quite the household name. However, what’s not known about her is that she too is among those Indian celebrities who changed their real names. Kiara Advani’s actual name is Alia Advani. However, a report in Pinkvilla states that Salman Khan advised her to change it to not be overshadowed by the star that is Alia Bhatt.

5. Anushka Shetty

Earlier we told you about how Prabhas is among those Indian celebrities who changed their real names. However, an even lesser-known fact is that his Baahubali co-star is also sailing in the same boat. Indian Express claims that Anushka’s real name is actually Sweety Shetty. The report further suggests that even now, her co-stars, directors and producers still refer to her as Sweety.

6. Amitabh Bachchan

One of the most legendary Indian celebrities is Amitabh Bachchan. Besides his onscreen persona, even his voice has gravitas. However, it seems like the actor’s father Harishvansh Rai Bachchan had an idea about that. He had previously named his son Inquilaab Srivastava, after the patriotic slogan “Inquilaab Zindabad”. However, his name was later changed to Amitabh Bachchan, as per Indian Express.

7. Tabu

With Suitable Boy having released on Netflix recently, Tabu blew our minds once again with her forbidden romance opposite Ishaan Khatter. While we don’t have any clues about the secret that makes her evergreen, we can let you in on another little secret. Her real name is actually Tabassum Hashmi Khan, Indian Express reports.

8. John Abraham

John Abraham is a lot of things. Action hero, a hulk among Indian celebrities and a complete petrolhead. But you probably knew about these things. What you may not know, however, is that John’s real name is Farhan Abraham. He chose to switch it to John as that is what his father used to call him.

9. Jackie Shroff

Jackie Shroff aka Apna Bidu has a style that no other Indian celebrity can match. However, his real name is Jai Kishan Kakubhai Shroff. The actor’s son also followed suit. While we know him as the parkour-abled Tiger Shroff, his real name is actually Jai Hemant Shroff.

10. Preity Zinta

Preity Zinta is our forever #WomanCrushWednesday. And we’ve been loving seeing a lot more of her now that IPL is back in season and the Punjab XI Kings are playing well. Recently, we even told you about all the multi-crore properties she owns. However, a basic detail you may not know about this dimpled actress is that her actual name is Preetam Zinta Singh.

How many of these surprised you?


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How Did Celebrities React To the Song’s Use in a Political Campaign Ad?




Musician Taylor Swift has always used her art to express herself. After years of remaining famously quiet on the subject of politics, she voiced support for Democratic party candidates across the board. Swift has since come out against U.S. President Donald Trump repeatedly, most notably on Twitter.

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift | Image Group LA via Getty Images

RELATED: Taylor Swift vs. Donald Trump: Every Time the Singer Has Pushed Back Against the President

Swift showed why she decided to be more politically active in her documentary Miss Americana. The film ended with an original song, “Only the Young,” which directly speaks to young voters. Ahead of the 2020 U.S. presidential election, the song was used in an ad for the Joe Biden/Kamala Harris ticket. Discover how other celebrities responded.

Nina Dobrev

Actor Nina Dobrev is perhaps best known for her roles in the CW teen drama series The Vampire Diaries or the short-lived sitcom Fam. She and Swift don’t appear to run in the same (very famous) circles, but Dobrev did attend a concert of the singer’s in Los Angeles in 2015.

Like many other celebrities, Dobrev has been active in trying to get her fans to vote — and, specifically, to vote blue. She even appeared in a Funny or Die sketch mocking Melania Trump. Of the ad using “Only the Young,” Dobrev wrote, “If this doesn’t get you, i don’t know what will.”

‘Teen Wolf’ stars

Another actor with a supernatural credit on their resume, Dylan O’Brien, also joined the conversation. O’Brien starred in the MTV series Teen Wolf and is also known for his role in the Maze Runner film franchise. And while he and Swift aren’t friends, they do have a loose connection.

“THIS IS WHY WE STAN!!!!!!!” tweeted O’Brien. This came just one day after the actor tagged his reported longtime crush (and Swift’s close friend), Selena Gomez, in a challenge, which she responded to. Notably, Gomez can be seen in the video in question and has, like O’Brien and Swift, been actively encouraging her fans to vote in 2020.

O’Brien’s co-star on Teen Wolf, Colton Haynes, got in on the action. Haynes is also known for starring in seasons of the CW superhero series Arrow and his recurring role in American Horror Story: Cult. What a powerful video,” he tweeted of the ad. “I’m in tears & it’s not even noon yet.”

‘Glee’ actors

Another set of former castmates enjoyed the song’s use. Jenna Ushkowitz, who portrayed Tina Cohen-Chang in the hit musical dramedy series Glee, tweeted, “Oh boy. First cry of the day, 10:32am. @taylorswift13 It must’ve been so scary deciding to use your voice in this way, but its the best. THANK YOU.”

Also adding their voice to the chorus was Kevin McHale, who played Artie Abrams in Glee. “The good sis,” he wrote, tagging Swift. McHale and Ushkowitz host a Glee rewatch podcast together, and during an August 2020 episode, McHale noted that the cast “had hung out with Taylor a lot” during the show’s run.

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