FTC: Ashton Kutcher Will Not be Investigated

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Looks as though the newest "Two and a Half Men" star Ashton Kutcher dodged a potentially messy bullet.

The Federal Trade Commission has announced that it will not be investigating Kutcher in connection with alleged improprieties stemming from his recent guest-editing gig at "Details" magazine. The commission posted the succinct and unambiguous message on their official Twitter page: "“The F.T.C. is not and has no plans to investigate Ashton Kutcher.”

Earlier, Richard Cleland, assistant director of the division of advertising practices at the FTC told The New York Times that Kutcher's recent guest-editing stint raised some eyebrows. It seems that the issue - which touts several up-and-coming tech firms - never contained any mention that Kutcher is an investor in several of these companies.

“If you’re out there promoting individual products that you have a specific investment in, it needs to be disclosed,” Cleland told the Times. “If you have a significant economic investment that is not otherwise apparent, that may potentially affect the credibility of your endorsement, and I see that as a potential problem.”

Although the FTC hasn't yet questioned Kutcher, Cleland added that an investigation is "certainly a possibility." 

Details Editor in Chief Dan Peres argues that Kutcher's involvement was stated in Kutcher's "Editor's Letter," and that the magazine stands behind him.

“If you read Ashton’s editors letter, you’ll see he succeeded in his mission to get people to talk about and even criticize this social issue," says Peres. "I stand by how we communicated Ashton’s involvement with some of the companies included in our coverage and remain extremely proud of the work we did on this project.”

“I can assure you that Ashton is not looking at our 500,000 readers as an opportunity to feather his nest,” he added.

The issue did contain a line saying that Kutcher "puts his money where his mouth is, backing many of the companies he champions here" in the introduction to the piece, titled "The New Titans of Tech."

Selected Reading: New York Times, Details, Gawker

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