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Communication on Social Media: The Chiara Ferragni case.

Updated: Apr 3

Publication date: 19.03.2024

With the rise of social media, the way we communicate with the world and those around us has changed. We learn about a fact no longer by reading the newspaper, listening to the radio or television, but by reading a post on the Internet or downloading an online copy of a newspaper.

Is the cell phone our best ally and the tool that puts us in touch with the world: it lets us know about new trends, daily facts, the latest music releases and much more.

We can say that we are facing a very powerful medium, and in recent years those who work in the marketing world have understood its immense value and effectiveness.

To this day there are thousands of people who work exclusively on social media, achieving excellent profits and a high standard of living.

Many people underestimate how powerful this communication channel is and how much it can influence the viewers who are on the other side of a screen.

The recent case of Chiara Ferragni, a Milanese businesswoman who has been under investigation for aggravated fraud in recent months.

The fact dates back to last year and the promotion of Pandoro Balocco and Easter Eggs that sponsored her brand and provided that part of the proceeds would go to charity.

Reconstructing the Chiara Ferragni case

The Cuneo prosecutor's office has forwarded to the Milan prosecutor's office the investigation documents on the alleged fraud attributed to Chiara Ferragni.

The young influencer has been fined by the Antitrust for an unfair commercial practice that allegedly emerged in her collaboration with the confectionery company Balocco.

The Miscommunication

Chiara Ferragni is being investigated for using miscommunication by incentivizing her 30 million followers to purchase pandoro.

Leaving to believe that a part of the proceeds of each pandoro would contribute to a maxi donation for the purchase of two machines for the pediatric department of the Regina Margherita Hospital in Turin.

The first to investigate the young woman was the Antitrust Authority, pointing out that it is possible that the proceeds from this collaboration exceeded EUR 1 million, despite the donation to the hospital.

Upon investigating the transactions carried out by these two organisations, it became known that the amount to be donated to charity had already been paid out and decided regardless of the proceeds.

In this situation, we are talking about aggravated fraud, because whenever the fraud takes place on a telematics platform, there is the aggravating circumstance of the minor defence, because there would be no way for the purchasers to verify what they had bought.

If the offence is confirmed, the businesswoman faces a penalty of imprisonment of one to five years and a fine of EUR 309 to EUR 1,549.

Opportunities and risks

This case shows us the other side of the social coin and that is why it is important to be aware of the risks and that even young influencers, with 30 million followers, are not in control.

Chiara Ferragni is in the Italian media spotlight because of this incident, many collaborations have been refused and the young woman has lost many work contracts. Her public image is becoming tarnished and her castle is crumbling, because that is the real power of social media: they give you a lot in a short time, but they can also take it away from you in a flash.

Social media are an integral part of our lives just think that an average person spende 15% of their time on social network.

However, it is important to control and watch out for young people in particular because they could have a really powerful tool in their hands and without the right rules there could be serious consequences.


I would like to emphasise the importance and weight that is given to everything that is put online. Those who work on social media must be aware that there is another person on the other side of the screen who may receive the message communicated differently.

After Chiara Ferragni's case, we have heard about 'communicative clarity' and many of her colleagues have started to specify in their videos when it is a collaboration and when the products shown are not meant to incentivise sales.

This incident has opened everyone's eyes to how what we see is not always the truth and how important it is to be clear and direct in order to promote wrong messages.


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