Where is your information coming from?
Even though it’s been a year since I’ve written in this blog, I still get offers of sponsorship or “partnership” with other sites, services and products. Most of the time, it’s to create some sort of linking relationship: If I put their site on my links, they’ll put my site on their links and presumably, the traffic to both of our sites equilibrates to a higher level than ever before.
But more recently, I got an email from a company asking me if I would be willing to write reviews on other websites and to post my reviews of those websites in my blog:
I’m Joy from XXXXXXX.com.
I would like to know if by any chance you would be interested in getting paid to publish reviews of products and websites on your blog http://evidencebasedfitness.blogspot.com/.
If you are interested please let us know the amount of money you want in order to publish a review by clicking the following link: XXXXXXXXX
As soon as you do that we’ll start sending you paid review proposals from our customers.
The XXXXXXXX Team”
The customer of this company, is presumably a website that is looking to increase its traffic. And the way in which the company can help that website is by paying blogs to write about their customer.
It seems like a fairly straight-forward method of advertisement, only there’s a minor catch: There’s no obligation on a blogger’s part to declare any conflict of interest when they write a review in their blog. And this is where things get murky.
I decided to take a look at their offer–What do I have to lose? And here’s the kicker:
If I’m willing to NOT declare my conflict of interest, I can make much more money from this company. If I write an endorsement of a website on MY blog and conceal the fact that I was paid to write the endorsement from my readers, I can make more money.
Now, I haven’t written a research review here in a year. I don’t know when I will write another one still. My blog’s purpose is not to review other people’s websites, and I don’t intend on changing that. So, I’m not overly inclined to change my relatively inactive blog to make a few bucks. But, you have to admit, this system is a pretty… interesting one.
Where do you think your information is coming from?