The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has recently released guidelines concerning product reviews and social media sites (this includes blogs, Twitter, Facebook and other such sites). It is the recommendation of the FTC that it is a good ethical business practice to disclose the relationship between the webmaster and the company or product being reviewed. In accordance, I share the following information.
As President of Affiliate Advocacy I am a speaker at affiliate marketing industry conferences and trade shows. When speaking I normally receive passes to attend the conference or trade show however, I typically pay my own costs of travel. Even when not speaking I will often receive a free pass to attend but again I will usually pay my own cost of travel. I am also a paid speaker at other events but the payment received will never influence the opinion I hold or share. In fact, I am usually asked to speak because I speak freely and without prejudice or under influence of others.
As President of Affiliate Advocacy LLC and NY Affiliate Voice I also receive sponsorship from networks, merchants, affiliates, outsourced program managers and other industry consultants. Their sponsorships allow me to operate both Affiliate Advocacy LLC and NY Affiliate Voice. Both Affiliate Advocacy and NY Affiliate Voice are businesses I own and operate with the purpose of advocating for and improving the affiliate marketing industry. The sponsorship of an individual or company in no way influences any opinions, public or private, that I hold as it regards to individuals, companies, products or stores. The sponsorship is separate aspect. I am never swayed or influenced by sponsorships. I always try to advocate for the industry.
Other companies or merchants may also send me small gifts or products to sample or try. At times these are received in lieu of monetary compensation for consulting services. These products do not influence opinions expressed or held.
For complete disclosure it is important to mention that as an affiliate marketer with other sites, I may at times receive free or discounted products to try and review. All reviews I write and post on any of my websites are my actual opinions and are not paid opinions. My opinions are not influenced by the persons involved or based on what I did or didn’t pay. Opinions and reviews of products are based on my own actual product experience and opinion. An example would be a merchant sending me a sample of tea or coffee to try. I would taste it and then review it. If I am an affiliate of a company or store who sells a product or service I write about, I may provide a link to the merchant’s store that includes an identifying link that will give me a small commission if you choose to make a purchase. That commission helps to cover the cost of maintaining my websites.
My opinion is not based on whether I receive a product for free or pay for it. Nor is my opinion influenced by sponsorship of Affiliate Advocacy and/or NY Affiliate Voice
In short I am not ever paid or compensated to have a particular opinion, nor do I write any post or opinion in order to reward any individual or company. I am very much a speaker, and writer, of my own mind.