Saturday, May 12, 2007

Paid-for reviews

Did you ever read a review and have the impression that the author got paid by the game company or site he was reviewing? You know, that fake enthusiastic tone that stinks 3 miles against the wind, and the final review score being much higher than on all other sites. Or don't you believe those exist? I recently got the following e-mail:
Hello, I'm the owner of [site name removed] and I'm interested in purchasing a review of my site on your blog. Basically I would like you to write a 200-300 word story about my site or MMORPG auctions in general and mention my site with a link back to it. If this is something you would be interested in, please let me know.
Well, I must admit that is one step above the people that try to get links to their gold-selling sites by adding comment spam to my blog, I have to remove several of those every week. But in spite of not really being a journalist, I feel that offers like that hurt my journalistic integrity. I'm not going to do it, I didn't even reply to that mail. If I wanted to profit from the large secondary MMORPG market, I'd put up Google Adsense advertising, and not fake reviews. I don't judge people buying or selling virtual currency, but this being such a highly controversial topic I don't want to be seen taking sides by getting into business with the gold sellers.

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