The following is a paid post

As you have probably noticed, I’m not big on advertisements on this blog. I have some Amazon links on the right side of the front page included in the books randomly chosen from my Library Thing account, but that’s about it. But what if I could make a few extra bucks without upsetting the overall layout of the site and through an activity that is in line with my interests?

The site ReviewMe launched recently with the goal of paying bloggers for posts on specified products, sites and services. To try out the service, they are offering people the opportunity to make some money by posting an entry about ReviewMe itself. So that is what I am doing here. Above I said “through an activity that is in line with my interests” whereby I meant that I regularly point people to Web sites on this blog and offer commentary so to do so on yet another site or service seems in line with what I do around here anyway. If there is full disclosure about the fact that I am getting paid for a review, does that dilute the post’s value? More generally speaking, does my involvement in such an activity dilute the value of my blog on the whole?

ReviewMe has some guidelines that should help in deciding whether this practice is problematic or not (or the extent to which it might be). The service makes it clear to advertisers that they may not require a positive review. They explain why advertisers should not see that as a problem though:

We do not allow advertisers to require a positive review. The vast majority of reviews are measuredly positive, although many do contain constructive criticism. We view this as a bonus: how else can you quickly and cheaply get feedback on a product or service from influencers?

If you sign up, the system figures out how much you will be paid for each post you accept to write. This sum seems to be determined by influencer status based on Technorati rankings and such metrics.

Then you sit back and wait until advertisers find you and offer you the chance to blog about their product. You are not required to accept these offers so it is still up to the blogger to decide whether a review fits one’s interests and blog content.

ReviewMe requires bloggers to be explicit about the fact that the post is in exchange for payment.

One question is what I noted above: How, if at all, does this influence the value of a blog or a particular post? The other question I have about all this is whether it will succeed. That is, I’m curious to see whether ReviewMe will succeeds in attracting advertisers for purchasing product reviews.

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