The Most Ethical Product Review
Every scumbag on the internet these days is an “influencer” that lacks credibility and a basic understanding of how to disclose how they got a product, what the transaction looks like and basically really terrible negotiation skills. Influencers are not business people, and it shows.
Most reviews are compensated and amount to little more than “that’s neat” and either returning the product or putting it on a shelf. Fingers crossed your affiliate marketing link generates itty bitty sales commissions.
Rather than hate on these folks, I actually want to talk about… a disclaimer.
A few months ago while looking at streaming gear reviews (I take my Zoom call quality wayyyy too seriously) I found a site called PC Perspectives, www.pcper.com but to be specific I looked at this article.
I was shocked to reach the end of the article. It looked like a formatted boilerplate schema for how to write and disclose information for a review. It looked like everything I never knew I wanted all right there. They felt trustworthy.
“Sincerity — if you can fake that, you’ve got it made.” — George Burn
Now you are probably thinking about why I am so impressed with this, you probably ignore terms of service and all the fine print. You’re probably jaded and know but don’t care that you are always being manipulated to a sale. You probably don’t actually care where you product reviews come from unless they support a confirmation bias so you can spend money on fifteen sizes of spatulas.
But here’s the deal, I’m actually sitting on a side project. I have little interest in reviewing gear as we now know it, I am do a project that is not going to be monetized because I have a pretty good day job already. This is about doing things with integrity. Being honest about what you actually spend your money on, there is no coercion.
So that’s it, I have this feeling like I learned a valuable lesson on how to tell people the truth about what I am talking about without feeling “selly” and maybe let people know, that like anything you read on the internet, it’s just one rambling fool’s opinion, take it for what it’s worth.