Should 'paid for' blog mentions be disclosed? Douwegate
In the past I have defended blogging from accusations that many leading bloggers take undisclosed payments for mentions. The accusations have always been non-specific, and I reckon that most bloggers care more for their integrity. But is this changing?
It's my view that a line has to be drawn between editorial content (a writer plugging what they want to plug) and sponsored content (a writer being paid to plug something). I don't accept payment for mentions on this blog, but I'm of the view that any paid mentions MUST be disclosed and flagged as such, if they are to be done at all (and I'm not sure that they should).
Douglas Blyde (www.intoxicatingprose.com) has just twittered that food bloggers have recently been offered £50 per video to post a series of three Douwe Egberts videos. And a number of them have accepted. That's shocking in itself (do they respect their readers' intelligence at all?). But what's even more shocking is that there's a surprising lack of disclosure.
The Douwegate hall of shame includes the following: