Brain Clutter

March 12, 2007

Blog monetization: SponsoredReviews official launch

Filed under: blogging, web, WordPress — brainclutter @ 3:17 pm

Not that you’re allowed to shill, er, I mean blog-for-profit on WordPress (unless you upgrade to VIP status), but if you could you might be interested to know that another “pay per post” service launched today called SponsoredReviews. This is another site bloggers can use to make a little cash on the web (others include PayPerPost, CreamAid, Blogvertise, etc.).

I’ve signed up for numerous sites like these just because I find the concept interesting and like to see what kinds of companies will pay bloggers to advertise for them. Sponsored Reviews definitely has a tidy interface and it’s extremely easy to navigate. Apparently they use what they call a “hybrid” system so bloggers can find advertisers and vice versa and they pay out bi-weekly using Paypal, which is a bonus. Aside from that, I couldn’t find much else that differentiates it from the crowd, however, the more sites there are like these, the more accessible blogging for profit becomes.

Now looking at it from the WordPress angle, I’m curious to know why WP chooses a different approach to blogging-for-profit than say LiveJournal or MovableType. The fact that Blogger supports advertising is a given since they ultimately want you to use Google AdSense to make THEM money (I believe Google makes way more cash per click than you do by showing their ads).

Does WP not support pay per post because ultimately you’re making money by piggy-backing on their bandwidth and hard work, delivering one of the best FREE platforms around? Is it a philisophical in that they don’t want to “dilute the quality of the Web” with a bunch of falsely-positive reviews (because people were paid to send a false message)? Would they ever support it if they could find a way to monetize it for themselves? I’m actually not sure how WP makes enough money to maintain their servers by offering such a “too good to be true” service like their free blogs. I know they charge a fairly large monthly fee for VIP status but I’m unsure how many people they have signed up for that.

It’s all very interesting and I am curious to see how things will play out in the future.



  1. I hate these “Pay Per Post” services as you call them; the WordPress guys seem honest enough and would never support something like this.

    A company is basically trying to pay you to lie for them, that’s really the short of it. If you don’t write a good review you’re not getting paid, so you’re selling out your credibility to be a shill. Besides the fact its despicable, and possibly illegal, there is enough shills out there already we don’t need services like this diluting the internet even more.

    But information travels fast on the Internet, faster then ever before, so everything will likely work itself out anyways; most shills will be discovered before they do much damage. Besides its not hard to find a shill when some guys blog consists of glowing reviews of everything that is at the same time being referred to as raw sewage elsewhere on the web.

    Comment by Nazgum — March 13, 2007 @ 4:12 am

  2. forgot to close the a tag, some web developer I am =p ehe; the second shill link goes to'Gara

    Comment by Nazgum — March 13, 2007 @ 4:14 am

  3. For some reason that second link won’t work even though it’s proper if you run a search for Maureen O’Gara on WikiPedia. Maybe it’s the ‘ symbol in the URL.

    As for the original part, I agree with you to a point but I think these services can provoke somewhat of a legitimate response from bloggers, though you’re probably right in that the majority will end up lying to people just to make a quick buck.

    Let’s pretend I bought a Wii and loved it and Nintendo happened to be running a pay per post campaign (not that they ever would… maybe I should use Sony as an example :P). I don’t see any harm in writing a positive review for the Wii and getting paid for it but I suppose it takes away from the original spirit of blogging. People used to blog for the sake of blogging now the focus is on blogging for profit.

    Look at almost every single popular blog out there… They make money somehow, whether it’s through sponsors, text link ads, or pay per post. It seems like advertising is the only way to make money in a c ommunications medium. It started on radio, then moved to tv, then onto the general internet, and now it’s in the blogs.

    I wonder if there is another way to actually generate income on the Web. There probably would be if we could make money on something other than products or services.

    Damn, I was always a fan of the Star Trek economic society but I doubt we’ll ever get there. Humans are just too damn greedy.

    Comment by brainclutter — March 13, 2007 @ 7:39 am

  4. yea but the existing method of writing a blog and receiving income from the surrounding ads means users are enjoying the content you blog about to visit enough that the ads earn you income; this encourages you to write good and meaningful blog entries to attract and keep loyal readers.

    Earning cash directly for writing a blog post, from the company you are blogging about, is complete crap and I would personally boycott any blog I found to do so; If I wanted to read what Microsoft thought of their own products I would read one of their employees blogs, I don’t wish to do so from some random blogger who seems neutral but is secretly being paid.

    It will ultimately hurt the blogosphere and the companies which participate in such a scheme; but despite these schemes attempting to happen in the background its too easy to see through them so ultimately i think little harm will be done.

    So I better not start to see glowing Vista and Zune reviews on here *threaten*! We all know those products suck enough no one would blog positively about them without being paid to!

    Comment by Nazgum — March 13, 2007 @ 8:20 am

  5. ROFL — there definitely won’t be any Vista love here! 😛

    Being able to see through a shill blog is usually pretty easy, especially when you consider some of the wonky products advertisers pay bloggers to write about. Check this one out from SR (I won’t validate it with an actual link):

    Dream Manifestation Wizard

    Imagine if there was an exact scientific method to manifesting all of your dreams. For the first time in history, science is able to provide the evidence of what mystics and enlightened people have claimed through the ages. “Your thoughts create your reality and what you experience!”

    Use the Dream Manifestation Wizard™ is a new software program for Windows and Mac that supports and guides you in manifesting exactly what you want.

    How Does the Dream Manifestation Wizard™ Software Work?
    Once started, the Wizard will ask you what goal or dream you want to manifest in your life. The built-in ‘Dream Questionnaire’ can guide you by exploring your strengths and talents. It will help you focus on what you really desire.

    Once you know your dreams, you write them into a Dream Template. By adding related pictures and your own voice you are creating a multimedia event for your senses. This alone will make you feel excited and motivated.

    Next, you tell the Dream Manifestation Wizard™ how often you want to program your dream into your subconscious. Then, just, relax, sit back and work normally on your computer. The Dream Manifestation Wizard™, running in the background, will provide an audible cue – a gong – before it displays your multi-media Dream Template at the intervals you specified.

    Every time a Dream Template appears on you screen, you automatically place your attention on that dream, and therefore, begin to manifest it. Scientific studies have shown that by engaging your senses your attention ability expand tremendously.

    Intention + Attention = Manifestation

    The Dream Manifestation Wizard™ creates an exact blueprint in your subconscious of what you want to manifest. Your subconscious mind will immediately start to work on turning your dream into reality, applying the latest discoveries in quantum physics to shift and direct your attention toward new possibilities.”

    ROFL – I nearly pissed myself after reading that! 😛 How could anyone possibly write something positive about a “Dream Manifestation Wizard?!”

    Comment by brainclutter — March 13, 2007 @ 9:02 am

  6. sounds like one hell of a porn device =p

    Comment by Nazgum — March 13, 2007 @ 9:57 am

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