Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Bloggers' Ethic

Finally I decided to post this article that been kept it in my draft box for three months. I've been thinking about whether I should post this up, as I don't wanna cause any problems to myself too. But still, I've decided to post this up, just hoping that some changes can be made.

Sponsorship posts are over-flooding my instagram feed, and I saw lotsa 'bloggers' are posting shit loads of so called PRODUCT REVIEW. I really feel like banging the wall whenever I saw a blog which is full of ads and no matter what product they just keep on telling how good the product is. Like a friggin free cheerleader. (No offense to cheerleader this is just a metaphor)

But the problem is, how many of them really tested out the product and find the product good?

Anyone can accept sponsorship. It is not hard, seriously. Just hold a product, take a selfie and post it on instagram with captions that say how good the product is. But those who don't tell the truth shouldn't be considered as a 'blogger'. I categorize them as "Popular Users" aka The Red People. (Well some of them don't even have enough followers to fit in this category but lets just ignore them for now)

First, let me explain how does blogger and sponsors work together. Normally, sponsors will send a set of their product for bloggers to REVIEW, and depends on the blogger's readership, some fees might or might not be paid to the bloggers. There's nothing bad of being paid by cash or just sponsored items, all are good for the bloggers.

But recommending a bad product is not what a proper blogger should do.

People send you the product for a REVIEW, not to create an advertisement. Review means to tell your readers how do you find the product, the effect, the taste blah blah blah, NO LIMITATION of just to say good things. Of course, by saying good words it is a good deal for both sides (sponsors and bloggers), as sponsors will get increase of sales and blogger have good chance for future collaboration. But not until the extend where you fake it out and cheat on your readers.

I still remember once I attended a food review with some bloggers, and the dishes served are terrible. There was soft shell crab and salmon served, and I spitted the soft shell crab out straight after I took the first bite. It stinks like hell, the soft shell crab is not fresh nor the salmon do. The whole dining time, no one dares to touch these two dishes anymore. But when I got back and read a few bloggers' food review about that night, "The salmon are so fresh" "This is like the best soft shell crab I have ever had" blah blah blah. Describe until like the restaurant serves 5 stars hotel food like that.


Okay I guess this happened because the host restaurant is very smart. They didn't pay the bloggers who attended, but they set up 2 "Best Blog Entry Award" which is like 500 bucks. So obviously la someone cheated on their readers for the sake of few hundred bucks. What shocked me later is the review organizer, who so called herself as a blogger too, sent an email to me to warn me not to mention any bad thing about the food nor the dodgy location of the restaurant, but instead to highlight the point where the restaurant uses healthy and FRESH materials.

I clicked on the "TRASH" button right after finish reading that crap.

I am not a rich person at all and I do understand the importance of money. But I cherish my readers' trust. I know that I will feel guilty as hell if I lie to my readers, and there goes my blog's credibility and reputation. I always remind myself: "My readers are not Red People's fans, they are not young anymore. They can comprehend and differentiate what is a real recommendation and what is bullshit." That's why I carefully choose my sponsors and I only write for high quality products that I find it worth to be introduced to my readers.

I am not sure about other blogger's reader demographic, but no matter what, cheating is not correct. In my definition, a blog is a new source of news and information. Giving a fake good review for a shitty product doesn't just kill a blogger's credibility, and also help that bad company to gain reputation through consumer's Google result. I am one of the people who Google where to eat what to shop what is trending. But all the fake ads has made me fed up and I don't even want to trust those self-proclaimed blogger's post. I still Google a lot now, but I know who's blog to read, what website to trust. (Oh, and please stop sharing Gigacircle)

I know that this is a world where anyone can call themselves a blogger, simply by creating a blogspot site. And receiving sponsorship to new bloggers are like a medal that can make them feel like a star. But come on, if you want to REALLY be a blogger, please learn the blogger's ethic first. All the famous bloggers on the line at least know how to pick the right product to review and that's why they have better traffic. There's nothing wrong about sponsored post, as long as your review is authentic. And please remember, GOOD COMPANIES and GOOD PRODUCT is not afraid of receiving AUTHENTIC review.


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