With the upcoming US Federal Trade Commission guidelines, I thought I might clarify a few things. This goes way beyond those requirements. On a number of occasions, I’ve been asked about all of this before, and this saves me repeating myself:
So, who pays me?
I write for Lowell Cremorne at the Metaverse Journal. That arrangement doesn’t have any influence on the content here.
Aside from assorted bits of project work (which you don’t hear about because I don’t write about the work or the clients), and sales of Second Life statistical data to researchers and analysts, the rest of the money comes (directly or indirectly) from you.
The site here makes money from advertising and anonymous donations. The advertising rotates around and is based on regional locations and other factors. What particular ads you’re seeing (with the exception of NCI) are beyond my ken. I’m not really sure who you’ll see advertising on the site on any visit, so long as it remains within my ad policies.
If there’s any of that money coming in from special interests, I’ve got no idea who they are, so not much of an influence there.
If there’s any variation to that, it will be disclosed.
No scams (obviously) as near as I can determine (including, but not limited to crappy link-sites), no dating sites, nothing demeaning towards race, gender or creed, no get-rich-quick schemes, no weight-loss, no teeth-whitening, no gambling, no faux IQ tests. Ads might be for mature or adult-rated sites or content, but shouldn’t contain any such content within the ad.
Yes, that significantly reduces advertising income, but because of your support, that isn’t such a big deal.
This seems as good a place as any to mention the commenting policies. It gives them at the bottom of each post, but here they are again:
“Commenters are to be civil, courteous and respectful to others, insofar as it is possible to do so. Beyond that, you’re not required to agree with the opinions expressed by me or by others. Think for yourselves!”
There’s also an implication of ‘no spam’, but spammers don’t read such policies anyway.
If you cannot (in my sole discretion) meet those requirements, then I’m not going to pay for your comment to be hosted here. You can pay for it to be hosted somewhere else, if you like.
Sometimes comments wind up stuck in the overly fat spam-queue until I get around to trying to sift through the mass. I dig stuff out that doesn’t belong there when I find it. More than once I’ve accidentally deleted a comment rather than pulling it out of the spam queue. Whoops. Statistically speaking, the last time I made that mistake probably won’t be the last time it happens. Email me if you think something might have gone wrong.
When reviewing Second Life products, it’s always been stuff that I’ve bought. I’ve received numerous ‘review copies’ of things. You didn’t read anything about them from me, because I never wrote anything about the review copies (I generally never even looked at them). If I didn’t want an item enough to spend my own Linden Dollars on it, why should you be interested in what I have to say about it?
There are a few exceptions, obviously if you get impressions about a beta, that’s because I was in the beta. Otherwise, I clearly mark any deviation from the policy. If I was given a free copy of something (eg: a book) to review, then you’ll know it.
No, I’ve got no inside sources with any company. I know people who work for companies that I write about, but all my information comes through asking in official PR channels, or from publicly accessible information. No secret contacts, no surreptitiously “leaked” stuff. If there ever is, you’ll see a notice about it.
Strictly, it’s true that not every piece is solely my opinion. Some things are talked around with others before I eventually write them. So, I take responsibility for it, even though it doesn’t always necessarily completely reflect my own individual opinion.
While I try to credit original posts wherever I can, often I’ve been turning something over in my head for a while and some things aggregate from many sources over a period. I might not always be able to recall where I read something that sparked of a particular chain of thought. (Actually, what started me writing this page was another post that I stumbled on some time ago. No idea where it is)
Still and all, I do make the attempt to give credit where credit is due.
I try to fact-check things insofar as is possible, but I make mistakes sometimes. I’ll mark amendments or corrections when that occurs. Sometimes I just screw up.
Want to discuss something here? Email me.
Got a news tip or a press-release? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.