We Could Use the Money! (And Swell New Products!)
By Brad Friedman on 12/28/2006, 6:05am PT  

We've been accused from time to time of being, variously, a "CIA Internet Fake" or a Karl Rove plant or whatever other nonsense folks may dredge up here in Freedom of Speech land. Unfortunately, neither the CIA nor Rove nor "the Jews" have ever paid up. (Please see our blue donation form on the right of every page. We'll take whatever we can get. Even via PayPal. We're not proud.)

On that note then, NYPost reports on some of the companies who are paying bloggers in hopes of good reviews...

If you can't build online buzz for your brand, then just buy it.

That's the pitch from a handful of dubious Internet services offering to turn people into paid shills for advertisers. Their tactics have sparked a controversy similar to the one over fake blogs, or "flogs," launched by Wal-Mart and Sony.

Some of these services offer money to bloggers to endorse a company or product, while others pay people to manipulate popularity rankings on sites such as Digg, Delicious and Reddit.
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PayPerPost is trying to take the lead in linking bloggers and advertisers, including the Speed Channel, PGA.com and Office Max. It recently changed its policy to require people it hires to disclose their advertiser connections. Bloggers aren't required to give positive reviews.

While we have little interest in either the Speed Channel or the PGA, we've spent the bulk of the Christmas quiet time backing up, reformatting and restoring a hard drive on our ailing computer and still have yet to either finish, or fix the problem that seemed to be there in the first place.

So with that in mind, if Office Max --- a fine, upstanding company, if ever we saw one --- wishes to help out, we certainly could use both a new monitor and, at least, one new computer.

Given the lack of donations The BRAD BLOG seems to receive, along with Office Max's reputation for offering only the best goods and services available at some of the most reasonable prices in the industry (now offering fast, free delivery on most orders over $50!), we believe it'd be the perfect fit!

At least until "the Jews" come through with the big money as promised.