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Re: commercial spam on planet

Raphael Hertzog <hertzog@debian.org> writes:
> On Mon, 08 Nov 2010, Russ Allbery wrote:

>> Where I personally draw the line is that I'm fairly comfortable with
>> Debian-involved people advertising their own services on Planet Debian:
>> their own companies, their own consulting services, their own posts,
>> and so forth.  I would start getting very annoyed if syndicated blogs
>> contained advertising for third parties.

> I agree with the general logic but you can't apply this rule blindly.

> You post book reviews from time to time, so you're advertising products
> of third parties. I find those OK.

Endorsements of third-party products aren't the same thing, to me, as
advertising.  The key difference is whether I get paid to do it, which I
don't.  I'm endorsing (or not endorsing) a book because I think it's a
good product, no different than if I suggested people buy a particular
model of computer.  I think that if I'm getting paid to make that
endorsement, it becomes questionable content for Planet Debian unless it's
my own personal product.

> And they would still be OK for me even if you provided affiliate links
> to amazon as part of those articles.

I would not do this; for myself personally, I'd consider it unethical.  I
do have affiliate codes on the links to Powell's if one clicks all the way
through to my permanent pages (for reasons explained on my review
philosophy page), but I would never put those into my RSS feeds.

> Somehow you need to take into account how often this happens, whether
> the article provide value for a majority of planet readers, etc. It's
> difficult to set a clear limit.

I personally would set the limit where I stated above, with the caveat
about how I'm defining advertising, and for me affiliate links would be
over that line.  Probably not far enough over the line for me to complain
about it here, since they're very inobtrusive and I'm probably going to
only actually complain about things that make Planet Debian obnoxious to
read, but if someone asked me if they were okay for Planet Debian, I
personally would say no.

Other people will draw the line in different places.  I personally loathe
advertising and aggressively filter it out of my web browsing experience,
and get particularly upset if people try to shove it in my face.  Other
people have a less extreme reaction.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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