On Tuesday, I’m going to write a post about a store I swung by on the way to work this morning and in it, I’ll probably tell you that after I interviewed the owner he gave me a pair of sunglasses.
I don’t want it to detract from his brilliant shop and almost insane love and knowledge of glasses. I want you to know that I’d love it and write about even if I’d stumbled upon it on my own, but that there are millions of great stores in New York and sometimes it takes a PR pitch to find them. I don’t want to not tell you and create an uproar or end up owing the government $11,000.
The question is, now that the FTC demands I tell you what I’ve been gifted, I’m trying to figure out the most tactful, and least distracting, way of doing so (even though I’ve disclosed freebies in the past, it feels like an entirely new pressure now that the government demands I do so) and that’s where you come in.
What should our policy be? Should we tag the story “Free?” Does mentioning it in a post distract you from the content? Does it make our opinion less valid, or the story less relevant, when we announce that something was free? In this case, in which I’m not even suggesting you buy these glasses (because they’re actually not even for sale), but just sharing valuable information, do I need to tell you anything? What do you, as the reader, want to know?
Fashionista isn’t even a review heavy site, about a tenth of our stories are product oriented and only a small percentage of those discuss free product, but we’ll put an official policy in place before the rule kicks in December 1st. So tell us what you think that policy should be, and we’ll whip something up.