How to sell out your blog, the easy way!
1) I'm getting paid $10 for writing about this
2) I actually like the premise and execution of this site
I'd written a great big snarky-ass post about how participation in this site's services was tantamount to undermining any integrity that a blog might have, how this dilutes teh blogosphere, artifically inflates page rankings, causes global warming, and is the essential mechanic that causes puppies, when nailed to trees, to make rainbows. Well, ok, I stole the last bit from Something Positive. But that was the gist of it.
Then I realized that was completely fucking stupid.
Teh Blogosphere has no inherent integrity, and can't be broadly categorized in that way. If there's a way to commodify on an existing trend, it will be done instantly. Blogs are corporate whores, spammers, or valid sources of information and entertainment entirely on their own merit. It's the 21st fucking century and the mass media marketers that survived the last two decades are nimble, highly evolved predators of the human psyche. They range from the overfunded opportunistic abominations like Golden Palace Casino (which I won't dignify with a link) to the unobtrusive and arguably benign behemoths like Google. If you want to sell out, it's already damn easy. For example, the integrated google ad-words at the top of this blog.
I stuck google adsense on this blog frankly because I could, and I was curious to see how it worked. I consider them harmless and, well, ineffective because they're completely ubiquitous. It's netted me about $2.50, and is constantly broken because I update like mad on an improbable array of subjects. I'm rather underwhelmed, but then again, this blog has been more of a linkdump than me actually writing anything of substance. Google Analytics says that on a good day I get maybe 20 or 30 hits, so this isn't exactly high volume, nor do I have any expectations of it being so. Making money off this blog is not, and never has been a priority, and the concept that I could was merely a curiosity, an experiment.
So back to PayPerPost... by writing a positive or negative review of this service, I get $10. I find this to be fascinating, though possibly overpriced for this remote corner of internet.
The way it works is that you log in, pick from a list of "oportunities" advertisers are offering. Giving it a once over, there's listings for iTunes, the Superman trailer, bustedtees, match.com.. about 30 entries in all, offering at least $5 a post. The entries have constraints, most accepting either positive or negative reviews, some requiring exclusively positive (like the asinine and questionable looking BlogInSpace entry), and a tracking link.
So you write your post, put the link in the form, and then in a couple of days it get approved or denied. Hmm.. I can't think of a good/efficent way to scan entries heuristically, so there's got to be a back end staff of link-checkers, which would probably be a big hit on their overhead... Anyway, then your PayPal account gets credited. Seems pretty damn easy.
In my opinion, this seems reasonable, too. I'm not going to write positively about something I don't like, but I enjoy writing, and if I can entertain myself and others by tearing something apart, and coincidentally make money, I'm more than happy to do so. Hey, schadenfreude sells, and I don't see any compromise of integrity there.
I can see how people would try and abuse the system, but that's the problem of the admins of payperpost, not mine.
So in short... the concept seems reasonable, and the site execution is slick and painless. I'll try it out, especially since there doesn't seem to be any injunction against informing your readers that you're being paid for your opinions.
Of course, the links of shinyness will continue unabated... and all paid posts will be clearly marked. We'll see how this works.