There is a link between the three group of people above.
Developers are sort out for by startups, especially when they are scalling, startups need tech bloggers and bloggers in their niche to help them spread their message. What has this resulted to?
Some bloggers receive money, are investors in certain startup venture or are related to someone in a startup, but will write about them as if s/he's giving an honest opinion. How can I give an honest opinion, free of bias, if I am investing in a venture? Is it possible? It is the same with if I have been paid or given a gift of a sort.
Example is when Nokia gives me a loaned device to review for two weeks. In the beginning of my post, I stated that is was a loaned device. It is obvious therefore that Nokia is doing promotion of their brand. It is left for the readers after reading the disclosure I stated clearly, to determine if they'd believe what I have shared.
It is however widespread that bloggers receive such gift or have a deep involvement with a startup, brand or venture but never disclose it. They go on to write about it as if the opinion is 100 percent free of bias.
Here is why full disclosure is good. It makes people trust you. However, if they found out that your write-up or opinion is influence by a gift or interest, they may find it hard to trust or believe you in the future.
To protect your image and guard your authenticity, consider stating the involvement and interest you have in a venture, if there is any, when writing about them.
What will you do if you find out that someone you've always trusted wasn't giving you his/her honest opinion on her blog, but rather is influenced by personal interst and gift received? I will like to hear from you in the comment.
P.S. Mainwhile, I like @Arington's full disclosure on his new blog, Uncrunched. Louis Gray is another person who does a lot of disclosure on his blog-- louisgray.com. Check him out.