Recently the Federal Trade Commission decided to begin regulating blogging – bloggers must now disclose whether or not they have received a product they reviewed for free directly from the company; in this case receiving app promo codes. The FTC began this, because for instance
[…] what some consumers might not know is that many companies pay reviewers for their write-ups […]
And this is true even in the iPhone app world. We have heard from developers that some site actually charge for a review, some upwards of $150 for a “professional review.” In my opinion that’s just awful.
In the past we have not done this (yes, some of the reviews here, emerged from a promo code.) And I am not sure why I haven’t thought of doing it. However, we want our readers to understand that even though we received applications for free, we still use the some of the same standards for when we purchase apps, asking ourselves “Is this app really worth it?” as well as being harsher in giving stars to the rank to compensate for any bias. Personally we can only purchase so many apps per month, so the promo code usage, is helpful to us in providing reviews for readers.
You might notice that there are not any ads on this website (except in the iPhone version, but I can’t help that at the moment;) this is because I am not here to make money from app reviews nor readers, I simply created this blog so that others like me – wanting to know in-depth information about apps & how they function (like analyzing the pixelation of graphics in the background) could get the information that other sites do not provide. We only review applications that we can relate to, we have even turned down requests to review an application. Why? Because I simply didn’t have the knowledge to evaluate it (a law study guide app).
So in all disclosure, we will have two identifiers at the top of our app reviews – First, if we have received the app via a promo code, “via promo code” will display. If we requested a promo code, “requested promo code” will display and finally, if we have purchased the app, there will be no reference. If an app is “purchased” for free thought the App Store, there will also not be any reference either These references will begin immediately and will also be incorporated into older posts over the next month or so. Also for app reviews that evolved from beta testing an app, the apps must come from the developers & cannot be purchased through the iTunes App Store, therefore; this will also be noted in first sentence of the review when the word “Beta” is mentioned.
If you have any question or would like to make a feature suggestion, please leave us a comment.