Who can say no to free stuff? Not me that’s for sure. Especially when said free stuff is a huge sparkletastic cocktail ring. When I was approached by LuShae Jewelry to review one of their rings at first I thought the offer was too good to be true. They wanted to send me a free ring of my choosing, pay me for writing about the free ring and they asked that my review be honest. What’s the catch? So far I have not found one, except maybe a slight tinge of guilt. First let’s talk about the ring and then my guilt.
As I mentioned LuShae gave me the ring and asked me to review it. They said I could be brutally honest. Before their review money burned a hole in my thrift store addicted pocket I made sure to let them know that I felt obligated to my readers to not lie about the ring. Browsing the LuShae Jewelry website was a little tricky. As you might have guessed the rings on the website are not typically my style. However, a few options caught my eye. In the end I opted for the Sunny Cocktail Ring (Mainly because sadly the Cocktail Chic Ring was sold out). I gotta tell you the ring is just as pretty in person as it is on the website. One of those rings that catches the sunlight and sparkles. The kind of ring that if it was real I could put Tallulah through college by hocking it. I like that the ring is big and chunky and to my untrained eye looks every bit as fabulous as the real thing. I think if it was subdued I would not like it as much (that goes for most things with me). I appreciate that the website clearly let’s you know how big the ring is. I like a picture of the jewelry on an actual finger, but I hear that close up finger pictures creep some people out. I have tons of costume jewelry and this ring quality wise was as heavy and sturdy as the best of them. In the end I would definitely say that if you were in the market for a new cocktail ring stop by LuShae Jewelry and do a little shopping. I know I just might. Man that review, though true was worth every penny.
So now onto my guilt about the whole thing. It’s not the kind of guilt where I am losing sleep over it, it is just the kind of guilt that gets me to thinking about pay for play. Hence why they just passed all the new rules making me disclose things like the fact that I not only got the ring for free, but I also got paid to tell you about it. Does that make me a bad blogger? I review and give away books that are given to me free by publishers for the sole reason of promotion. I do how-to articles for companies that pay me and give me free supplies. Is a free ring and a little spending money really any different? I know some people are adamant about not having ads of any shape or form on their blog. I guess my logic is why not? If I can make a little money from my Amazon Associates widget, Blogher ad and the occasional ring review why shouldn’t I? I work hard to write my blog and sure I do it because I love it and enjoy writing, but I also have a mortgage to pay. I’m curious what are you thoughts about blogs with ads? Whether it be Google Adsense, Indie crafters banner ads, book reviews, sponsor spotlights? Does it bother you at all?
P.S. Check out the book Blogging for Bliss for a whole section about getting paid to blog.