Got a Blog? Don’t Do THIS!

Remember my yesterday’s post? The one where I told a story about my dentist’s receptionist? I said that she wrote down the name of my blog. Well, here is a comment from her (I assume):

comment 1

Oops! This is the crazy thing about blogging: sometimes it’s hard to convey intended tone in your posts. I absolutely meant what I said in a lighthearted way, but it’s impossible to tell from reading  yesterday’s drivel. I was horrified that she would think I was mocking her, and it wasn’t my intention at all. I actually found it hilarious how she instantly summed up my monetization strategy. She was absolutely right!

I really like this person, and the office is closed today, so I can’t call and apologize till Monday. I’m hoping she will see this follow-up post and understand the background of why I said what I said. If you are new to my blog and are turned off by occasional silly reference to credit card affiliate links, this might clarify a few things. None of it, of course, is an excuse for the stupid thing I did yesterday, for which I’m truly sorry.

First, I hope this doesn’t come off as whiny or “cry baby”-like. I’ve said before that nobody is forcing me to blog and I am free to quit  and get a  real job. And I just might do that someday, but I’m not quite there yet. A lot of what I say is my way of coping with absurdity and hostility of miles and points industry. It’s hard to explain it unless you’ve been an affiliate blogger for a good amount of time. But I’ll try.

Those who have credit card affiliate links are constantly referred to as pimps, sellouts and morally inferior individuals. True, majority of vitriol is directed at the big guys, but the idea applies to all of us, I think. We are lumped into one category, “you bloggers.” The evil kind. For the most part, I found a way to tune it all out, but I like to poke fun at this generalization now and again. Interestingly, the people who are shocked and disgusted by presence of credit card affiliate links are the first ones  to spam the comments section with their own personal referrals. #Ironic

Another interesting trend I’ve noticed lately is readers demanding that affiliate bloggers donate their proceeds to charity. Hmm, I don’t tell you what you should do with your earnings, why is it fair game for you to say that to me? Just because I don’t talk about it, doesn’t mean I don’t use my affiliate commission for worthy causes. I encourage readers to ignore “charity” claims and reward bloggers based on  merit. And no, I’m not necessarily referring to myself here.

I’ve seen claims that it’s wrong for family travel bloggers to have credit card affiliate links. Because it’s OK to make money when you write about manufactured spending, but when you help regular families afford travel, it’s a big no-no. What kind of a twisted and convoluted logic is that?

I’ve said before that this is a real job,  like any other job out there. It just pays a whole lot less, at least in my case. I absolutely don’t mind volunteering and in fact, do it on a regular basis. I just don’t feel compelled to volunteer my valuable (and scarce)  time to help people get free money and almost free trips. Especially,  since earning affiliate commission comes at no cost to them. If that makes me a pimp, I can live with that. But I digress…

I hope this explains where I’m coming from. As I’ve said before, I’m a  human being and not immune to attacks and unfairness I witness on a daily basis. This topic is far more complicated than that, of course, but I don’t want to beat the dead horse yet again.

Bottom line: this person did nothing wrong, and I feel really bad for dragging her into this issue. It won’t happen in the future. I do dumb stuff occasionally, but this one probably takes the cake. To my loyal readers, I’m sorry for bringing up this topic once again. We’ll be back to out regular programming next week.


2 thoughts on “Got a Blog? Don’t Do THIS!

  1. Just blame it on your Russian roots and the language barrier. 🙂

    I honestly don’t know why people get mad if you post affiliate links. Nobody makes them use the link. It seems that that the comments sections on any new story, post or blog are just a magnet for negativity. I don’t get it.


    • Jennifer, I’m totally going to use the “Russian” card! 🙂 I can’t believe I was so dumb. I honestly didn’t mean anything bad toward that person, and hope she reads this post to see that I’m sincere. Plus, I don’t want to have to switch dentists.
      As far as negativity goes, I don’t get much of it on my blog, thank goodness. I was mostly referring to this industry in general. Of course, I don’t go looking for trollfests, but doing research, sometimes they are hard to avoid. With all the recent negative hobby developments, many people are looking for scapegoats, and bloggers are easy target. As far as affiliate links go, my policy is to promote offers that I believe are beneficial to readers. If they pay me, great! That never changed, and I try very hard to keep my content balanced. I definitely don’t want this blog to turn into spamfest.


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