Update: Ok, the poll is now closed. It was close, but the “Nos” have it with 55% of the 3,437 votes cast. No IZEA ads on TechCrunch.
In 2006 PayPerPost CEO Ted Murphy emailed to ask if we’d take their ads on TechCrunch. We said no and that was the end of it. Yesterday I heard from Ted again on the subject of advertising. His company, which has been renamed IZEA, wants to advertise their new RealRank service on TechCrunch.
For anyone unfamiliar with PayPerPost/IZEA and our position on them, it comes down to this: We think the core product is deeply flawed and we’ve said so many, many times. Over time the company has made policy changes that have mitigated some of the biggest issues we and others have with them. For example, they now require disclosure of paid posts, although we take issue with some of the language and the placement of the disclosure.
They are the blogging world’s pariah and are fairly routinely trashed for, as I put it, polluting the blogosphere. For more on our posts on them, see their Crunchbase profile. Here’s our first post on PayPerPost, which is representative of most of our coverage. If you have a spare couple of hours (and you’re tired of watching my sweet dancing moves), you can read all of our coverage of the company here.
Anyway, the company now has other products which we have no particular issue with (example), and RealRank, a new way to rank participating blogs since Google has basically kicked them out of the Internet, is one of them.
We’ve asked Ted if he minds us asking our readers what they think about taking advertising from IZEA on TechCrunch, and he’s agreed. So the question is, do we accept advertising from IZEA for RealRank? The poll is below. If you say it’s a bad idea, we won’t accept it (and Ted says he wouldn’t want to do it anyway since it wouldn’t be received well). If you say yes, we’ll take it.
Two quick additional points. First, yes I know that simply writing this post is a way of promoting PayPerPost. But we’re not linking to them here, and I’m pretty sure Ted isn’t super pleased with all the links to the negative posts we’ve written. Second, it should go without saying that even if we accept their advertising, it isn’t going to affect our editorial coverage of the company. In fact, I may go more negative just to prove we’re neutral, if that makes sense.
What’s your opinion? The poll will remain open for around 24 hours, and we’ll update with the final vote. If you’re wondering how I’m voting on this – well, the very first vote is a “no.” :-/