|WWII poster, source|
One article I read exhorts bloggers to remain true to blogging roots, by sharing our opinions freely and honestly, compensated or not. Another--which I can't seem to find, so sorry--talks about how blogging is more and more becoming money-driven. The idea in these posts is that bloggers are expected to monetize to be considered "real bloggers," and the use of affiliate links, sponsored posts, etc. is "watering down" the authenticity of blogging and hurting the trust between bloggers and their readers.
Personally, this came as a bit of a shock to me. Plenty of bloggers I know have monetized, but it doesn't mean they've sold out and accept any sponsor that comes their way, whether or not it's good for their readers. In fact, every blogger I've talked to is very careful in accepting sponsorships that are appropriate for their audience.
However, I know this isn't the case with all bloggers. Some don't disclose their affiliation with sponsors. Some jump at anyone who will give them money to post. Others don't curate their post content and come off as "sponsor-spammy." In fact, now that I think of it, there are some blogs I don't really "trust" when it comes to product reviews. Not even necessarily because they're unethical, but usually because the blogger just has a different style than me.
So what do you think? Do you feel you can trust bloggers, specifically vintage bloggers? Do you find the use of sponsored posts, affiliate links, etc. to be breeches of trust or useful to you? How do you determine which bloggers' opinions you can accept as honest and authentic?