Suppose there's a site that runs a blog about computer hardware and on one of the blogs about dealing with old hardware stuff, a blog reader asks something like 'Looking for possible online sites where i could list my old pc for sale? ' in the comments section.
Suppose i answered this question with something like ' Have a look at somepcsite.com . or try listing at somepcsite.com'
Assuming that somepcsite.com belongs to me , would you consider this as an endorsement?
Is there anything Ethically or Legally wrong about this?
If you think it is, what could be done to promote your product/site without being offending or sounding as an endorsement?
Edit: My question here is - Is this really an endorsement ? The answer does not state that the product/site is good or has such and such benefits... it's just a mention of the name of site and perhaps a casual remark that the asker might want to try this out to see if it helps him/her solve their problem. Do you really think this is an endorsement?
Secondly, it's very much possible that someone genuinely mentioned my site in response to such a question. The internet has a a swarm of annonymous users who might do this, so how do you track who mentioned it?... whether the site owner or just an annonymous internet user who heard the name somewhere.
Going by the current scenario, it seems that every time someone genuinely mentioned my site in response to a question as above, it would be suspected the site owner answered it when in reality i never did.
So what do you make out of this .. all this seems a lot of hassle and nothing more....
I don't see anything wrong with that, as long as you are clear in your answer about it. There's nothing wrong with promoting your own business, but you can simply say something like:
Have a look at someshopsite.com, it has a large selection of ... and a
large community of users... Full disclosure: I am the owner of
If you are in the US, and if you want to comply with FTC guidelines concerning endorsements and testimonials, you should clearly and conspicuously disclose that the site is yours.
Please see Educate Employees about Online Endorsements – the FTC is Watching! (a blog post that I wrote 2+ years ago).
Disclaimer: This information does not constitute legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.
It's not an endorsement as such, but, if you're dropping into communities that you are not an active member of, it will be considered as spam, with or without the full disclosure.