26 November 2018

Integrity And The Siren's Call

I once asked for, and received, a BelOMO PK-01VS red-dot for review.

I gave it my honest assessment and ran a long term battery test (you can see those at the posts in the link.)

In the back of my mind was the thought, "If this thing sucks balls and I say so, will they send me more stuff to review?"

It didn't suck balls, but I've never asked for anything else to review.

The engineer/designer half of me thinks that a review should always be honest and that the manufacturer should treat negative reviews as an opportunity to improve their product.

If your product doesn't suck balls, then you've no need to pressure writers for good reviews; they will happen on their own.

Even if your product doesn't suck balls, there's only so much that can be said about it.

The PK-01VS, for example, it's a red dot.  If the reader knows what a red dot is, then 2/3 of what you can say about it is already written in the reader's mind.  What's left is how it mounts, does it co-witness, what does it weigh, does it keep zero after remounting and what does it cost?

It's not new and innovative in a world where Aimpoint has been around for decades.

But what if it had sucked?

On the strength of my experience with the PK-01VS, Marv bought a BelOMO PO3.5x21P.

He wanted magnification where I didn't.

The PO3.5x21P is magnified and has decently clear glass.  It's also huge, clunky, heavy, mounts awkwardly high and has very weak illumination.

He paid for this scope.  But what if I'd gotten it for free for review?  Would I have said that I didn't like it?  Would I have told Marv it was exactly what he wanted?

The fact that I had this doubt is why I've never asked for something else to review.

When I buy something and put down my thoughts about it, I can be upset if it doesn't work and say so.  I can be thrilled it does work; and say so!

I've been at this blogging thing for a long time and the names in the sidebar keep changing.  A couple of the must-reads are gone because going big-time seems to mean you have to change completely to remain there.  The "I get PAID to explain this at WORK!"attitude seeps into interactions where an honest question once got a friendly, or even humorous answer.

The person on the other end of the aether is gone and has been replaced by a writer.

The first step in becoming a writer is to accept the free stuff the second is to write so that it keeps flowing.  Why?  Because it's not the subscribers that pay the bills, it's the advertisers.

It's tragically amusing.

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