An entire month ago there was an article about VideoGamer.com – a subsidiary of Candy Banana – having affiliate links in their articles without disclosure. It was published on April 30th, 2016. When originally asked about affiliate links, I was informed that Candy Banana were working on something but nothing concrete had been done about it at the time. Well, things are changing and the site will soon add an affiliate blurb in each article that contains an affiliate link.
In the original piece Candy Banana’s director, Adam McCann, had revealed that they had plans on addressing the affiliate links used in their articles and on Twitter. A month later, McCann informed me by e-mail on May 31st, 2016 that VideoGamer will add disclosures to content containing the links in future articles.
This time McCann came bearing gifts in the form of an example. McCann linked to the legal notices page on VideoGamer.com, and informed me that there will be a blurb added to articles with affiliate links, similar to the following…
“We sometimes post links to online retailers (like Amazon) on VideoGamer.com and the site’s social media channels such as Twitter. We receive a small commission from any purchases made via these links. These links do not influence editorial decisions or review scores in any way.”
According to McCann, the company had other pressing matters that they were tending to, hence why the addition of disclosures blurb regarding affiliate links was waylaid. However, they did note that disclosures for affiliate links would be coming soon and would be using a blurb similar to the one above.
This comes shortly after a campaign was put together on Kotaku in Action back on May 23rd, 2016 where the denizens of the sub-Reddit became active in contacting the advertising association of the U.K. — appropriately known as the Advertising Standards Association — to inform them about VideoGamer.com’s lack of disclosure.
For those of you who don’t know, it’s mandatory for websites, digital media outlets and even print publications to disclose if they are financially endorsed, promoted, or sponsored by a product, individual or service where where monetary funds exchange hands. Clear and concise disclosure whether in the U.K., the rest of Europe or the United States is required by most organizations that regulate advertising standards within the media industry.
The campaign is one of many that have been launched over the past two years from various sub-communities that spawned in the wake of #GamerGate, as a way to maintain a watchful eye on the video game journalism ring, and ensure that the sites maintain proper orientation within their ethical compass.
We’ll keep you posted on when the disclosure blurbs will be rolled out on the VideoGamer.com articles.
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