When Charlise was in jail, I joined a review site after being sent an email pitch to my Crunchy Family email (you know, despite me explicitly requesting peeps to ONLY send technical difficulty emails to it—not bloody pitches).
I mean, it was 2014. I’d been away from the sponsored posts world for a while [on purpose], and a lot of people had said it was different [now].
To test out their software/coding, I signed up under a new account and tried out 6birds.net. Again, the stats were off. I synced social media, and the stats were off. They displayed PageRank on my profile, and 6birds has been at a 3 since around 2012, so I knew for a fact their “1” was a definite mistake.
I contacted Tomoson again, and they replied, “We are seeing at least 1,000 unique page views1 for 6birds.net via our API. This is not incorrect. We sync with Google Analytics, so we have no control over what is seen. We are not looking into this, because you are still the only person who has complained.”
I gave up and decided to just look around for what was available to request and review [for crunchyfamily.com].
The majority of the companies I pitched via the site were interested, but they soon messaged me with something along the lines of the following:
We are interested in sending you a product. We need you to post a 5-star review on Amazon after you try it. If you don’t like something about it, contact us first so we can fix that and turn your bad review into a 5-star one.
We also need you to buy it from Amazon for $1 so we can increase our popularity. In return, we will give you a free product.
Basically, they were trying to cheat Amazon. I let them know Amazon penalizes companies for that, and they acted as if Amazon would never know
Anyway, when Charlise got out of jail, she subscribed to Amazon Prime, and I eventually landed a product to review—for free—because I had access to Amazon Prime2. In the USA, we have to disclose when we receive products for free.
However, this one doesn’t work out. I’m given the coupon code, but then the guy completely cuts me off. I was pretty excited about it, because it was precisely what I’d been searching for for a long time, but hadn’t yet found. Like, if this infused water bottle was great, I would have willingly purchased another one, so I’d have two like it. Needless to say, the coupon code didn’t work. I told Char I’d remember their name in the event that they ever contacted me in the future, but I no longer remember it…and I no longer care. Zing Anything is friendly on social media and great with taking feedback (positive and negative), in my experience, so I’m likely gonna stick with ’em for life. #ZingAnythingLifer.
Moving on, Tomoson changed their site in a way that it made all reviewer emails available to companies…which made my email available to several thousand companies—all of which demanded a positive review.
It is 2016, and I still cannot delete my account or stop the emails from Tomoson and/or their companies from flowing.
2017 edit: Access to my account has since been revoked. Reason could be due to my changing my profile bio to say something like, “I work with brands via my blog now. Tomoson treats bloggers like crap. I won’t be logging back into this again. There’s no button to delete my account, so I left you this message instead.”
I WENT ROGUE.~
This post was originally a two-part series, but I ran out of patience. Freelance Lady covers well what I couldn’t.
2018 edit: Companies that ghost-shame bloggers are gross. This one is worse because they can’t even leave the credit in. I understand it’s for some kind of decency, but every blogger starts somewhere. Make your own photos for such things. I’d really love to see them try to be influencers?? SMH.