From a previous post...
raf, Sr. Staff for Armory section:
It has always been accepted practice for posters to be able to mention non-Site Dealers /IPs, when done in passing, and in response to a specific question.
Obviously, this can be overdone, and if that occurs, the Mod should step in and take appropriate action. That's part of the Mod's job. By the same token, the Mod's function is not that of a censor, eliminating every reference to firearms-related mfrs/vendors who do not happen to participate in this Site.
If it can be demonstrated to a reasonable, unbiased person that some form of collusion is taking place in order to pimp some particular Mfr/Vendor, then that is actionable by the Mod, up to, but not necessarily including, the locking of accounts.
What does this mean?
Site Dealers and IPs pay good money to help support this Site, the cost of which is considerable. In return, it is not unreasonable for them to expect something in return; in this connection, the mention of non-site-supporting mfrs/vendors should be kept to a reasonable minimum. Not extinguished, but a reasonable minimum.
I had reason to post something in a related vein in Tac Gear forum a while back, when people pimping-out non-site-supporting mfrs/vendors was becoming a problem. I'll quote it here, and most of it applies to this forum as well:
"Specific To Sales
1.) Companies or individuals may not advertise or sell products and/or services in the forums without permission from an admin. (This includes siglines and titles.) Industry Partners are allowed to post sales or specials on a limited basis and also require admin permission. -Edited
2.) Individuals interested in selling or trading equipment should resort to the Equipment Exchange. At no time should an item be listed in any discussion forum. (This includes links to auctions.)
3.) Fraudulent practices or attempts to defraud another person or group will be dealt with very seriously."
Note: the intent of the following is to foster openness and transparency on the part of Gear Reviewers with the expectation being that each reviewer will be completely forthcoming about any and all possible sources of bias in their Review(s).
Specific to reviews: Readers have a right to know whether or not a given review is biased in any way, and Reviewers have a responsibility to state their relationships (if any) with the mfr/vendor of any product(s) being reviewed.
Ideally, the Reviewer should have bought the item(s) at fair market price. If that is not the case, the exact arrangements should be revealed to the Reader.
The Reviewer should ideally take their own photos, but a [i]limited[/b] use of vendor/mfr-supplied inages is allowed, as long as the reviewer has obtained permission to use same, and so states next to each vendor/mfr-supplied image.
In sum, the Reviewer should reveal any and all factor(s) that might cause a fair-minded Reader to question whether the reviewer might be biased in his Review. When in doubt, spell it out, and let the Reader decide.
Staff/Mods have the right to lock and trash threads whose author fails to adhere to the guidelines above.
Please read again Item (3) above from the CoC. Reviewers who do not reveal actual and/or potential conflicts of interest may face serious sanctions. Review Authors who fail to adhere to the guidlines above may also face serious sanctions.
Keep an eye on this topic in the event that future changes are made.
What this means is that we (Staff) are continuously reviewing the posting guidlines with an eye to reducing the number of posts/threads that appear to be the "pimping" of equipment by an individual who appears to not be connected with a business, but whose post(s) amount to thinly-disguised ads for a company or companies. We will post any changes in procedure in the CoC and in this thread as well."
You only live once, but if you live right.. once is enough.