Why I’m Not a Decision Influencer

Today’s Rant by Joe Farace

I’m somewhat active on social media. You can find me on Twitter, Instagram (@joefarace), Pintererst as well as my car photography website/blog. Sorry, no Facebook anymore and I’ll gladly tell why face-to-face sometime over coffee.

I don’t consider myself a decision influencer. Why not? Because I’m not employed, sponsored or paid by a camera or lens company, their public relations agencies or any combination thereof to write positive comments about a particular camera, lens or whatever.

No photo-related company or PR group pays money me to write what you read here, on my car blog or in any of my magazine stories or books. And these companies don’t pay me to stand up at trade shows and ooh-and-aah over their new offerings either. The ads you see at right cover some but not all of the costs of operating this site.

All the cameras and lenses mentioned on this blog were purchased with my own money and were not payment-in-kind from camera companies or their PR agencies. For my last three new cameras: I purchased the Olympus Pen F but the others were birthday gifts from my wife, Mary, and she doesn’t care what I write, only that I have fun with them. That’s why all my Instagram posts are photographs I wanted to make and are not driven by astroturfing and payola. It’s just photos that I’ve made and am making.

With a few notable expectations, not every camera and lens manufacturer will lend me equipment to review for this blog. Is it because I won’t guarantee them a good review? I honestly don’t know but while these companies are unfailingly polite when I ask about reviewing a lens or camera, they never, ever actually lend equipment to review. For a time some gear was provided to me by a third-party retailer who made no demands on me other than that it be returned within 30 days. He doesn’t do that anymore. I dunno why; such is the state of the paradigm shift that has ravaged the photographic industry.

I’m not whining about anything; just stating some facts. I want to be able to look at myself in the mirror without being embarrassed. Since my first magazine article about photography appeared in the late and wonderful magazine Photomethods, everything written was in honest service to the readers. I’ve carried that same approach into everything I’ve written since then including too many blog posts to count.

To end on a positive note, I want to thank each and every one of you for reading this blog. The new blog and old one have been a labor of love for me. I started both of them for the altruistic reason that I wanted to share my photographic experience with others and this continues to be true to this very day.

 

 

If you would like to read an interesting and thought-provoking book about social media. I would like to suggest that you pick up a copy of Digital Vertigo: How Today’s Online Social Revolution Is Dividing, Diminishing, and Disorienting Us by Andrew Keen. New softbound copies are available on Amazon for $6.00 with used hardcover copies selling for (no kidding) 14 cents, as I write this.