The Simple Reason I Stopped Hearing From Both Razer and Digital Extremes
I buy the vast majority of the tech products and video games I cover out of my own pocket, and I never use affiliate links to help cover my expenses, instead preferring direct reader support through Medium memberships. I think this is an ethically sound way for me to maintain critical distance from the products I’m purporting to review, and although I know that it’s closer to a bygone era of monetization around this sort of content, I still think it’s a healthier business model.
I couldn’t sleep at night if I benefitted directly from the sales of the products and games I’m supposed to be criticizing. More and more, as I look around the internet, it seems like that ethos applies to a dwindling number of creators.
Sometimes, I do receive products from companies. However, I don’t ever monetize review articles based on product samples I’ve been sent, and I always disclose as much information as possible about the arrangement between myself and the company. The only term that I’m usually willing to accept is a release date embargo. Otherwise I like to retain full editorial control over my content.
I’ve received products and/or early review assets from HyperX, Turtle Beach, Razer, and Digital Extremes (the makers of Warframe). I’ll go into more specific detail over the course of this post, but all of these companies have been a treat to work with. Also, all of them reached out to me cold after having read some of my articles.
I’ve also received one product from OneOdio — and that was not so great. They repeatedly wrote me to suggest directions the review could go in, and pressured me about when the article would be finished even over the weekend. I told them I was going to write the review as I saw fit and up to the standards I always follow, and following its publication I never spoke with them again.
Razer first reached out to me just after the Opus had launched, and that was the first product they sent. I was also included in the marketing cycle for the launch of the…