Should "shilling" via referral links be allowed by BLF members????

If we melted them all down, could we collectively produce a solid metallic structure larger than this?

Sorry, my mistake on that one. I don't think I've ever been to the Light Bulb forum directly (not via the new thread feed). I see Ledlights100 here almost daily and just assumed that he was being allowed to stay just because he was posting in the Light Bulb forum about light bulbs. I thought maybe that was the purpose of the LB forum ...for commercial sellers to go there.

I just went there and I see that's not the case so my mistake!

You should have started saying this, my friend ;)

And that's how DX ref. system works:

I have to admit I thought it was based on "more clicks - more "cash"", my bad.

For the record ... I will start marking every post that starts a thread and has no additional information/usefulness other than to place a referral link as "spam" from now on.

Its sneaky and disingenuous...

I didn’t even know this was going on. Seems a sneaky way to make money but i guess if it is between letting people spam a little or not allowing any links like CPF, I would take the spam. I don’t even bother with CPF much because they became too strict and you couldn’t even link to the product you wanted to know about. I say, let them spam but make them admit what they are doing.

The forum should automatically append BLF referral info to the end of links so BLD admin can get some money that way.

So if people here post DX links, sales resulting from referral traffic go to BLF not the original poster.

Its lame the referral money goes to the sneaky spammer and not BLF who provides the forum in the first place.

[20-OCT-2015] Refinements of forum categories and rules on affiliate links / codes has been posted by the forum owner. This remains a reoccurring theme.

3 years old, and still alive!

Actually it's not, New members from the last 1-2years haven't seen any talking about shills. Because Now they are called aff linkers, and even are allowed and even carried on the shoulders by some not well informed members.

I wonder if we change the word back to shill this whole discussion would go in a different direction.

Man, I used a lot of custom smileys 4 years ago. :)

Yeah, now youre more fixated on Mila’s pictures :D!

I’m firmly against shilling and think it should be banned from BLF! We don’t need any of those dirty, underhanded tactics around here! I borrowed this from the OP:

As for aff-linking, I don’t see any problem with that. :bigsmile:

Well, I wish there was a way to satisfy everyone’s preferences, but unfortunately there isn’t. We have a lot of members that want to see affiliate links, because they bring better deals. But also a few of our very knowledgeable and valued members detest them. At this point, few if any will change their position for or against affiliate links. So the best I can do is restrict them to a specific area of the forum, which has already been done. So I would recommend that the affiliate link haters not visit the “BLF User Negotiated Deals” section. And to make it easier for them to avoid it, I have created a Recent Posts page with threads from “BLF User Negotiated Deals” filtered out:

In this thread I would like to establish that according to my definition, affiliate linking in accordance with the defined BLF rules is not considered to be shilling. Of course, classical shilling or new affiliate links outside of the “BLF User Negotiated Deals” section is strictly prohibited and will be enforced as always.

How about simply requiring them to say it’s an affiliate link?
for example

Deal here! (affiliate link)

Without some sort of filter that identifies the embedded code you would be depending on the linker to fess up. If they’re honest to begin with the link will be to a product they have tried and approved, if not then, well, not. Lots of people ask where to find this or that and I find myself posting links if I know or can locate the item but I don’t do aff-links or care to be rewarded since I don’t wish to tie myself to any particular vendor that way. Offhand it has the appearance of a temptation that leads toward reccomending products just for the reward and not for their actual quality. What happens when the vendor starts suggesting items to be linked? I would like to trust everyone but not everyone is worthy. I don’t like the idea of regulating but I have a much stronger distaste for fraud. I guess maybe some sort of symbol attached to aff-links that isn’t otherwise present might work. It might be an insult to the honest but they have chosen to stand behind those products and should not hide that fact. In the end let the buyer beware is and always has been the bottom line.

Well they could be banned for violating the rule. What you suggested with using code to do it is probably possible too, the site seems to already check and tag anything that is an external link. A bit of code would be helpful. Though maybe not as foolproof as a moderator.

I feel sad that even SB now thinks that we can ONLY get good deals with aff links...!

Yep, as Rufusbduck alludes to, the affiliate link haters simply don’t want to see any affiliate links because they distrust the motives that the user has for posting the link, because in theory an affiliate linker might try to get his link out there for profit regardless of the actual quality of the “deal”. So whether the affiliate link is labeled or not it’s still irritating to a few of our users. I’m not going to try to sway anybody’s viewpoint with this, and I hope that limiting them to a specific section that can optionally be filtered will reduce some of the contention.

I did not say that.

I’m not sure I read sb’s response to say that good deals only come from affiliate links. To me it says that they can bring better deals. I’ve tried to negotiate with Gearbest before to no avail when doing 10+ piece orders, and although I never tried to negotiate directly with Banggood for reduced prices I was able to request a lower price through M4D M4X, and got about 30% off of the chargers I wanted to order. I have no problem with affiliate links for products being on the forum, especially in these nicely separated sub-forums where it’s clear that every link could likely be an affiliate link. As long as aff linkers aren’t being “shills” as defined above, then I think it adds value to this forum.