Book Blogger Confessions is a new Monday meme started by Tiger at Tiger's All-Consuming Books and Karen at For What It's Worth. With Tiger moving away and changing the focus of her blogging, Pam from Midnyte Reader will be joining with Karen to host this meme. The purpose of the meme is best stated by Karen here:
"Tiger and I thought it might be time to start a meme to discuss some of the frustrations that are unique to book bloggers. What happens when the hobby you love becomes more of a chore?This meme will appear on the first and third Mondays of the month. One of the hosts will give us a question to respond to and a linky for sharing our responses and developing community.
This week's question is: Making money off your blog: There was a recent controversy about bloggers charging authors for reviews (You can read about it here) which leads to this week's question:
Almost all of us blog as a hobby in our spare time, usually for free but is there anything wrong with making money off your blog?
Should bloggers charge for reviews?
What about advertising on a blog?
When a blogger does allow book related advertising does it turn you off? Make you wonder about the honesty of their reviews?
Do you have a problem with purchase links (Amazon for example) that earn a blogger a small commission if a person purchases a book through that link?
I do think charging authors for reviews is way over the line though. I have always thought that the ARCs I receive - either print or electronic - were my pay for reviewing a title. But I don't feel that accepting ARCs for review obligates me to provide positive reviews or any review at all if the book isn't something suitable for me. With so many bloggers out there, why would any author pay for a review in the first place?
I am not bothered by ads on a blog but that is because most of the time I am reading blog posts in my Google Reader and don't actually go to the blog unless I want to make some kind of comment. I don't think I have ever been confused about whether something is a post or an ad. It doesn't bother me if bloggers choose to have ads but I am not going to do it on my blog because of my innate laziness - too much work!
The only problem I have with purchase links to Amazon or other vendors is that they don't show up in my Google Reader. Looking at a post that tells about sale books and then doesn't show them is more likely to make me skip the post than click through to see what I'm missing.
I buy 99% of the books that I actually buy at Amazon. All my links go to Amazon because that is where I shop. I haven't bothered becoming an Amazon Associate. Again, laziness is the key reason. I can't imagine making enough from linking to make it worth the time it would take.
In summary, any way of making money from your blog - short of charging authors for reviews - is okay if you want want to. For me, blogging is for fun and not profit.