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Music Web Sites' Dirty Little Secret: 'Pay for Posts'

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It's an open secret that a lot of my less scrupulous blogging brethren routinely charge money for posts, but since such "pay per post" f**kery makes both the site and the artist look bad, it's never brought out into the open.

A lot of people are going to be mad at me for this, but I sincerely feel like part of my job is to reveal some of the behind-the-scenes secrets of the music you hear download everyday, and to help prevent new artists from being taken advantage of.

First, believe me, I understand how hard it is to make a living by writing, so I do understand why so many take money in exchange for a post. With that said, such "pay for post" practices calls into question literally everything I love and the integrity of everything I do.

We, as sites, owe it to our audiences to deliver the best and/or most notable music, regardless of the cash being waved around. Let me make this clear. Neither RefinedHype, nor the mothership, has ever or ever will accept payment in exchange for a post. And frankly, no truly reputable site will ever charge for a post.

And for everyone out there saying, "what's the big deal?", here's my answer: If it's no big deal, then why not note which posts were paid for? Yeah, that's what I thought. You may need the money, but don't kid yourself, it's f**kery.

I don't want to make this about one site, it's sadly a rampant problem, but I do want to bring "pay for post' out in the open. Below is an email I received - I've blacked out any identifying details. Sorry to rain on your parade folks, but some of your favorite sites are lying to you. See.....


From: xxxxxxxxxxx
Date: Wed, Dec 1, 2010 at 8:05 PM
Subject: xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To: Nathan Slavik

I’m fucking with this! I can put this on the main page of my website xxxxxxxxx for $100 and ask people to comment on it for real time feedback!

XXL named xxxxxxx one of "The 100 best Hip-Hop Web Sites" in last December’s issue with 50 Cent on the cover

You can send me the payment via Paypal at Once you send payment, send over the mp3, name of artist and single, as well as a picture to that same email address.

Here’s an example of the power of xxxxxxxx. This is one of our most recent posts…



Payola is alive and well in the digital age. F***



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