UPDATE: Phil at Feedblitz got back to me with a brief response. The news is not good. Feedblitz ads are outsourced.
PREVIOUSLY: Reader Jennifer emailed me Tuesday making a case for why I should not have accepted a political ad for Rick Santorum that ran in Tuesday’s email (not on the blog):
I know that you need to accept ads in order to make a living from your newsletter, but I think you might want to rethink accepting political ads. Most of the ads on your site and news letter are for services that save people money so there is an implication that you endorse these advertisers and they endorse you. Rick Santorum is a very polarizing figure, while some of your readers may love him many people rather viscerally hate him. I am guessing that your readership is predominately female. Given how strongly many women feel about Santorum’s attacks on
women’s access to effective birth control and pre-natal care I would not be surprised if you lost readers over today’s ad encouraging your readers to donate to Santorum’s campaign. People really dislike political ads. I know quite a few who refuse to watch network TV or listen to radio stations aimed at adults for months before elections in order to avoid the political ads. I’m sure it’s tougher finding advertisers who want to pay to advertise on a newsletter that encourages people to save money and spend what they must wisely than it would be if you were writing about crafting but I question whether accepting political advertising is a good long term strategy.
Here is my response:
I’m so glad you emailed me. And I agree completely. The political ad you saw for Rick Santorum was accepted by Feedblitz, the email software we use to send the daily email, not me. I repeat, I did not accept or receive any money for this ad.
The Feedblitz software is free, but the “cost” is that Feedblitz puts its own ads in the newsletter. Until now, it’s never been a problem.
I’ve emailed the owner of Feedblitz to complain and will let you know his response. In the meantime, I’m going to blog about this because I want to let all my readers know how this ad came about.
I hope this clears things up!