Because this blog is moderately popular, I've been getting a lot of requests recently to do link exchanges or promote other websites in exchange for goods and services. Here are some things I've been offered:
1) Free BLS/ACLS (which I get for free anyway)
2) Free scrubs (which I don't use)
3) A free book (that I probably don't want to read)
4) A chance to have my site linked to on their site!
5) A free boring article that I can bore my readers with
6) Very rarely, money
If it's money, I sometimes consider it, but the truth is, these interactions are way more trouble than they're worth. Is it really worth $100 to me to have some crappy ad up that I have to tweak like a dozen times before they are happy with it? I spend more than that every week on groceries.
So in general, I just ignore all these emails. And some of them get ignored for me, since they get filtered directly to the spambox.
But hey, I can't blame people for trying. You've got a product you want to promote, so you're doing what you can. I can't fault them for that.
What pisses me off is when I ignore them and they try again. I feel like that takes gall. Like:
"I'm still awaiting your response to see if you'd like to post a link to my site in exchange for a big pile of crap sent to your doorstep!"
Clearly my ignoring people does not send a strong enough message.
At some point, I got really sick of this. A woman sent me several annoying emails saying she wanted me to write an article for my blog, and then have that article link back to her website. Finally, I said okay, and I gave her a topic. She wrote the article and I said that it wasn't what I had in mind, and I asked her if she could rewrite it completely differently. She did. Then I said it still wasn't what I had in mind and I didn't publish it.
I felt a little guilty. But seriously, she started it.