Truth in advertising: what does "sponsored" really mean?

The feed for Xeni’s latest video says,

Sponsored by Ascent by DaVinci, a vaporizer we think works really well.

I can’t tell what that means because BoingBoing uses the term “sponsored” as a euphemism for paid advertisements that are produced under the sole editorial control of the advertiser. And while it seems likely that Xeni’s video is under Xeni’s editorial control and is merely “underwritten” (a term used on the click through page in addition to “sponsored”) by the maker of a product she personally aproves, I can’t actually tell based on the wording.

I’d love it if BB could make these distinctions clear going forward, perhaps by calling 3d party paid ads “Paid Advertisement” rather than “Sponsored”?

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Are we using “sponsored” euphemistically? I believe we have consistently used “advertisement” to refer to stuff advertisers control and “sponsored” for stuff they brand against but which is under our own editorial control.

It not, we can make sure we adhere to the distinction properly in future or otherwise ensure there is no ambiguity whatsoever.


Second sentence of the excerpt/post says “a vaporizer we think works really well.”

Cool. I’m actually a fan of advertising in the sense that I really enjoy being able to read and interact with BB for free. I just think it’s good to know whose voice is talking at any given time.

That doesn’t say who had editorial control. Even before Rob’s post I provisionslly assumed it was Xeni, but the phrase you quoted doesn’t necessarily imply or entail it.

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