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Ethical disclosure guidelines.

Daniel James

Senior Member
But people can battle and later find a way to co-exist. Daniel James and I had some epic go rounds for a while, but eventually we agreed to disagree on almost everything but be polite to each other.

I don't hold any grudge and I don't think he does either. OTOH, there is one person who only comes here occasionally because of me I think, and I do hold a grudge against him. But when he posts, I just treat him as if I am meeting him for the first time and if I have a comment, make it with that attitude.
I don't hold any grudges to you at all mate. I think you are actually a very valuable member here! particularly when it comes to Logic stuff :)

-DJ
 
OP
Lindon

Lindon

VST/AU Developer
Totally agreed that the forum is very heavy on Kontakt, but I don't know what rules would solve that. I'm not going to tell Mario to stop being helpful. ;)
Mike, can we please please please stop talking about Mario. I for one am uncomfortable talking about him when he's not here (or isnt commenting). I have no problem with Mario, he's a good guy who is genuinely helpful, no one as far as I can see is saying anything different (not me anyway).

To be clear, and if you look back thru this thread you will see I've said this already: this is not about any individual, - you, me, Mario, Jo down the street - anyone.

What I am asking for is a simple guideline that says when you are commenting about a product or service and you have some financial involvement with the product, service or company that provides it you should clearly identify this relationship, and you should also identify this relationship when you are talking about competitor, products or services. I'm not talking about reviews or demos just plain old Sample Talk posts.

I am NOT saying people (anyone) here is maliciously using the forum to promote or detract from a product or service -but we all have bias and I think its only fair when that bias may influence what you say that you make sure everyone else reading your post is aware of your context.

How is this a problem for any fair minded and well intention-ed person, including Mario? (Damn I mentioned Mario again...)
 

Mike Greene

Senior Member
Moderator
...

What I am asking for is a simple guideline that says when you are commenting about a product or service and you have some financial involvement with the product, service or company that provides it you should clearly identify this relationship, and you should also identify this relationship when you are talking about competitor, products or services. I'm not talking about reviews or demos just plain old Sample Talk posts.

I am NOT saying people (anyone) here is maliciously using the forum to promote or detract from a product or service -but we all have bias and I think its only fair when that bias may influence what you say that you make sure everyone else reading your post is aware of your context.

How is this a problem for any fair minded and well intention-ed person, including Mario? (Damn I mentioned Mario again...)
I think I explained this earlier in the thread. To recap -

1. I don't consider the scenario you describe to be much a problem here.

2. New rules often create new problems, so I'm very reluctant to make any changes unless a problem is significant.

3. Maybe I'm wrong about #1 or #2, but this isn't a good time right now, so post a new thread in a few weeks if this is still on your mind then.
 

gpax

Senior Member
What I am asking for is a simple guideline that says when you are commenting about a product or service and you have some financial involvement with the product, service or company that provides it you should clearly identify this relationship, and you should also identify this relationship when you are talking about competitor, products or services. I'm not talking about reviews or demos just plain old Sample Talk posts.
I take a different approach in that it’s nobody’s business whom I beta test for. Part of respecting the NDAs I agree to are my personal policy of also keeping my involvement anonymous. I’ve commented on countless things I’m not developmentally connected to, and a few that I have been a part of.
 

babylonwaves

Senior Member
What I am asking for is a simple guideline that says when you are commenting about a product or service and you have some financial involvement with the product, service or company that provides it you should clearly identify this relationship, and you should also identify this relationship when you are talking about competitor, products or services.
this is difficult. there are people here who're helping others and still, they prefer to keep their involvement with a 3rd party confidential. one good reason might be that those can't or don't want to be a spokesman. maybe they're not entitled, maybe they help in their spare time and don't fancy the fuss doing that with an official badge on. or, they're under NDA and the NDA doesn't allow them to line out their involvement. i don't think we have a problem here, maybe we have a couple of shills but then, they're not really worse than obsessive fanboys.
 

hawpri

Active Member
I take a different approach in that it’s nobody’s business whom I beta test for. Part of respecting the NDAs I agree to are my personal policy of also keeping my involvement anonymous. I’ve commented on countless things I’m not developmentally connected to, and a few that I have been a part of.
Does beta testing always constitute a financial involvement? I was almost involved in beta testing with one company once but never got to do it. I don't really know what's involved. I also haven't been under any NDAs, but I did received an NFR copy of some libraries and have won libraries in raffles, but I digress.

Lindon said:
What I am asking for is a simple guideline that says when you are commenting about a product or service and you have some financial involvement with the product, service or company that provides it you should clearly identify this relationship, and you should also identify this relationship when you are talking about competitor, products or services.
There is a different user experience when receiving something of value at no cost, whether for testing or as a prize, when purchasing the same item, or when you work for the company that created it. I think that's what you're getting at, is that right?

While each hypothetical party has valid opinions and (very likely) some valuable information about a library, it's nice to know where people are coming from while a prospective user is researching and/or shopping around. It's hard to say if knowing is a must. Having expressed that sentiment, with one exception, I don't think it's been a visible(?) issue at VI-C. I've been visiting the forum since 2011 or so. I'm sure the powers that be are already keeping an eye on the forum and will take action if/when necessary.

In the meantime if anyone wants to throw free libraries at me, I have hard drive space. :thumbsup:
 

Kony

Bad ape
I am NOT saying people (anyone) here is maliciously using the forum to promote or detract from a product or service -but we all have bias and I think its only fair when that bias may influence what you say that you make sure everyone else reading your post is aware of your context.
I think this is only a problem if you rely on the opinion of just one person, but I'm not sure many people here do that. It doesn't sound like you would rely on the opinion of just one person so it's not clear what the problem is here.

If there is an overly-favourable reply from a member who is "connected" to a product, that will be tempered by the numerous other comments from other members who are not connected to said product.

If you are concerned about getting advice from a dev because the advice sounds too "insightful" (for want of a better word) and you become suspicious, simply ask that person if they have an affiliation. Simples....
 

gpax

Senior Member
Does beta testing always constitute a financial involvement? I was almost involved in beta testing with one company once but never got to do it. I don't really know what's involved. I also haven't been under any NDAs, but I did received an NFR copy of some libraries and have won libraries in raffles, but I digress.
Some beta teams I have been invited to join offer nothing in terms of an NFR at all. I personally have never received monetary payment as such (though I was sent an unsolicited gift, once), and I’m not sure where money exists as far as non-employee testers are concerned, except where I know contracted professionals have sometimes been involved.

Some in this forum point to the NFR as compensation (and hence potential bias associated), though my investment testing 20 - 40 hours for products that average between $200 - $300 invites a bit more discussion as to what compensation itself means. I’ve finished some beta experiences questioning if I would do another one. For me personally, beta testing is a process of choice where I’m sometimes drawn to being a part of the new thing, or honored to be, but where at other times I may decline, as it’s cheaper to buy it myself in terms of investment of time. But for free product? Not really, as it’s never felt free in the end. That, and beta NFRs represent a small segment of the tools I pay for myself.

How one starts testing varies. I have always been invited to join teams (with the exception of requesting to preview a release of Ableton years ago), the result of which seems to be after prolonged periods of sending feedback, or in the case of a recent invite, challenging their notion of what it means to design for the visually impaired. It’s been said we are all unwitting beta testers in the end, and I agree.
 
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hawpri

Active Member
Some beta teams I have been invited to join offer nothing in terms of an NFR at all. I personally have never received monetary payment as such (though I was sent an unsolicited gift, once), and I’m not sure where money exists as far as non-employee testers are concerned, except where I know contracted professionals have sometimes been involved.

Some in this forum point to the NFR as compensation (and hence potential bias associated), though my investment testing 20 - 40 hours for products that average between $200 - $300 invites a bit more discussion as to what compensation itself means. I’ve finished some beta experiences questioning if I would do another one. For me personally, beta testing is a process of choice where I’m sometimes drawn to being a part of the new thing, or honored to be, but where at other times I may decline, as it’s cheaper to buy it myself in terms of investment of time. But for free product? Not really, as it’s never felt free in the end. That, and beta NFRs represent a small segment of the tools I pay for myself.

How one starts testing varies. I have always been invited to join teams (with the exception of requesting to preview a release of Ableton years ago), the result of which seems to be after prolonged periods of sending feedback, or in the case of a recent invite, challenging their notion of what it means to design for the visually impaired. It’s been said we are all unwitting beta testers in the end, and I agree.
Interesting! Thanks for the thorough response.
 

wst3

my office these days
Moderator
did I just read the word "grudge"?

Folks, it is my opinion only, but if you have a grudge against a fellow musician for something they said about a product you need to seriously evaluate your perspective.

Mike is correct that I took the issue to be much broader when I said that the question comes up frequently. The general question of shills and affiliates and the like comes up more frequently than I'd like it to, but specific gripes such as the OP do not.

We (this community) have scared away some talented folks. In some of those cases I think we are poorer for it. In some cases I think maybe that's just the way it has to be. Talented folks can have quirks, just like anyone else. (I heard someone suggest I have quirks??? Really???)

I like Mario a lot. I find him to be knowledgeable, and helpful, and remarkably generous with his time and knowledge. He is also somewhat outspoken, which (to me) suggests that is far from beholden to any developer. He speaks his mind, he shares his opinions, and he doesn't apologize unless someone can demonstrate he misspoke (which ain't easy - he may be a little outspoken, but thus far he seems to be very careful when he speaks.)

There is also the issue of the internet masking intentions - it is difficult to fully comprehend the message behind the message when all you have to go on is text. I think that has started more dust ups around here than anything.

full disclosure - I have, from time to time, made statements that some considered bold, and I've been called out on them. As long as it doesn't get personal I'll gladly discuss. And when it does get personal I disengage. I have spent a few hours in recording studios, that is the area where I feel most comfortable contributing. I've had some amazing mentors. If I choose to share what I've learned, or question a statement in that arena it is based on my experience, and I try to highlight that distinction, but sometimes I guess I don't do it well. So yes, I have a stake (we all do really) in this. I applaud those that share their knowledge, and I cringe a little bit when they are attacked for it.
 

EvilDragon

KSP Wizard
I am not exactly sure what to add to this thread, but I am glad I'm being appreciated by you lot. I mean... who wouldn't like that? :)


I must say I did consider Lindon's questioning a bit overly enthusiastic, shall we say. It's true I was intentionally vague - because I have every right to do that (free speech and all that). Granted, my contract with NI doesn't state that I should not say to anyone ever that I'm in any way associated with NI (on the other hand, IIRC Steinberg's NDAs do contain such a clause). However I was thinking maybe it seemed obvious that it could be deduced that I'm actually working in some capacity for NI now, after all these years (!) of being the unofficial KSP encyclopaedia. That's the reasoning behind the "put 2 and 2 together" statement I made in that other thread.


Also I want to say that I am really happy that people can read from my posts that what I'm doing on all the various fora is just me being outspoken, speaking my mind without any sort of filter (I find that sort of communication despicable), even if it's a competing product (i.e. Falcon), and sticking with my guns until somebody proves me wrong (which is not an unheard of occurence!). There is no reason to hide behind fabricated personas. I am me, everywhere you stumble upon me online or IRL. I won't stop being me, whether you like it or not.
 
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