I was totally wrong

I'm often wrong, but I was really wrong on something I wrote six years ago.

Error one: Amazon doesn't lead to more specialized retailers. Shopping search engines do that. Amazon has a huge affiliate program, allowing people to tailor Amazon to specialized audiences (but these affiliate marketers can also upsell to specialty stores).

Error two: ads are paying for blogger content. I was totally wrong on that one too. Sponsorship works because blog ads are more effective than mass market ads. Of course, this doesn't mean all content is sponsorable -- some kinds are not, like the kind I wrote about. My opinion was influenced by the early adopter writers, who were not motivated by profit.

I was right about the line between content and ad blurring. Engadget is a good example. It's not one-sided, and might criticize, but doesn't criticize the idea of buying gadgets. That kind of advertorial is already common in magazines, but is even more popular online, on sites like Tom's Hardware.