In December 2009, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. The guidelines require that any affiliate who uses reviews, rankings or testimonials to promote products must clearly disclose the fact that they receive compensation for doing so.

Regular readers of GoutPal will realize that I’m not bound by this. Much as I would love to, I do not live in America (yet?). Most visitors to GoutPal are USA based. I would love to address you as “my fellow Americans,” but I can’t. I will settle for “my fellow gout sufferers,” and hope you will understand.

Though I am not legally bound by that legislation, I respect and honor the reasons behind it. Far too many sub-prime products and services are sold to gout sufferers. Personally, I cannot see the point in spending anything on gout beyond the cost of daily allopurinol, and a few months of pain relief whilst it does it’s job. Oh, and perhaps the occasional gout-slogan gift if it’s funny enough.

However, I realize that millions of gout sufferers do spend money on gout products and services.

As I do not use these, I cannot fairly endorse them. But I can make money from linking to reputable suppliers, so I do that to keep my gout support services free. I cannot guarantee that the odd bad supplier will not bypass the quality checks. I cannot guarantee that any of the products will truly help your gout. But, I can guarantee that the small commissions paid by the vendors will get put to good use.

What do I mean by small?
These vary from supplier to supplier. Typically if you spend $100, I will get around $3-5. This is cheap advertising for the vendor, so it helps keep their costs down and they can give you better value. The commission is taken from their profit – you do not pay any extra than you would if you bought direct. The only time you might get a better deal is for repeat business. If the supplier offers existing customers a discount, you should take advantage of it. If they do not, you should bookmark my page, and click my link again when you want repeats.

What do I mean by good use?
I guess only you can be the judge. Millions of people use my gout advice, and nobody has ever complained about the quality of that advice. A few people complain about the quality of my website. To them I say “Yes, I can probably do better,and I’ll strive to improve, but I’ll always be better than you, you moaning bastard.” Actually, I don’t say the last bit, I just think it :-).

Disclosure: Next Steps

I’ve been open and honest about my intentions. I invite you to be open and honest about your experiences with gout products and services. Please share the good and the bad in the Gout Resources Forum.

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