The FTC has released new guidelines for advertisers. One of those guidelines is that advertisers of diet products cannot have a famous (and formerly fat) person stand there and tell you that they lost 48 pounds in 48 days and you can to if you will just give them $480. Most people understand that they only thing that will lose weight in those schemes is your wallet. It is good for the FTC to demand a bit of realism there.
The FTC also says they will restrict bloggers from talking about products where they received the product or service as a gift in order to elicit the blogger’s review (favorable or unfavorable). There are some services out there that will help you get free products as long as you talk about them on your blog. I think these sites and services will be out of business soon.
For the record, I have never received a gift or any compensation for any product that I have discussed on this site. I will regularly complain about or rave about my iPhone and its various apps. I will also complain or rave about other products and services. I have never been compensated for these products or have any relationship with the vendor.
All that being said, if Apple would like to give me a new iPhone 3GS, I would be happy to blog about it. I would include the disclaimer that Apple gave it to me for review. If Apple wants to do this, they can contact me and we will work out a deal.
ADDITIONAL UPDATE: Yes, I am aware that the government regulation on gifts to bloggers was only that the blogger must declare the gift in the process of the review. I implied above that the gifts were no longer allowed, which doesn’t appear to be the case.