Well, this is a first. As time has gone on here, there have been occasions I have withdrawn my support for a site and/or removed it from my site listings, usually due to a site sale gone bad or some other change in TOS & policy at that site after which I no longer felt comfortable recommending it to others, but usually it's months down the line and after many changes or other aspects that have made it clear to me a site is just not producing like it previously was, or something else is just not kosher or I'm just simply not comfortable with it. Months later. Or at least weeks. Usually.
This is the first time I have felt compelled to almost immediately rescind a recommendation on a site I had just listed and recommended, though. I hope it's a long time before it ever happens again, if ever, 'cos it really bothers me to have to do it but I can't in all good conscience let my previous recommendation stand.
To make a long story short, I have removed my original review and recommendation post on HalfPennyClicks, and will be editing the last post to remove its links and direct a link to this post I'm writing now.
Yes, I was very pleased with how quickly my balance was progressing there and it seemed like one of the better PTC finds I had come across in recent months. However, after receiving an e-mail updating members on how payouts were going that mentioned that after five (5) payouts, members would be required to upgrade in order to get paid again - and after a brief discussion with the admin in e-mail about it in which I explained why I would be rescinding my recommendation if that were the policy - I deleted my account and am removing links from here on the site.
A year's upgrade at the site is, granted, only $2.44 annually at this time. That's not a lot of money, no - and actually is a pretty good deal, and an upgrade I probably would be very interested in (since I don't usually upgrade anyway except at long-established sites like ClixSense, MatrixMails, WordLinx, etc.) - IF it weren't a requirement to be paid by the site.
However, I informally agreed some time ago - as did many other active members and site owners in the community - not to support sites that made upgrading a requirement, rather than an option, in order for a member to get paid. Not only do we feel it's not right, but there are some other very important reasons for not supporting this practice that I won't go into here. If you've been very active in PTC/PTR/GPT for very long, you are probably aware of those reasons.
I am well aware (highly aware) that there are an awful lot of PTCs out there and competition between them all is probably very high as far as getting active members and especially large-scale advertisers - but as many of us who participate often at GPTBoycott's forum have discussed over the past year or so, anyone who opens up a PTC or PTR nowadays should not only be fully aware of that but prepared for that, and members shouldn't be forced to bear the cost of any lack thereof - not to mention the other very valid reasons there are not to institute such a policy.
I personally gave up a fair amount of money earned at another PTC site last year after struggling over this issue, and after months of trying to decide what to do about it and a large amount of discussion with others active in the community, many of whom were also members of the same site, made the same decision to stop actively supporting the site after that site changed their terms of service for members. It was well profitable for a while, but at that point the principle of the whole thing mattered a whole lot more than the money did.
Consequently, I lost $2 earlier this year on a year's upgrade for a site that had been around a while, but disappeared shortly after I upgraded. It wasn't a required/forced upgrade to get paid, and yeah, it was only $2 - I thought that was a pretty good deal, and it was... until the site disappeared (and apparently is indeed gone for good). I've always been pretty picky and choosy about where and who I upgrade with - for one thing, it's not feasible for most people to upgrade EVERYWHERE - and then things like that happen, so naturally I'm even pickier and choosier. ClixSense, MatrixMails, WordLinx, other long-established and well-established sites - they're not going anywhere. A few other sites, maybe, where I would feel comfortable and consider it a worthwhile risk that probably wouldn't even be a risk (Readers Pond, for example). Past that, I get REAL picky and choosy about where I'm going to spend extra money, but if it's a requirement rather than an option - ethically, I can't support it.
So there you go, and my apologies to anyone that signed up under me. I'm not sure whether this policy was already there at the time or not, or whether it JUST came about, but the e-mail earlier this week was the first I'd seen of it, and for that matter, even the site's own Site Statement & Disclosure on the front page states: "We do not require you to pay any fees ever to join and participate in our site." I guess maybe they ought to modify that to read "for the first five rounds of payouts" at the end of the sentence.
If you like the site and like how things are going there for you and are happy to pay the upgrade fee after your first five cashouts, then hey, it's a great price for upgrading and I wish you much luck. I just wish it was an option rather than a requirement, because that's why I can't support their policy. I harbor no will against the owner, wish them well and success, and am not out to get anyone - on the contrary, I'm quite disappointed how this particular venture turned out. It's just as simple as the fact that I agreed to not recommend and thus support sites that require members to upgrade in order to get paid, so yeah, I have to withdraw and rescind my previous recommendation.
Okay - well, enough of that one. I have also removed a few other sites from the listings for various reasons...
I waited a while to see if GoldMineClicks was going to reappear, and have asked around a bit about it, but nobody seems to know anything and it's still gone, so I have removed it from the active listings. Kind of surprising on that one since it had been a BeenPaid.com Seal of Approval site, but we've certainly learned things like that aren't always a guarantee.
AdverBux may or may not be closed - I understand some have been able to access the forum - but I have not been able to get this site to load or, on one or two occasions, load without severe amount of problems for weeks, and pretty much since its return after disappearing for several weeks with a "we'll be back eventually" type of message on the site. With its $20 minimum cashout, not having performed very well for me in over a year of effort with it, and all of the above problems, I am just taking it off my active listings whether it's actually closed or not. I couldn't tell you if it's really closed or not because it hasn't loaded for me in weeks, so for me, it might as well be closed anyway.
I don't think I ever had a review/recommendation post on it, but I did have TitanClicks listed on some sections of the site regarding PTC and have removed it from those. It has a rather high cashout minimum as well, low-paying ads, and carried about 4-5 ads per day all this time (over a year) that I've been a member, and maybe added one new ad in that entire time. With that kind of performance, it's just not worth it to me.
I have also removed the recommendation and review on Fantasy Ads, as someone sent out an email from there the other day stating that all site activity was being suspended due the owner's emergency admittance to the hospital and that all payments were suspended as well.
Things like all of the above are the not-so-good part of PTC/PTR/GPT (mostly PTC), but fortunately there are a lot of good, established, and trustworthy sites around too - a few of which I have linked to in this post, many more that are scattered around the site. Sometimes even the well-established and honest ones have surprised us all too, yup, but honestly I think if you just keep your ears and eyes open to warning signs, read a lot of blogs like mine and others (I have a whole bunch I read every day in the sidebar), and talk with others at places like GPTBoycott and BeenPaid.com - and keep in mind that all/most of this stuff is free money and don't depend on it as if your life depends on it - for the most part, things are still good. There are still a lot of great sites and very good owners out there, I'm not going to let a few not-so-great apples ruin my day when there's terrifically well-producing apple trees out there.
And I'm not going to recommend any I'm not pretty comfortable with to you if I can help it. This situation here was a very major one that I absolutely will not support anywhere, but the policy either just recently got made or slipped by me - and the disclosure on the front page sure doesn't jibe with the policy, so I guess it was just one of those things and again, my apologies to anyone who was misled by my recommendation.
Even though I review and recommend and post a lot of sites here, there are more (actually some I have shelved posting about very recently) that I don't because while some of them may be fine, there may be something that makes me not 100% comfortable with recommending it.
On the other hand, just because one is not listed here does not mean I don't recommend it at all or think there's something wrong - like GPTs, I don't sign up with a lot of other GPTs these days anyway, so there are many regular old general GPTs that aren't listed here that I'm not a member of and most are probably perfectly fine GPTs... some even that I'm acquainted with and think highly of the owner - I just don't take on many new (to me) GPTs anymore, I stick with the ones I have already and don't seek out many new ones anymore.
In any case, if you ever have a question about any programs, listed here or not, I will be happy to answer them if I'm familiar with that program - you can always e-mail me at missmoneyhunter at gmail dot com (in proper e-mail format, of course).
OK, enough of all of that - onto bigger and better things for today/tonight!