This was in the news some days ago. I'm moved to give an opinion on the topic because I do product appraisals here (& elsewhere). Rest assured, I'm in no way sponsored or paid by any commercial entities in furthering their commercial interests. I'm the guy who represent the other guys at the receiving end. Most of the time, our opinions tend to be personal but we return to being objective at the end of the day because we have no vested interests in any products out there. Our opinions are for the common good.
The article just signalled a whole other level of desperation in the open market because in this cyber age, producers are dealing with a different set of vantage points as opposed to the past. It is called appeal. Who better to trust than the people with a personal take on the products when it comes to appeal. But we now know that behind the veiled enterprises lies desperation & companies are willing to stoop this low to get their numbers crunching. If reputation is of importance to these people, they would've thought twice about such engagements.
As for me, I'd like to be friends with fellow gear geeks out there, more importantly, I wish to manifest a fair representation in the midst of it all. There's no point being too inclined to a certain brand name or commercial entities for that matter (stores, distributors, etc.) because we are dealing with differentiation- we are all different, we have our own preferences, your honey might be my turd, vice versa.