The Chicago Tribune just published (yet another) list of 24 awesome gifts for any wine lover created by BestReviews. The list of items is all well and good, but I'd like to see better.

Here's my beef

The list is wide and not particularly well researched. It's a shopping list, with all links for the recommended products in the article pointing to Amazon. This is an affiliate / commission exercise, as mentioned in the byline at the end of the article:

What's going on here? You see this article, recognize the Chicago Tribune as a respected content source, click in and read the recommendations. The actual basis for the recommendations are not identified. What is written is typical marketing copy full of potential benefits. Not really any editorial or experienced judgement based on actual use of the products.

You presume credibility due to the content host - The Trib - and click a link to see the recommended product on Amazon. BestReviews and The Tribune now earn a commission on whatever you might buy on Amazon. They're making money on YOU.

Why am I irritated?

Because it isn't authentic. They're using the credibility of the Tribune to recommend products that may - or may not - be very effective. Is just light fluffy content designed to capture your click and associated affiliate commission.

For example, under the Wine Preservation section - an area we know quite a lot about - they recommend the Coravin Pivot and VacuVin. I am totally on board with the Coravin Pivot recommendation. It's an argon based preservation product, which as we've detailed why previously, is the best preservation method for open bottles of wine.

But, the recommendation on the VacuVin is not a good one. As we've described before in another article "Vacuum Pumps Suck - by Design and Poor Science", vacuum products are not effective in preserving the fresh taste of open bottles of wine.

So, my beef with articles like this is two fold. One, the recommendations are designed to earn better Amazon affiliate commissions for the content writers and hosting site. And two, the actual recommendations are not based on legitimate data or experience on what may be an effective solution to the problem.

If you want to preserve your open bottle of wine, and enjoy a fresh tasting glass whenever you want to pour it, then our experienced recommendation is to chose a wine preserver that uses 100% argon gas. That is one of several products - the Coravin line of devices and catridges, ArT or VineyardFresh, and our own product Silvadore Wine Preserver.

Know Before You Go - We Have an Incentive

YES - we make money when you buy our product. There - we told you clearly what's in it for us.

We're not hiding our incentive behind a large newspaper masthead or burying notification of an affiliate commission incentive in the fine print at the end of the article.

We know wine preservation, we know what works, and we know what a good recommendation for a wine preserver should be.

End rant.


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