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Death of Legit Referrals?

The other day, a friend of mine remarked how he'd found a high-quality repair service through a business he'd had dealings with in the past. The business, when asked who they used for repairs, quickly and kindly replied with the truth. The referral was of high quality, because it was based on legitimate experience.

But on the internet, and elsewhere, scores of individuals and groups are being convinced that it is in their best interest to refer people to the highest bidders. The arena of friendly information exchange has become Kickback City.

"Hey Hans, who cleans the Nakatomi Plaza?"

"Oh, my buddies in the Asian Dawn, of course."

"Great, thanks, I'll hire them to clean my place."


"Hey Roy, where are the freshest Twinkies sold?"

"Not here, pal."

"Good to know. Thanks, you just saved me a few bucks."

"Try that place up the street, I've had good dealings there."

"Will do."

I'm sure there are people who, because they simply haven't found a way to monetize their advice, offer up the truth freely. But so many others are fine with spreading virtual lies…

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