:Ben Metcalfe Blog

I have decided to create this page to disclose any potential conflicts of interest and disclose gifts, benefits-in-kind, etc – and to reiterate the independence of my writing.

With the rise of paid-for blog posts in the blogosphere and bloggers sometimes gaining financial interests in entities they write about, I have decided it is important to declare my position on these too.

This is effective Nov 1st 2006, last updated Dec 15th 2010

Professional interests
I am an independent consultant currently engaged with numerous clients. My client list remains confidential although I will always disclose a client if I mention one in a blog post.

I am an advisor and/or shareholder in the following companies:

Advertising disclosure
This blog does not carry advertising or sponsorship. I am now using Amazon Affiliates when I link out to products on Amazon, but the cost of them items remains the same regardless of whether they are affiliate-linked or not.

Posting policy
I write about topics that interest me, both personally and professionally. I do not participate in any pay-for-post type programs nor do I accept money, gifts or any other such payment in return for posting on a particular topic.

My blog is independent from my client work. I do not write posts upon the solicitation of my clients, although I reserve the right to decide to write about my client work where I believe it has merit or is of interest.

Financial interests
I hold a nominal £ value of shares in TMN Group plc, a UK based online direct marketing firm publicly listed on the London Stock Exchange.

I hold a significant $ value (but insignificant %age) of Constant Contact shares NASDAQ:CTCT from their aquisition of my shares in NutShellMail.

Other interests
I am not a member of any political organization, charity or professional body.

As a former long-serving BBC employee I am passionate about the values of the BBC, and its importance in modern media and wider society. I continue to promote the work of the BBC – and criticize it when appropriate.

Gifts and benefits-in-kind
The following is a list of all gifts or benefits-in-kind that I have received that I believe to be over the value of $30.

  • Google Cr-48 ChromeOS laptop, by Google (Dec 2010)
  • Google TV, by Google (Dec 2010)
  • Expenses paid trip to LikeMinds Conference in Helsinki, by Nokia (Jun 2010)
  • HTC Evo 4G Android phone, by Google (May 2010)
  • Motorola Droid phone, by Google (Apr 2010)
  • HTC Hero Android phone, by Sprint (Nov 2009)
  • HTC MyTouch Android phone, by Google (May 2009)
  • LG Viewty phone, by LG (Jan 2008)
  • 12 months complimentary internet access, by Web Pass (2008)
  • Apple iPhone and complimentary conference ticket for speaking at Office2.0 Conference (Aug 2007)
  • XBox controller for Windows, by Microsoft (Nov 2006)
  • 40gig external hard drive, by Microsoft (Nov 2006)
  • Awarded a 32″ LCD TV as a prize at Yahoo! Hack Day, by Sharp/Yahoo! (Oct 2006)
  • Loan of a Lenovo IBM X60s ThinkPad laptop, by Lenovo (Aug 2006)
  • LG ‘Chocolate’ mobile phone, by LG (May 2006)
  • XBox 360, by Microsoft (May 2006)
  • Complimentary ticket to Mix06, by Microsoft (Mar 2006)

This list does not include items obtained via public offers, competitions or promotions, through which I applied or participated simply as a member of the public. These include free software giveaways, raffles/prize draws, etc. It also does not include meals, drinks, party invitations or corporate hospitality.