Keeping Transparent About Sponsors

Posted on Jul 18 2011 - 2:30am by Mike Lieberman

This is post that I was debating about writing or just letting it pass. I decided to write it because I have been so vocal about having sponsorships. I thought it was only fair.

Last week, I wrote the post about Miracle-Gro being organic and how I didn’t care. In the comments of the Facebook thread, someone mentioned that one of my sponsors was selling Round-Up.

If you’ve been following along the discussions, you would know that this is a product of chemical gardening that I speak out against (some might say too often). When I checked out the link provided for me, sure enough MasterGardening is selling Round-Up.

As I bring new sponsors on, I usually do my due diligence to look into them and what they are offering. Their offering of Round-Up is something that I completely missed. It was a mistake on my end. I don’t fault or blame MasterGardening. They were not trying to trick me. I accept full responsibility.

As soon as I found this out, I cut off ties with MasterGardening and have refunded them. I have nothing against them and appreciate them wanting to be a sponsor. If I would have realized from the beginning that they were selling Round-Up, I wouldn’t have started the relationship.

The reason that I am writing this is because I want to be upfront and honest with you about what’s going on. I don’t want to just sweep it under the table and act like nothing happened. By doing that I think it would be a disservice and disrespectful to you.

What do you think about the situation?

40 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. anotherkindofdrew July 18, 2011 at 2:13 pm -

    Dignity, honesty, value, is a collection of things missing both in RL and in the virtual. Thank you for restoring some of that and keepin’ it real!

  2. Violetlin2011 July 18, 2011 at 2:15 pm -

    I think you handled the situation appropriately and I’m glad you aren’t a sellout! 🙂

  3. Suzy July 18, 2011 at 2:15 pm -

    Thanks! It’s awesome that  you stand so firmly on your principles.

  4. Bodyn Soil July 18, 2011 at 2:31 pm -

    You check your sources, as you say, but one got in under the fence. I don’t fault you for  it, as soon as you learned of the Monsanto Link you did what you needed to do. I enjoy your writing and your work, you are a solid resource for information.

  5. Kip July 18, 2011 at 2:57 pm -

    Thanks!

  6. Spirit Horse Herbals July 18, 2011 at 3:04 pm -

    Two words. You. Rock.

  7. MicronCat July 18, 2011 at 3:16 pm -

    Miracle Gro is Organic?

  8. MicronCat July 18, 2011 at 3:16 pm -

    Miracle Gro is Organic?

  9. MicronCat July 18, 2011 at 3:16 pm -

    Miracle Gro is Organic?

  10. Julie July 18, 2011 at 3:57 pm -

    Appreciate your integrity.

  11. Mary C. July 18, 2011 at 5:30 pm -

    I applaud you for it. Shows your integrity, also gives us UOG followers a chance to delete that sponsor from our bookmarks 😉

  12. ali titus July 18, 2011 at 5:41 pm -

    i agree with everyone else, it shows your integrity and honesty.

  13. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:53 pm -

    Thanks bro. I do my best while maintaining sanity.

  14. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:53 pm -

    Thanks. I’m glad too.

  15. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm -

    I do my best. Thanks for the support.

  16. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm -

    Thank you much.

  17. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm -

    No problem.

  18. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm -

    Two words – Thank you!

  19. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:54 pm -

    They do have some product that are organic.

  20. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:55 pm -

    Appreciate your support.

  21. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:55 pm -

    Thanks. I enjoyed my relationship with them and dont’ have any hard feelings.

  22. Mike Lieberman July 18, 2011 at 5:55 pm -

    Doin my best.

  23. Anonymous July 18, 2011 at 6:05 pm -

    Great work, Mike!

  24. Mike July 19, 2011 at 12:29 am -

    I think you acted admirably. It takes integrity and honor to turn down cash, so you can stand by your principles. 

  25. Mike Lieberman July 19, 2011 at 1:42 am -

    Thanks Helen.

  26. Mike Lieberman July 19, 2011 at 1:42 am -

    That’s what I’m hoping for…

  27. Juanita Wright July 19, 2011 at 10:57 am -

    You did great, sweetie.  I’m proud of you..for being up front with us all and for standing up for yourself and your beliefs.  So good to see such commitment and honesty.  Hugs to you. 🙂 

  28. Mike Lieberman July 19, 2011 at 1:14 pm -

    Hugs back. Thanks.

  29. Tris July 19, 2011 at 1:16 pm -

    You did what you said you would do from the start.  I sure wish more people would take a page out of your book.  Keeping oneself true to their word and responsible for their actions is what we should all be striving for.  Thank you for setting a good example, Mike.

  30. Mike Lieberman July 19, 2011 at 1:32 pm -

    Thanks doin my best to be honest and turn a buck 😉

  31. Kirsten Opland July 19, 2011 at 4:47 pm -

    I think its good that you’re willing to reevaluate your sponsors. Thank you for being so honest with your readers, it makes me trust this site as a reliable source of info.

  32. Kirsten Opland July 19, 2011 at 4:49 pm -

    I think its good that you’re willing to reevaluate your sponsors. Thank you for being so honest with your readers, it makes me trust this site as a reliable source of info.

  33. Mike Lieberman July 19, 2011 at 4:57 pm -

    Thank you Kristen.

  34. Dawn Mischler July 22, 2011 at 7:16 am -

    Thank you so much for such a strong statement of honesty.  THIS folks is what INTEGRITY looks like.  Kudos Mike.

  35. Mike Lieberman July 22, 2011 at 1:52 pm -

    Appreciate it Dawn.

  36. Dreamkiller August 4, 2011 at 2:25 am -

    Mike- I think you approached this in a very professional way.  You were fair to the sponsor, but also to yourself & your cause. I think not only will this sponsor get the message, but this also sends a very clear message to other groups that organic gardening isn’t just a “fad” or a “whim”.  It’s a conscious choice, a way of life and it’s more than just a mission statement.  My mom used to always tell me to “protest with my feet” when I wasn’t happy with a situation- whether it was dealing with an out of touch political representative or a power-hungry professor- kudos for the social leadership.  Hopefully more will follow your lead. 

  37. Mike Lieberman August 7, 2011 at 4:44 pm -

    Thank you for the kind words and comment. It was something that I wasn’t sure whether to address or not, but thought it best to keep open about it.

  38. Mike Lieberman August 7, 2011 at 4:44 pm -

    Thank you for the kind words and comment. It was something that I wasn’t sure whether to address or not, but thought it best to keep open about it.

  39. Mike Lieberman March 15, 2012 at 4:38 pm -

    Good catch. I haven’t been associate with them for months now 😉

  40. Connie February 24, 2013 at 6:40 am -

    Work at westlake and both miracle grow and round up are Scott’s products how funny is that guess they are playing on both sides of the team

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