Interesting discussion on blogging ethics on Jamie Goode's wine anorak blog here. The discussion arose because a number of food bloggers decided to put a paid for advertising feature from a coffee brand on their blogs. Some bloggers made it clear that this was a paid ad, while others didn't.
I can see no reason why bloggers shouldn't accept advertising and sponsorship if they wish to, providing it is made clear that this is a paid for advert. Just like when a magazine runs an advertorial it should be clear that this is an advertisement. Indeed I can't see that the rules that ought to apply to magazines over disclosure of trips, samples etc. should be any different than those that apply to bloggers. The sole difference being that until recently the decision over what to disclose has been in the hands of a relatively small number of people – chiefly editors and publishers. Now with bloggers being writers, editors and publishers and the explosion of blogging many more people have to keep asking themselves am I behaving ethically.
Now that Jim's Loire is becoming reasonably well-established we do intend to take advertising and sponsorship, although not from individual Loire growers, négociants or coopératives. The ads will be separate from the blog. I think it is very unlikely that we would accept advertorials.