Participate vs Decline JV?

by John Taylor 20 replies
I was approached with an invitation to participate in
a joint venture today where a number of people had
already expressed their involvement.

When I looked through the list of "contributors" there
was one name that stuck out. It's a person who, in my
opinion, has very questionable ethics. Certainly someone
with whom I would not like to be associated.

What would you do..

  • Participate in the JV anyway?
  • Politely decline the invitation?
..and why?

John
#main internet marketing discussion forum #decline #participate
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  • Profile picture of the author Eric Johnson
    Seems to me like you answered your own question...in a joint venture you are associating yourself with other marketers. You said you don't want to be associated with this person so...
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    • Profile picture of the author lindajess
      Originally Posted by Eric Johnson View Post

      Seems to me like you answered your own question...in a joint venture you are associating yourself with other marketers. You said you don't want to be associated with this person so...
      This is true. If you think someone on the list isn't someone you want to be involoved with, then don't do it. There are plenty of other JVs out there for you to join, granted, it may not be by personal invite, but still. You need to stick to your gut. If you don't like one person on the list, don't join. Your name is going on the same things their name is going on, and personally, I wouldn't want to do that either.

      LINDA
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  • Profile picture of the author Lance K
    Originally Posted by John Taylor View Post

    I was approached with an invitation to participate in
    a joint venture today where a number of people had
    already expressed their involvement.

    When I looked through the list of "contributors" there
    was one name that stuck out. It's a person who, in my
    opinion, has very questionable ethics. Certainly someone
    with whom I would not like to be associated.

    What would you do..

    • Participate in the JV anyway?
    • Politely decline the invitation?
    ..and why?

    John
    So it's one of the vendor's other JV partners that have shaky ethics? How does that affect the value of what the vendor is offering?
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    "You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want."
    ~ Zig Ziglar
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      No contest. If one of the contributors has a bad rep, I want nothing to do
      with it.

      Your reputation is the most valuable thing you own. It's more important
      than your list, your product, everything. Because with a bad rep, none of
      that other stuff is going to matter.

      At least in my opinion.
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      • Profile picture of the author Andy Fletcher
        Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

        No contest. If one of the contributors has a bad rep, I want nothing to do
        with it.

        Your reputation is the most valuable thing you own. It's more important
        than your list, your product, everything. Because with a bad rep, none of
        that other stuff is going to matter.

        At least in my opinion.
        QFT

        I couldn't agree more.
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      • Profile picture of the author Sean A McAlister
        Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

        No contest. If one of the contributors has a bad rep, I want nothing to do
        with it.

        Your reputation is the most valuable thing you own. It's more important
        than your list, your product, everything. Because with a bad rep, none of
        that other stuff is going to matter.

        At least in my opinion.

        I agree.

        I was involved with an offline joint venture and one of the partners started going down the wrong road...this was of course after the successful implemenation of the venture...however his actions caused a mess and the remaining 5 partners (including me) started to get bombarded with our involvement with his shady practices.

        This forced a costly buyout on our behalf to rid him of our organization and regain community trust. Thankfully we moved past it ...and I am unsure as to what happened to him...but I learned a valuable lesson....never do business with anyone who has questionable ethics..or may have the potential to be questionable...PERIOD.

        Sean
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    • Originally Posted by Lance K View Post

      So it's one of the vendor's other JV partners that have shaky ethics? How does that affect the value of what the vendor is offering?
      I agree it doesn't affect the value of vendor's product, but it surely affects the reputation of the JV partners involved in the promotion.

      If you associate yourself with a bad apple, more often than not people will take you for another bad apple, no matter how honest and upright you are.

      Arindam
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      • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
        My own personal policy is to never promote a person who is likely to promote a business or individual whom I would not personally recommend.

        It is impossible to get this right 100% of the time but I find that if I do my due diligence and use this policy when I clearly see the association with and endorsement of undesirable ilk my clients appreciate me just that much more.

        Because my long term goal and current relationship building includes relationships and potential partnerships or investment by companies and groups that play in the big markets on the internet I do not feel it wise to risk promoting, associating with, or recommending such opportunities that include co-branding with crap peddlers and other questionable contributors.

        I think participation in this community is much different than recommending a co-branded JV where your clients may be exposed to relationships that people you would otherwise never recommend are involved.
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Josh,
          I think participation in this community is much different than recommending a co-branded JV where your clients may be exposed to relationships that people you would otherwise never recommend are involved.
          Is it?

          For years, I took grief from some of the spamfighters with whom I associate, because of my involvement here and the long-dead history of spammers being active in the group. There are a few still who think I should distance myself from the place.

          Should I listen to them?

          Ultimately, you have to count on the rationality of your readers and associates.

          I watched an episode of Law and Order:CI last evening in which the question was asked, as closely as I can recall it, "So, I know someone who knows someone who's a crook. Don't you?"

          I suspect that anyone with any amount of real world experience would have to answer either "Yes" or "I don't know" to that question.

          It gets even murkier when you start talking about stuff that's more opinion than objectively wrong.


          Paul
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          Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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  • Profile picture of the author lgibbon
    Banned
    Originally Posted by John Taylor View Post


    What would you do..

    • Participate in the JV anyway?
    • Politely decline the invitation?
    ..and why?

    John
    I'd decline but point out the reason why.
    Maybe if a few more shared the same viewpoint and did the same
    the unethical member might well get the boot.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike McBride
      I think Leslie summed it up quite nicely. Kill two birds with one stone (sorry PETA) - you obviously won't feel comfortable being in any way associated with the contributor in question, and you'd be striking a blow for ethical behavior by pointing out the reason for your declination.
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
      I agree with Les on this one.

      Who knows, The person running the JV might want you as a member of the team vs the other questionable marketer and take action to make it happen. One thing I do know is, You may never know the answer if you don't at make the attempt!

      Have a Great day!
      Michael
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      • Profile picture of the author Lance K
        Sorry, I guess it seems as if this is a collaborative JV effort with multiple contributors. I thought you were talking about a typical host/beneficiary type endorsement promotion. And therefore the others promoting the offer wouldn't affect you.

        As a calloborative effort, I'd do as others have suggested and politely decline and mention that you take issue with the questionable ethics of one of the other contributors. No need to mention them by name unless the vendor specifically asks. Maybe not even then.
        Signature
        "You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want."
        ~ Zig Ziglar
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          John,

          There are a few people in this group with questionable ethics. Should I have my name on the same forum with them?

          Same sort of question, I think.

          Lance makes an excellent point. If it's a bunch of people separately mailing their lists or driving traffic themselves, and the landing page talks about a decent product put together by an ethical person, there's no reflection on you at all.

          It is even possible to participate in a joint venture where your name is seen along side of folks you disagree with. I've contributed to plenty of projects that included people whose ethics I personally find less than satisfactory. If my contribution doesn't add to that, I don't see it as a problem.

          But those were interview collections and the like. Nothing that suggested any sort of relationship with the iffy folks.

          If there's something to suggest a relationship or similarity with the people to whom you object, then yeah. I'd avoid it.


          Paul
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          Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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          • Profile picture of the author Harvey Segal
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            Lance makes an excellent point.
            I expect that from a lance.

            Harvey
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            • Profile picture of the author Keith Boisvert
              Lance makes an excellent point
              Originally Posted by Harvey.Segal View Post

              I expect that from a lance.

              Harvey

              Sounds like Monty Python script.

              Sorry, back to the topic on hand...just couldn't let that slide without mentioning it.

              ~Keith
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              • Profile picture of the author chris_surfrider
                I guess it depends on the "scale" of ethics.

                For example, there's some blackhat marketers out there that essentially create crap websites to generate revenue with adsense, aff programs, etc.

                While they violate Google's TOS, and litter the net, they aren't doing anything "illegal", and sometimes they're just normal people that have methods you wouldn't do yourself.

                However - when it comes to client management, following through on promises and character in general - this is when it becomes black and white.

                You don't want to be associated with people that have a track record of being ripoff artists.

                However, Paul's also got a point.

                I think it may depend on how this thing gets presented.

                If you're a contributor, rather than a collaborator, then you might actually be doing some good. Sort of like a debate.

                But that's where the waters get a little muddy.

                In short - do what you feel is best for your clients.

                -Chris
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                • Profile picture of the author VegasVince
                  In a perfect world I guess we'd all hang out with like minded people and do business with same.

                  People who talked like us, liked the same movies as us, music, and sports teams etc. To me that's a boring world...but a lot people would prefer it.

                  I also believe that someone like Mr. T.... who has established a reputation for honor...and credibility.....and old age (lol) isn't going to lose it because some one else in this JV group....might have shaky ethics.

                  What are shaky ethics, anyway?

                  Often "ethics" are in the eye of the beholder, anyway.

                  Is this guy a criminal? Has he served time in Club Fed? Or is this he someone who just hard sells...and makes more conservative marketers a bit uneasy? I don't know.

                  For all I know he might be a beloved guru...?

                  Cuz a lot of good marketers are considered "shaky" just because of their style and approach?

                  I'd be more worried about gettin' paid on this JV....rather then what other people thought about my involement in it.

                  So long as the dude in "question"...isn't the same dude writin' the check...I'd be down for it. Because I figure the only one responsible for my reputation is me....I made it. I destroy it.

                  So my opinion?

                  If the majority of this JV group is comprised of good members and honest peeps...why would you all give one guy that kind of power to take money away from all of you--- by walking away from money?



                  xxx Vegas Vince

                  Life and Marketing Behind the 8-Ball.
                  November 2008
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                  • Profile picture of the author jhongren
                    I agree with Josh.

                    I have this experience an IMer with questionable ethnics emailed when I first started out.

                    He wanted a product from me for review and he mentioned he has tens of thousands of subscribers.

                    But again, my other IM friends have discussed about his deeds in the IM world in Singapore.

                    So I replied him I will give it a miss.

                    John, I know it is not easy to manage that moment of saying "yes" or "no". We are all humans and we do hesitate a little, not sure if we should do this or that.

                    My personal policy is will it affects my reputation if I do this.

                    My 2 cents,
                    John
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          • Profile picture of the author Chipt
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            John,

            There are a few people in this group with questionable ethics. Should I have my name on the same forum with them?

            Same sort of question, I think.

            Lance makes an excellent point. If it's a bunch of people separately mailing their lists or driving traffic themselves, and the landing page talks about a decent product put together by an ethical person, there's no reflection on you at all.

            It is even possible to participate in a joint venture where your name is seen along side of folks you disagree with. I've contributed to plenty of projects that included people whose ethics I personally find less than satisfactory. If my contribution doesn't add to that, I don't see it as a problem.

            But those were interview collections and the like. Nothing that suggested any sort of relationship with the iffy folks.

            If there's something to suggest a relationship or similarity with the people to whom you object, then yeah. I'd avoid it.


            Paul


            Agree 100%.

            Chip Tarver
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  • Profile picture of the author Floyd Fisher
    I'm with Paul. It totally depends on what it's all about.

    Let's say Paul Meyers runs a firesale to send aid to Burma. Joe Sixpack (who I think is a scamming slug) decides to contribute one of his products to the cause. I'm approached and asked to do the same.

    Why would my name become mud because I contributed to such a cause along with Joe Sixpack?
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