UploadVR’s Code of Ethics

last updated November 21, 2017

At UploadVR, we always strive for accuracy, objectivity, impartiality and integrity in everything we do. We are champions of the industry, but we are also advocates for the consumer. Because of that, we believe transparency of our standards and practices is paramount.

Disclosures and Conflicts of Interest

The content team at UploadVR acts independently of both internal and external forces, and assignments are distributed in such a way to avoid potential or even perceived conflicts of interest. In the case of an unavoidable conflict of interest such as a personal or business relationship between the author or creator and a third party, we will disclose the nature of the relationship within the content itself to provide full transparency to our readers and viewers.

We want UploadVR to be a platform for a variety of voices and perspectives in the VR, AR and MR industry, so we occasionally ask those within the industry to provide their perspective or thoughts on a particular subject. In that case, we will clearly identify the author of the opinion so our audience understands their relationship with the product or service on which they are commenting.

We do occasionally accept travel, lodging and meals as part of our coverage, but only if those accommodations are determined to be reasonable and bring value to our users through coverage opportunities. UploadVR employees may accept t-shirts, pens, bags and other promotional or coverage-based products up to $60 in value, but may not accept any monetary compensation or items that are directly transferrable to an equivalent monetary face-value such as gift cards, gambling chips, stocks, checks and the like. Items over $60 in value are considered property of UploadVR, not individual employees. Employees are exempt from this gift policy if the item in question was available to the general public or all attendees as part of a giveaway or promotion at trade shows, conventions or similar events. Occasionally we will donate items we receive to charity or use them for giveaways.

Gifts, travel, meals and any other items or services received from external contacts do not factor into our coverage considerations or opinions.

Corrections and Updates

Although it is always our intention to report accurately, we acknowledge that mistakes do happen. In the case of an inaccurate report, we vow to clearly update our story with the correct information and disclose what was corrected. Note that minor typos and grammatical errors may be exempt from this kind of disclosure, but if the meaning or context is changed by an update we will disclose within the piece what was altered.

If additional context becomes available after a story is originally posted, the new information will be clearly denoted within the content.

Attribution, Sourcing and Plagiarism

While we strive to use original sources whenever possible, in cases where stories are collected from secondary sources, we will clearly credit the source and link to the original story if possible (eg. if it is published online). Unless specifically noted as a quote, content produced on UploadVR is original and unique. All quotes will be properly attributed so our audience understands the source of such information.

We do not pay sources for special access, knowledge or news, nor do we provide special favors from other branches of the Upload, Inc. family for inside information. On the rare occasion we use an anonymous source, we will verify the validity of that source before publish and we will protect that source’s identity.

While researching potential news stories, it is standard practice to reach out to companies or individuals in an attempt to get their side of a story and give them reasonable time to respond before publishing.

Occasionally we may determine an unverified story is important enough to report. In these rare circumstances we will always disclose such stories as rumor or speculation as well as reach out to our myriad sources to either confirm or deny. At UploadVR, we believe that disproving rumors and conjecture is just as important as verifying them. If there’s a story you believe we should be aware of, please let us know about it at [email protected].

Embargoes and NDAs

We see products and services throughout their lifecycle. Because of this, we often have to sign non-disclosure agreements or agree to embargoes before we can make information public. UploadVR never promises positive editorial assessments or critiques in order to secure information, and agrees to embargoes and NDAs only under the strict condition that we are entitled to our own voice and our own opinions.

UploadVR does not agree to NDAs or embargoes on products or services that are publicly available anywhere in the world.

Review Policies

At UploadVR we are committed to providing independent, unbiased product and service reviews devoid of external influence and input. We decide on the products and services we critique, and we do not disclose review scores to outside parties prior to a review being published on the site.

UploadVR does accept complimentary access to products or services for review, but that doesn’t color the tone of our critique. We work with publishers to secure early access for product reviews, and occasionally publishers will ask us to review products in a secure location outside of our normal process. If this is the case, we will disclose that in our review.

If we alter a review for any reason outside of a minor typo or grammatical error or if we change a score, we will make the changes apparent and explain to our audience why the changes were made.

While we may give our impressions and thoughts on pre-release content, we will not offer up a final, scored evaluation on early-access products and services.

You can read more about our review policies and see a detailed breakdown of our scoring system in our Review Guidelines.

Guest Posts

At UploadVR, we believe it’s important to hear from a variety of voices and perspectives from around the industry. To that end, we occasionally publish content from external writers, sources and content producers who are not employed or compensated by UploadVR. In these cases, we will provide a brief bio of the author to ensure our readers understand the context for the piece and the connection the author may have with the broader industry. These types of posts are also disclosed on the site with text that reads “This is a guest post not produced by the UploadVR staff. No compensation was exchanged for the creation of this content.”

Sponsorships and Promoted Posts

UploadVR accepts paid sponsorships, but we will always provide transparency into what is an advertisement or promoted post so our audience understands the difference between editorial content and paid content. Any sponsored or promoted posts will be labelled clearly, both on our site or on third-party distribution channels such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Direct sponsor messaging, advertiser-provided pieces and sponsor-approved content are never produced by anyone at UploadVR who reviews products. In addition, sponsorship and advertising agreements do not affect internal coverage decisions.

Sponsored content on UploadVR and our third-party distribution channels falls into one of these clearly-labelled categories:

  • Promoted Content
    Content that is produced solely and independently by the UploadVR content team, but a sponsor has paid for special promotional placement of the content either on the site or on social media or other third-party channels. Disclosed on the site and third-party channels with the tag #promo.
  • Sponsored Content (Three Types)
    1) The production of this type of content is underwritten by an advertising partner for brand alignment consideration, but the partner has no input into the creation of the content itself. The UploadVR team has complete creative control over the content focus and final product. Disclosed on the site with a “Sponsored” tag as well as with text that reads “This is sponsored content which has been produced by UploadVR and brought to you by [sponsor’s name]. [Sponsor’s name] did not have any input into the creation of this content.” Disclosed on third-party channels with the tag #sponsor.
    2) This type of content is created in conjunction with an advertiser or sponsor, with input from both UploadVR staff and the sponsor. While a sponsor may have input into said content, advertisers cannot claims to the quality of any products – either positive or negative – within the content itself. Partner content such as this is never produced by anyone at UploadVR who reviews products. Disclosed on the site with a “Sponsored” tag as well as with text that reads “This is partner content that has been produced in conjunction with [sponsor’s name].” Disclosed on third-party channels with the tag #partner.
    3) This type of content is created solely by the advertiser or sponsor; the UploadVR team is not involved with the production of this type of content. Even though no internal resources are used in the creation of sponsor content, our guidelines to our sponsors note that the advertiser cannot make claims to the quality of any products — either positive or negative — within the content itself. Disclosed on the site with a “Sponsored” tag as well as with text that reads “This is sponsored content which has been provided by [sponsor’s name].” Disclosed on third-party channels with the tag #ad.

UploadVR also partners with companies to provide giveaways to our audience. While we see this as a service to our users, such giveaways should not be seen as an endorsement or recommendation of any product or service.

Affiliate Links and Ecommerce
We occasionally post product deals and maintain partnerships with major online retailers. While we do earn a commission on some of the products we link from our site, our opinions are not for sale and our recommendations are not influenced by paid promotions or affiliate programs.

Personal Social Media Accounts

While the UploadVR and other Upload, Inc. staff will often post about UploadVR content on their own personal social media accounts, the opinions they express on said accounts do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Upload, Inc.