Nick Shabazz

Nick Shabazz

Gear Reviewer, YouTuber, and Jackass-of-all-trades
YouTube - Instagram - Patreon - Merchandise

Nick Shabazz Review Disclaimer

Hello, dearest maker! Thanks for reaching out for me to offer a product sample for review. I do very much appreciate it! That said, I want to make sure that we’re on the same page, so please read through this, respond to my message with a quick “I agree to your terms”, and I’ll get you my address. Thanks!

So, more than anything else, I owe it to my viewers to provide an honest and fair review, and every review I make looks at the Good, the Great, the Bad, and the Ugly of whatever’s on my table.

This means that in addition to talking about the fact that the item’s been sent to me for review by the maker, I’ll be highlighting the strengths and any failings of your product. And in the final conclusion, I’ll be giving a straightforward verdict, which could be anything from “This is a gem, pick one up” to “Not bad, pick it up if you want” to “This is junk, don’t even think twice”. If you’re looking for this to be a glowing advertisement in exchange for a freebie or a ‘5 positive instagram posts and a positive video’ influencer interaction, I’m afraid I’m not your guy. You’ll get an honest and fair review, but no punches will be pulled. Even a positive review (“You should buy this!”) will include discussion of any bad and ugly, so you still need to be prepared for both sides. All of my criticism is intended to be constructive, and I hope that, even where you disagree or there are other mitigating factors, it may help you to see how some in the community might react to choices you’ve made.

In addition, there’s a chance that, even if I accept your offer and you send me an item, if I feel like I cannot recommend the item, or it’s just gonna be a bloodbath, I may just send it right back to you without a review. I’m happy to briefly offer my reasoning, or to convert it into a stealth review (where I can either have a one-on-one discussion with you about my feelings, provide a private video, or write it up, in exchange for a small fee for my time). But at this point, I’m trying to focus on gear which isn’t substantially flawed, so sending the item is not a guarantee of review, and the review being filmed is not a guarantee of endorsement or positive recommendation.

Also, unless it’s personally helpful for me, for fact checking or to coordinate release with your availability (usually for items which are very good), I don’t share videos or recommendations with makers before they go public, and under no circumstances will I submit videos or posts to you for ‘approval’ (and if that’s a desire, please don’t send me product). I also don’t play the whole ‘you must make [this many] social media posts’ influencer game. I may post your product, or maybe not, depending on my life and the needs of my channel. I need to be real, or my opinion, positive or negative, will mean nothing to the people you’re trying to reach. And of course, the comments section belongs to my viewers, for better or for worse, and although you’re welcome to post as well, I won’t censor it to your request.

Finally, right now, I’m not interested in reviewing ‘limited run’ items. These include ‘limited editions’, numbered (1 of 500) runs, ‘single run’ or ‘flash batch’ products, or other products where the maker has ruled out making additional batches. I will make exceptions for exceptional work, and I’m happy to do stealth reviews on any products, but if your product will not be regularly available for purchase 6-12 months after the review, not only is that super ugly and quite frustrating, but it makes the video completely useless after the product sells out, and encourages no shortage of hate and unhappiness in the comments. I understand that small ‘drops’ or repeated smaller batches are a reality of life for many makers, and that’s fine as long as more are coming, but at this point, I’m tired of ‘limited run’, and such items are not eligible for consideration for ‘gear of the year’ or any other such honors.

Regardless, if you or your company would feel angry or lawyery at the thought of your product’s dirty laundry being aired in a review, or at the idea of a non-recommendation, it’s probably best we just skip the whole affair. I just don’t want you to come out of this feeling sad or “ripped off” or angry, even if I don’t love it as much as you think I would, and if you’re not able to stomach an honest (and potentially negative) review without anger or threats, I’m not interested in working with you, and I hope you’ll not bother taking this any further. I know most of this is to-be-expected, but I’ve dealt with some real jerks to whom this wasn’t ‘common sense’ at all!

Again, I really don’t mean to set a poor tone by sending this, but being honest about the good, great, bad and ugly is my only way to protect the integrity of my channel and make my positive reviews actually mean something. But know that I hope your product is excellent, I’ll be able to strongly recommend it, and we’ll both be very happy that I got to take a look!

In terms of timeline, it can take me up to a month to carry, write the review, and film, and I tend to film in advance. Right now, it could be a few months before your item’s review would go live on the site. We can potentially discuss a ‘rush’ if you have a deadline or launch date, but that would only apply to airing the resulting videos, I’ll still need time to use the product.

If we’re on the same page, and you agree that sending this product for review could result in the good, great, bad and ugly of your product being aired, without your prior ‘approval’ or any other strings attached, that’s awesome, please respond with a brief “I agree to your terms”, and I’ll get you my shipping information!

Again, thanks!

Addendum (July 2020): Lately, I’m more and more interested in saying great things about great products, and bringing visibility to the best-of-the-best, rather than spending time on “ho-hum”, “it’s OK but you’ll forget about it in three days” sorts of products. Now more than ever, please don’t be offended if I decide to return your product unreviewed, if I don’t feel like there’s an interesting story, value proposition, novelty, or I don’t think this is going to be a compelling option for my viewers. This doesn’t change anything I’ve said above, and this should allow me to look at more gear and keep a more open mind about new brands, products and categories. Thanks!