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Old January 13, 2010, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by aristhrottle View Post
As for payola, I doubt every home entertainment magazine and website has been paid off. I was going to offer some sort of expectancy effect - the reviewer knows that it is more expensive so he expects it to be better - but I don't really think that's it either.
I think a part of it is simply pragmatism. Put simply, these magazines/shows/websites owe their existence to the existence of high-end stuff. If there's no difference between the $1 cable and the $150 cable, or the $200 amp and the $2000 amp, or the $500 television and the $5000 television, etc, why are they even around? In order to justify their presence, there NEEDS to be "something better" for their readers to aspire to, and for them to showcase in their upcoming issue.

Of course, in all fairness, the flip-side of this argument is that there IS some real, genuine crap out there. And when something is bad enough, the quality of the output actually WILL suffer. But it's difficult to know where that line is, and there are plenty of people willing to take advantage of consumer uncertainty.
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