Recently, a mid-sized publisher (Thomas Nelson Books) offered to send free review copies of their books to bloggers in exchange for a review. The review could be positive or negative, but they had to put it on their blog, Amazon and the like.
The reaction from some of the bookerati has been swift and damning. According to posts like this and this, bloggers who signed up for the reviewing deal were selling out by agreeing to give a review in return for a free book. So 'real' book reviewers pay for their copies, do they? I think not. This is simple case of 'only the special people can do it'. While I have mixed feelings as to whether or not most of these reviews will have any value as guidance for potential purchasers, I think to suggest that bloggers are selling their souls for free books is condescending and unpleasant.
I don't doubt that this is a marketing ploy - but so are all reviews from the publisher's viewpoint. It's unusual (and quite cunning) in the requirement to post the review on Amazon. But the reaction has been totally out of proportion to the action.