FREE GEAR & PAID PROMOTION – What you need to know

Open letter to brands

The Woody Piano Shack YouTube channel is a hobby and a passion project, not a business. I make videos “for fun” or “for the views” and absolutely not “for the money“.

Making music has been my passion for 40 years and Woody Piano Shack is my platform to share my joy of the hobby and to help and inspire others.

My aim is to cover interesting and varied topics that will attract new viewers and help grow our community. For this reason I am always open for opportunities to feature new and exciting music technology products.

I do not accept payment to make videos nor do I expect free gear. A loan arrangement is ideal for me.

If I want to purchase your product for my personal use then an “artist discount” is appreciated but absolutely not a demand.

FInally, please be aware that I’m not in the business of making sponsored promotional videos or advertisements. My ambition is to make unbiased and balanced reviews where I share my opinions on both the pros and the cons. That’s something my viewers have come to expect from me.

I look forward to collaborating with you!

Kind regards
Woody Piano Shack

Paid promotion

Occasionally I am offered a free product in exchange for video content. If the product is 1) something that I want and 2) interesting for my audience then I may accept.

A physical product has value and is therefore a form of payment and must be disclosed to the viewers. YouTube provides a “Paid promotion” checkbox which must be checked when appropriate.

I will tick this checkbox when the primary purpose of my video is to showcase hardware that I received free of charge. I will also tell you about any such arrangement when introducing the product for the first time.

An equipment loan from a company or acquaintance does not qualify as paid promotion.


Software licenses enable me to make video demonstrations, tutorials and reviews for which I am very grateful.

A software license issued for review purposes cannot be transferred or sold and therefore has no monetary value.

I never “own” the software and some review licenses expire after an evaluation period such as 3 months. The software vendor may revoke a license or terminate a subscription at any time.

It costs the software vendor nothing to send me a license and there is no financial reward for myself.

For these reasons I do not consider free software as payment or paid promotion. I will of course be transparent and let you know about my relationship with the vendor, but the “Paid promotion” checkbox is not applicable.

“No such thing as a free lunch”

Keep in mind that nothing is actually free!

In return for the “free” item, I am expected to produce one or more high-quality videos that will take several days to research and produce, plus all the studio equipment, tools and skills that are required. The videos will be shared with my audience that took several years and countless hours of work to build.

Thanks for reading this post, it’s incredibly important to me that I am honest and transparent with my viewers.