I would like to know the proper etiquette around removing sponsored links on the bottom of a free blog theme. I don’t mean a link to the designer and their site–I mean some have links to other types of services (or multiple links and/or in some cases to foreign sites) that have nothing to do with the theme.
I am flirting with a cool new look, but I dislike some that have links that serve no purpose (example, my customers wouldn’t use a link to a German site for example). Also, some of them are encoded and if you mess with them, the footer breaks.
I have a real problem with theme designers forcing the users to keep sponsored links intact. In my opinion you are not obligated to do so. Some may argue with me on that…but whatever..that is my opinion and I have in the past removed links like that for clients. For the encrypted ones, there is a way to remove the code but it’s a real pain.
The best solution, again in my humble opinion, is this: select a different theme and don’t support theme designers who include sponsored links on their themes.
Amy, I would choose another theme. Or, create your own from scratch that has a similar style. I would be weary of removing the sponsored links in fear of some sort of legal action being taken against you.