If we think something is newsworthy or cool or fun, we write about it in one of our regular, editorial emails, for free. No one pays us for editorial coverage.
In order to pay the people who write our editorial emails and ourselves, we sometimes run sponsored posts. These are advertorials, which we try to make as useful and interesting as possible. You'll know the difference between our editorial and sponsored content because we either mark it as a "sponsored" post and note it as a "Dedicated" email in the subject line, or we state clearly that we got something free in exchange for a writeup on Brooklyn Based.
And if someone we know happens to become the subject of one of our stories--because we do have friends and partners doing cool things in Brooklyn--we make it clear that there's a personal connection.