Funny story, back when BT were running phorm they were kicking people off their forums for posting the truth about the implications of allowing a company associated with malware, access to user's data without their knowledge. A shill posted with his real name and sure enough he listed his phorm involvement on his linkedin profile where he was boasting of being their marketing droid. After posting a copy of his public linkedin profile he attempted to get me banned from the forums however since google had cached it then I was able to prove that after he had deleted his profile that the information was in the public domain and so they had to reinstate my account, for a bit longer anyway.
As to your bronze badge, I am sure I could have one too but then again I would need to post with my account name which, since I am not a shill actually means something to me. Being as I only have the one
For those who genuinely want to become a shill and cannot get into marketing otherwise then I suggest setting up your own product review website, post up some bogus replies supporting your opinions and then contact manufacturers asking for products to test and review. One guy I saw on Amazon did just this with his review there being exactly the same as on his website but without the bit where he admitted that he had got the item in exchange for his review. If enough people believe your spiel then advertising and direct bribes are presumably the next step.
Most people here have, I presume, been around long enough to understand that not every post or review is unbiased and so I would imagine they, like myself, will make their own minds up about what they read.