9 Comments

Summary:

Over past few days, I have been receiving press releases announcing some company, some consultant or some CEO starting a weblog, followed by a quick call from their PR reps! In normal course, I would ignore such press releases, but having lived through the bubble, when […]

Over past few days, I have been receiving press releases announcing some company, some consultant or some CEO starting a weblog, followed by a quick call from their PR reps! In normal course, I would ignore such press releases, but having lived through the bubble, when every company’s dot.com strategy involved similar press releases and flack-attacks, makes me shudder. Blogging has become such a hot trend, that I feel that we are beginning to see in the words of Brett ” a crass exploitation of a hot trend.” Everything from a feedback page for newspapers to fake blogs full of marketing stuff, are now being passed for a “weblog.”

Of course, these are not blogs, instead a pale shadow of an open media phenomenon. They are not fostering “conversation” instead they are drowning out new voices with managed messages. Podcasting, a wonderful new way of some to vocally pontificate has already been usurped by mainstream radio – which believes that putting MP3 files of their news reports amount to podcast. If that is the case, then reuters has the best blog on the planet. After all they are repurposing their content for wires on their website. Is this the future blog-fathers had in mind? Am I the only one who feels that the open media is becoming a victim of its own success, being hyped beyond reality? Just some food for thought …. what do you think?

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  1. I’m not that concerned about it. Authenticity is key in the blogging world, and it’s fairly easy to see through blogs that just use blogging content management software to get the same PR/Marketing-speak out the door.

    I think the blogging community has a lot to learn from the print press and vice versa. I think the problem with every revolution in media is the assumption that one medium will supplant another, when in reality every medium has augmented and influenced every other medium without replacing it. Radio didn’t kill the print press, television didn’t kill the radio, and blogs/podcasts/videoblogs won’t kill the old media. They will however allow people more options, and what will be really interesting will be to see how the new media fares for people’s attention. I think it’ll do really well.

    Once new media is begins attracting a good portion of the mainstream populace’s attention, the old media will have to adapt or die. This has happened time and time again, and this is how things change. You’ll see authenticity making it into the mainstream media and you’ll see the mainstream media adopting a one person, one voice philosphy, because that’s what people will want. Throughout media history, there’s a revolution which leads to an evolution. I’m proud to be a part of it.

  2. Om, Clint’s right. Relax. The reason Open Media is growing towards a dominant position so quickly is that it’s OPEN. The carpetbaggers are bound to show up, and we should welcom them with open arms. We’ll convert a few which is the goal after all, and the rest will either be ignored or waste a lot of marketing money trying to bring attention to their shallow offerings.
    ScottR

  3. Andy Abramson Saturday, May 28, 2005

    I think you are correct. I’m seeing more and more media that isn’t news content being positioned that way.

  4. Its the positioning of non-blog content as blogs is going to cause a shakeout. I think in many ways it might actually be a good thing – the pretenders will go away and we will be left with the truists. But that’s just my opinion.

  5. I don’t know, I just think don’t think non-blog content pushed through a blog CMS is going to attract much viewership. I think you’re right, it’ll definitely cause a stir, but probably unnecessariliy, as I don’t think anyone’s going to read it to begin with. However, I think the larger overarching issue with open media will definitely be directories. Search is the name of the game right now, but with the number of voices out there in the blogosphere right now, I definitely think comprehensive, authoritative directories are needed to help people new to open media find things of interest for them to read. When I first started using an aggregator about a year and a half ago, it took me forever to find people I wanted to subscribe to. I didn’t know what to look for. Perhaps something Netflix-like where a list of recommended feeds is generated for you based off your friends feed lists as well as a survey of your own interests would be popular as a way to get people started with good content.

  6. I don’t think the hype around open media is the problem. It’s clueless CEOs who hire equally clueless PR firms (who then charge the former a lot of money) to advise them on what to do about blogs and open media. Some PR firms get it but most don’t.

  7. mymarkup.net Sunday, May 29, 2005

    Försök till transparens

    Tidningen Spokesman-Review i Spokane, Washington (USA), vill öka genomskinligheten i sitt journalistiska arbete och startar en blogg där fem “vanliga…

  8. New Media Relations Summit?

    We’ve been watching the debate(s) raging between public relations workers, mainstream media writers, “A-list” bloggers (and those who are not), guys like Jeremy Zawodny and other guys like Russell Beattie for some time now and&nb…

  9. Are you asking the question is there too much hype about blogs? Or is blogging just hype?

    I do believe that sometimes trends move in cycles and that people will test blogging for their own purposes believing that by jumping on the blogging bandwagon as they see the trend as a way to get leads and sales directly. What they miss is the reason why blogging works.

    Customers are using the web to communicate with one another, they are comparing products and companies in the industries they are most interested in reviewing. Over the last ten years the ability of customers to self publish and build their own online communities is giving customers the power to easily determine which companies are right for them.

    As a blog gives a customer the ability to self publish, blogs give customers even more power to create their own customer communities. I don’t think that’s hype I think that’s today’s new reality. Look at Amazon.com’s book review function, the reason the website is so powerful is because we can compare and contrast our fellow customer’s opinions about books. Though anonymous posters might be jealous authors (kidding slightly).

    A credible blog add authority to a customer community both in posts to online forums and within a blogging community.

    I don’t believe that blogs are hype or that there is too much hype about blogs.

    Yes, we will see lots of companies announcing they have just launched a new blog, and in some ways that announcement is useful to customer communities as customers can start giving feedback to companies directly to a blog where the customer will know the company will have to answer their questions or face criticism from the customer forum and blogging community.

    The new corporate blogs are not an end in themselves but a reaction to the new blogging economy. Now I agree with several writers here, people will quickly learn what blogging really means and if it works for them continue blogging if not they will stop.

    I’d also throw some criticism to the old media landscape, I see a lot of articles on “what a blog isâ€?, the media is generating some of the hype, why aren’t journalists covering more customer blogs to find out what customers are actually saying and doing?

    John

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