Thursday, December 18, 2008

This is why I love my family!

This comment is by my cousin Cassie Ford, a second year law student at Vanderbilt on my Ethics paper. She really inspired me when I read it, and I can honestly say I wouldn't have been able to finish it without her. Thanks Cassie!!

Your Cousin said...
Urmm, this was extremely long, however, since I'm avoiding my work, I read- I mean skimmed yours.

I agree with eliminating blogger ethics. No point in policy that no one follows. The blogging experience is about reflecting the honest nature of humanity, not the psuedo-PC news spoon fed to the public by major media. Furthermore, bloggers allow the consumer/citizen to hold these companies, gov't officials and other powerful institutions accountable in a way that they couldn't do as effectively before (like the Dollar Tree insurance lawsuit and the Jena Six fiasco). I think a standard of ethics for blogs, if upheld, would decrease the flow of information in a way that inspires activism by the common citizen.Most bloggers aren't making money on it, so why have ethics standards to the level of NYTimes? Why have them at all?

Of course, some will say that the vulgarity, libel, and offensive remarks will get out of hand, but what are these remarks but a reflection of the people in our society? I think Americans especially have been coddled into the belief that the world is a places of wholesome values, but that's just not true. We are in constant progression as a human race and our major media outlets do not reflect this. While I love a good media bashing, I can't help but examine our own encouragement of blissful ignorance. Until recently, the public demanded a disconnect between reality and our media coverage. I think the major interest in blogs has resulted from the backlash of the disillusionment the public felt after (insert major failure by Bush administration that could be seen a mile away if you watched BBC, NPR, foreign news media outlet). I think the novelty of raw honesty (if not truth) is the push behind the blogger media movement.

The down side is that I could see blogging backlash happening. Frankly, we are seeing the evils of 24 hour news in general and eventually people will get sick and tired of it. Blog readership will probably feel the backlash of this when happens.

In the mean time, I'm going to go check my favorite blogs (The Black Snob/ Secret Council of American Negroes) while blogging is still in vogue :-)
(Off to finish my own paper)

DECEMBER 18, 2008 4:09 PM

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Compensation: A right and wrong way to do it?

I noticed on Twitter today that several bloggers have been given $500 gift cards by KMart to write about the savings you can earn at KMart by shopping there. They are also giving the bloggers gift cards to give out to readers and subscribers who retweet their post or write a comment describing what they'd buy from KMart for $500. After retweeting their URL's to enter myself into the contest (cause who doesn't want $500 from KMart?!?!?!), I tweeted "With all the people Retweeting Chris Brogan, I'm guessing no one has sees credibility issues with taking compensation? Great! Me neither! ha" to which blogger Chris Brogan replied, "@erob1 - the key there is disclosure. Say it up front. Be clear. Provide info. Done. : )". So I wanted to check and see, was this experiment with social media by KMart "upfront"?

In class in October, we talked about citizen marketers getting compensation for blogging from companies and whether or not it adds to they're credibility, and in this case, I don't think it does add much. I mean every blogger had some form of disclosure or disclaimer stating that they were compensated/sponsored for their post, but where is the connection to what they are blogging about? blogger Jeremy Schoemaker wrote a full post about the KMart and Izea campaign, including pics of his shopping trip with quirky comments and all, but what does that have to do with what he posts about, which is normally financial stuff and tech stuff. Also as of the time of this post, Sears Holding Corp., for KMart, had not released a press release about their campaign and I couldn't find anything about it on Izea's site...why not???

I agree that disclosure is important but can you really pick and choose what to disclose and what not to? Doesn't that defeat the whole point of transparency?

I hope this doesn't take me out the contest :-D


I didn't realize that Chris Brogan didn't have a post on his blog because he did it on another blog, Dad-o-matic. But still, where's the KMart backing?