Blogging "Blogging for dollars" for dollars

sun10sep2006—36w253d69%— 14h19m00s—0utc

Blogging for dollars is the pretty good, pretty interesting cover article from this month’s Business 2.0 about how the mainstream blogs (MSB? WP) like Boing Boing, Fark, Metafilter, TechCrunch ELZR, Digg or Dooce are monetizing their traffic. Thorough and filled with lots of $ data, what surprised me the most about it was how obviously promotional it was. It’s basically an extended infomercial on blog-advertising, which doesn’t take away that it makes several good insights on media and how technology is turning us into one-man-bands ELZR, but, still, deliberately mislabeling content is just an euphemism for lying.

Ever since I read Paul Graham’s The Submarine I had been on the lookout for PR campaigns and this is one of the clearest (or should I say most blatant?) examples of it I’ve seen. The client? That’s an easy one, John Battelle’s Federated Media1.

Why do the media keep running stories saying suits are back? Because PR firms tell them to. One of the most surprising things I discovered during my brief business career was the existence of the PR industry, lurking like a huge, quiet submarine beneath the news. Of the stories you read in traditional media that aren’t about politics, crimes, or disasters, more than half probably come from PR firms..

Trend articles.. are almost always the work of PR firms. Once you know how to read them, it’s straightforward to figure out who the client is.

Paul Graham, The Submarine

1 Its website is well worth a visit since they provide some small but interesting data on their blogs’ traffics and advertising rates — Reddit, for instance, has almost a million readers per month and charges 14 bucks for a thousand “impressions”.

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