Bloggers Blogging, Negativity, and Disclosure
I had a feeling Valleywag was going to say something negative about the Scoble why-didn’t-you-link-to-me thing, and I was right, but I was certainly surprised by the negativity, number of posts (four), even taking a low blow by analyzing traffic numbers, and comparing Scoble to John Kerry. But that’s Valleywag’s job, I guess. Monday, monday…
So if you want to witness Scoble answering disheartened bloggers’ questions and bantering back and forth with Nick Denton of Valleywag and Mike Arrington of Techcrunch, check out the comments on Scoble’s post.
And as for Scoble, I feel some disclosure was certainly in order. I’ll continue to read his blog because it’s funny and informative, but it’s always a bit disillusioning to learn yet another one of the bloggers I admire is as succeptible to outside influence as the mainstream media reporters I choose to ignore.
Once a writer loses the cloak of objectivity, everything they write from then on is questionable. One of the best parts about most blogs is being outside of traditional, big, old media spheres of influence. That’s why I can forgive an amateur blogger’s spelling mistakes, shoddy design, and occasional factual errors (me included) – because they’re a relatively honest voice.
But I suggest bloggers keep it real and answer the question “Why Do You Blog?“. Put it on your About Page (please create one if you don’t already).
I don’t care if your reason for blogging is for money, influence, alleviating boredom, or getting free swag. I can understand a blogger being mostly about the money and getting more traffic, as long as they’re up front about it. It’s when you say you’re about one thing but act as if you’re about something else that people start to doubt your credibility.
It’s worth remembering from Scoble’s example that the very open nature of the internet means that criticism and bad news – fairly deserved or not – travels quickly with no prayer of damage control. It’s the ultimate check and balance.
That’s all I want to say about this subject. I’m just going to write about crap I want to write about on this blog and be glad I have a day job that doesn’t much influence anything here, except how much time I can spend blogging.