Thursday, October 27, 2005

Supah Fast Attack Blogs

Damn, we once wanted to work for this lot. There will be much ridicule coming the way of Forbes for this nonsense. The best discussion is likely to come from the real evangelists and the aggrieved.

But the article is spectacularly badly sourced, consisting largely of quotes from lobbying groups, politicians and angry businessmen. And very little reading of blogs. The author seems to have worked out that google owns blogger, but not that blog search engines exist. Otherwise, they wouldn't have quoted this:

"'Wait until the next election rolls around and these bloggers start smearing people who are up for reelection,'Halpern says. 'Maybe then things will start to happen.'"

Five minutes on the mighty google, and we found this from the real media. From 2004.

Blogs gain influence from being consistently entertaining, interesting, and yes, accurate. Most do engage, in well, abject speculation. And snark. Lots of snark.

Take, and this is a half-decent segue into a subject we wanted to bring up, Mr. Gilliard's News Blog. Mr. Gilliard has a nice line in, occasionally intemperate, invective, as well as a habit of flinging around racial epithets in a way that makes white liberals wince. Which p*ssed off one of his advertisers. He claims to be mostly upset that the advertiser didn't have a chat with him first, and owned up to being rather salty.

Does the a-list act nasty? Not quite, although Gilliard and the Rude Pundit certainly have their followers. The hardcore invective atttracts the hardcore, which is a finite, and well-covered, demographic. But the casual blog-readers won't go there. The reporters might, WHICH IS WHY THEY HAVE TO START USING SOME GODDAMN JUDGEMENT WHEN USING THESE SOURCES. Sorry for the caps.

Sleep well.

[Update: Welcome, MIT Advertising Lab readers. In at least one sense, this post harkens back to the golden age of journalism - we were writing this between sucks on a Ballantine's on the rocks. Which is why we just needed to go back and correct the spelling of "aggrieved". But we'd like to add that there's not too much that's courageous about taking pops at a medium one doesn't understand for an audience of avaricious small businessmen. Forbes is utterly brilliant at chasing after the follies of corporations that don't do right by their shareholders. Its take on the wider questions of today is rather poor, though, especially next to that of BusinessWeek.]


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