The conversation between Chris
Iâ€™m flattered that I made a list of Seattle area bloggers, but not starry-eyed enough to accept the invitation to come and be cooed over by the TV people, no matter how sincere they may seem about recognizing my significance. See, I have been, and plan to continue, commenting upon and sometimes criticizing KOMO-TV, and many other media organizations. So, I prefer not to drink their booze and eat their hors dâ€™oeuvres, thanks all the same. I guess I canâ€™t help thinking Iâ€™d have a harder time blogging about them afterward, and that theyâ€“KOMO-TV and Mr. Pirillo, the self-styled self-promoterâ€“would like that very much. [Dave Newton]
There are similar incidences in the Philippines. Globe Innove sponsored a blogger meet up late last year. SM Hypermarket sponsored a similar type of event a few weeks ago, and next month, a rebranded Mrs. Fields will be doing something too. Why do big companies do this? Three reasons, off the top of my head:
- A sincere wanting to know more about the “new media” industry. Writing about them is a bonus.
- Old school marketing ideas are so saturated. Events here, events there. They’re willing to try something different.
- A misconception about bloggers as sellouts. Bad.
There are distinct differences between bloggers and journalists. The latter rule mass media as we know it while the former, like it or not, make up the bread and butter of new media. PR agencies are slowly starting to include “new media” as part of their full circle + 1 campaigns which include TV, radio, print, and the Internet. Blogs happen to be the middle of the iceberg that commands a following so great that it can be used to influence.
This brings me to reflect about my stand on PR events and media. I was once a full time editor and have now remained a contributor and “supplier” to various publications in the Philippines. Ever since I joined b5media in 2005, I slowly graduated to new media efforts because I found blogs to be a “productive use of wasting time over the Internet” and it just hit me one day — that damn, I’m in the industry. And I never looked back.
I can understand the scrutiny that some bloggers and people in mainstream media put with bloggers and their independent media adventure. But I believe that scrutiny can only go so far. Several bloggers in the Philippines disclose their self-made PR policies, and who can blame them – they aren’t journalists – they’re regular people who like to write about things they are passionate about.
I will say now that I’m Pro Industry, where “industry” refers to technology and new media in the Philippines. But please take it to mean very differently from the term “sell out.” I like writing about the positive things in the industry (most of the time) because I want to help foster growth. I believe in free speech and all that, but I am also attuned to helping spread the word about achievements and intelligently criticizing the “mistakes.” At the end of the day, everyone wins. That was one of the philosophies behind the Blog and Soul Movement.
I understand well where Dave is coming from and its well respected. It’s what keeps him THERE. He’s been in the industry for quite a while, and I only for only three years in this little “publishing” industry where everyone knows each other from editor to talent to photographer to stylist to the printer.
Besides, I don’t think I carry the title of “journalist” on my sleeve anymore. I’m a new media guy with publishing industry roots. Even if these roots were just grown for three years.