The Corporate Blogging War Has Officially Started
Eric Kintz has a provocative post today about a blog slap fight that is breaking out between HP, IBM and Dell over data center cooling claims. What’s interesting is the involvement of ZDNET’s Dan Farber as referee.
This incident poses the question of how an organization can use its blog to bypass the traditional neutral role of the media to take its case to the public without Fourth Estate intervention. Does it? To an extent — the success of a corporate blog in such imbroglios depends on the reader’s appetite for the company line — a form of devalued media ruined over the years by the terrible reputation of public relations. But, if the blogger is working from a position of credibility in the professional and user communities, there is no reason why their claims wouldn’t carry the impact that a neutral observer’s would.
I can recall many a slap fight between two vendors waged — at snail pace — in the pages of PC Week. Without a medium to express themselves, organizations turned to the press. Now they can make their case or counter claims on their own.
As Sam Whitmore said, “We’re all media now.”
The NYT business section today has a piece on the inflated page view numbers at Entrepreneur.com, Heavy.com, Forbes.com and elsewhere caused by the nefarious practice of serving pages whether or not a user requested then. It is boggling to imagine that in this day and age of transparency in all things, that a publisher would stoop to an uninvited pop-up to drive pages.
The other practice that marketers need to take into account as they further plan their interactive marketing plans is the ugly practice by publishers of using an ad serving engine like DoubleClick to force a page refresh on a user whether they request it or not. This is a very popular tactic to push at-risk campaigns over the top towards their goals.
Another nail in the coffin of ROS display advertising. From the article:
“The concern over pop-up content goes beyond traffic numbers. Many advertisers pay premium prices to reach readers of certain Web sites. Through pop-ups, these advertisers may find their orders are being fulfilled with low-cost page views that users never requested and may never have seen.”
I lost the blog to a corrupted table in the MySQL database that drives this blog yesterday around noon. I swear I didn’t do my usual shoot-self-in-foot move that has hosed this in the past. It was one of those random blog farts that required the good host at Cape.com to sweep in and run the REPAIR TABLE command. The sysadmin just called with the good news that all was restored.