The Blurring of Blogging: A Reply
Further to my posting about AkibaLive, and my comments that it was a marketing tool masquerading as a blog, here’s the owner’s reply (I won’t post his earlier message, since as he says, it was “fired it off in a state of unexpected agitation”):
Your blog about AkibaLive has an evident tone that we are somehow trying to mislead, or conceal, our identity. That is far from true, and really does reflect a lack of diligence. “AkibaLive is a Dynamism.com blog” is right there on the home page. At every point that we talk about a Dynamism product, for instance, the headphone review, we further state that AkibaLive is a Dynamism blog. If you poked around a bit, these things would be evident. (Douglas Krone)Now, one very well may dislike the idea of blogs being used for marketing and customer relations. That a strong position with a strong argument to be made. There are plenty of good and reasonable ideas that support that view, but implying we are misleading people is not one of them. Do we really, “conceal their identities to adopt the persona of blogs to peddle their wares?” Is that a responsible statement? Personally, I think a clarification is in order. Of course, it’s your blog.
And here’s something from one of the editors, Matt:
I recently read your thoughts on the creation of Akibalive.com. As one of the editors of Akibalive I have to say that, while you are of course entitled to your own opinion, I believe you have overlooked what we are trying to accomplish/portray ourselves as. The Akibalive.com site explicitly states that it is a Dynamism.com blog. Also, the products currently being blogged, for the most part, are not products being sold by Dynamism, rather they are products we feel the Dynamism customer base would be interested in. If we post information about an upcoming computer release, someone reading that information gets the facts (release date, specs, etc.). Whether or not there is a person or a company behind the site, the way factual/informative news is presented to an interested reader should not matter. When and if we decide that we want to use Akibalive.com as more of a direct marketing tool for Dynamism?s products, we will make sure there is no confusion that Akibalive and Dynamism are one in the same. For example if you take a look at the Noise Reduction Headset Review (http://www.akibalive.com/archives/000198.html), you will see: Sony MDR-NC20 ($149) and MDR-NC11 ($149) are available from Dynamism (www.dynamism.com). (Dynamism is the parent company of AkibaLive.com.)
Clearly there is no ?marketing gimmick? or concealed identity and by no means do we want there to be.