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Monday, June 17, 2002

"Official Story," Meet "Trusty Spokesperson"

From Dave Rogers of Connect and Empower: Can Blogs Find A Place In The Corpocracy? Dave examines Sean Carton's article [at] about the blogging Macromedia folks and the future of corporate blogging. As Sean writes, "Rather than create mini-sites on the company site where they could post tips and commentary about the products they work with, employees created spaces outside of Macromedia -- spaces that would be instantly believable and useful to their legions of fans." Dave rightly observes it is naive to think that every corporate or corporate-related weblog will involve "an authentic human voice:" "Do they have to look over their backs while blogging lest they inadvertently offend those in the executive suite?" Will corporations permit employees to "rant and rave with freedom?" I think we're all waiting for those questions to be answered in real life and real time. The portent of the tea leaves may lie in Sean's observation that "blogs are intensely personal forms of expression; after reading someone's blog for a while, you may feel that it connects you with the writer in a way not possible with any other medium." This means the tendency of a blog to be compelling is inversely proportional to its tendency to be canned, "correct" (from a political or marketing standpoint), or filtered through anything beyond the writer's own sensibilities and conscience. Dave's skepticism about the legitimacy of corporate blogs is well-placed, but I'm betting Darwin will have something to do with how things play out. P.S. - Jenny points to Sean Carton's piece too.

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