points to Fortune's
article on corporate blogging -- "Why
There's No Escaping the Blog
." It's a pretty long piece and pretty
well done, too.
Some nice info on how Scoble's honesty is helping to improve Microsoft's
it came to the criticism emanating from Boing Boing, Scoble simply ...
agreed. "MSN Spaces isn't the blogging service for me," he wrote.
Nobody at Microsoft asked Scoble to comment; he just did it on his own,
adding that he would make sure that the team working on Spaces was
aware of the complaints. And he kept revisiting the issue on his blog.
As the anti-Microsoft crowd cried censorship, the nearly 4,000 blogs
linking to Scoble were able to see his running commentary on how
Microsoft was reacting. "I get comments on my blog saying, 'I didn't
like Microsoft before, but at least they're listening to us,'" says
Scoble. "The blog is the best
relationship generator you've ever seen."
That last sentence in Scoble's quote is the kicker. I think Sun has
come a long way to implementing that very thought with the blogs on BSC
and the other Sun blogs not hosted
on BSC but aggregated on Planet Sun
I talk to developers and system administrators for the OpenSolaris
project, and they all say they are reading the Solaris engineering
blogs. And more are commenting now, too. The conversation is, indeed,
well under way. And I can easily point to the benefits in my own little
Here are a couple of Sun bits from the article:
biggest chunk of the 5,000 or so corporate bloggers comes from
Microsoft, but others work at Monster.com, Intuit, and Sun Microsystems
-- where even the company's acerbic No. 2, Jonathan Schwartz, gets in
on the action. (A recent Schwartz post openly criticizes competitor
Hewlett-Packard: "Yet another series of disappointing announcements.")
blogging boosters Microsoft and Sun have hit bumps. Microsoft fired a
temp who posted photos of Apple computers sitting on a company loading
dock. Sun CEO Scott McNealy was urged not to blog after he showed trial
posts to company lawyers and colleagues. "I've got too many
constituents that I have to pretend to be nice to," he says.
I still want to see Scott blog, don't you? :) My goodness ... can you
imagine it? I asked him about it once when I saw him walking around MPK
(Menlo Park campus). He just laughed. Loudly. :) Oh, well. So much for
my influence, eh?
Blogs are bumping into all forms of communication:
are challenging the media and changing how people in advertising,
marketing, and public relations do their jobs.
Blogs are just the latest tool that
makes it harder for corporations
and other institutions to control and dictate their message. An amateur
media is springing up, and the smart are adapting. Says Richard
Edelman, CEO of Edelman Public Relations: "Now you've got to pitch the
bloggers too. You can't just pitch to conventional media."
I can understand this position. I spent nine painful years pitching
messages in PR
. But I'm out now, and I have a different perspective.
Why must everything be a pitch to deliver a message no one believes?
And why pitch bloggers? Why perpetuate the bad PR that the PR industry
so richly deserves? Why not simply read blogs to understand the
issues and the communities trying to interact with a company. And why
not simply blog right
along with those communities and join the conversation? In other words,
skip the pitch. Your message is now delivered through the medium of the
conversation -- which tends to only support credible content. This
article is just filled with stories of companies who joined the
conversation and benefited and companies who didn't and got burned.
There are some good stories about Kryptonite, Dan Rather, Mazda, and
Six Apart. All worth reading. These stories, though, have to be
especially terrifying for companies that are still missing this little
phenomenon. Oh, well.