What Makes a Blogger Credible?
What is Amanda Congdon? She blogs on her own site, vlogs for ABC News (after leaving Rocketboom) and . . . stars in commercials?
Amanda defends herself:
ABC and HBO both approved the DuPont spots. And under the â€œbloggerâ€ title, which is what I am, hello? I am not subject to the â€œrulesâ€ traditional journalists have to follow.
Isnâ€™t that what new media is all about? Breaking the rules? Setting our own? I see nothing wrong with doing commercials, which is what they, quite transparently, are. If DuPont had tried to pass them off as authentic, homegrown videos, yeah, then that wouldâ€™ve been wrong (and, of course, I would never have agreed to the project if that was the plan). As Sarah Silverman would say, â€œIâ€™d do it againâ€. In a heartbeat. Bring on the endorsements!
ABC says that she’s an independent contractor, and thus not bound by their traditional journalistic principles. And since they approved the commercial, it’s effectively moot.
On the other hand, there are at least a few “rules” that bind both traditional journalists and bloggers. For example, whether you’re a journalist or a blogger, readers expect you to refrain from publishing something you know is patently false.
Yes, bloggers are usually expected to insert their opinion, especially in the “grey area” of blogging, but readers want to read the news and opinions of someone they can trust.
What makes a blogger credible? Obviously, we wouldn’t hold a blogger to the same standard as a traditional journalist, but where would you draw the line?