Are You Reading An Objective Opinion Or PR?
First and foremost Google Hangouts don’t always work the way you want them to… for some reason I was never clear on the feed so for that I apologize, you wont’ get to see me or my T-Shirt du jour. But we won’t get into that. I will do my best to edit and muddle through this in order to not let this conversation loose steam.
Have you ever stopped to consider where do you go for your latest news? Regardless of your industry or niche? Does it matter? Do the resources or credibility of these resources matter to you? Not sure, but it’s something that has made both Doc & I pause. I’m not trying to give you breaking news, since the post in question is (days old) but I haven’t seen any brouhaha over it either.
Speaking for myself & Doc if you’re involved in online marketing, branding, content, SEO, etc. you start having favorites. Right , no surprise there.
But then there’s the question of sharing this content. Which content do you share freely…without checking facts, or cross citations, or God forbid, jumping on Snopes.com. Well as you can imagine, we’ve come to trust various brands to have certain standards. So this is our topic today. When we go to a trusted publication we expect partiality…don’t you? Unless of course you want credibility being called into question.
You will notice during our live session I read the article Title the way Scoop.it had picked it, which we both found out, was a complete redirect and title change. So at the end of the day this would reinforce that what’s happening at Search Engine Land has not been a misfire, but a hole in one.
Transparency. What’s it all about…
Transparency has become a very important signal in the cesspool of social networks. From Applications that rank your social standings by how many votes, likes, RT’s, fans, etc. or maybe getting a guest spot at one of the top journals in our industry.
The post in question is on Search Engine Land, Is Being Found Part Of Your Social Media Strategy?By Sean Carlos.
But the FTC has made it very clear in this .pdf download “The Commission’s goal is to promote meaningful consumer protection and choice in this area as well as to ensure that consumer protections are accessible and understandable to all consumers.”
Should we care?
Why bring it up you ask? Because we’re curious, is this a smart move, would you jeopardize the brand you’ve built of being the news source to go to? Objective, informative, selective, journalism … I guess that would depend on the carrot at the end of that rainbow.
Another article I wanted to share which reinforces our curiosity, Are Bloggers Different from Journalists Where the author Jay Krall states “That’s because audiences for both print and online news expect objectivity. But in an era in which the growth in online advertising revenue is slowing, sponsored posts are becoming an attractive option for many bloggers.”
So as you can see this is not the first time these questions have been asked…last but not least check this out To Disclose or Not Disclose: FTC Disclosure Guidelines for Bloggers
“Disclosure of receiving something from a company that one writes about is simple and in a lot of cases perhaps not even ‘officially’ required, although as a consumer and as a regular reader of blogs, I would hope that anyone (blogger, journalist or otherwise) that gets into an event for free or receives product or a gift and writes about the company would be transparent about it. Transparency contributes to credibility for the writer and assures that consumers (all of us) are protected from potentially false advertising.”