Monday, October 16, 2006
Three Quick Blogging Lessons from Wal-Mart Mess
There are three major lessons to be learned from the Wal-Marting Across America “fake” blog scandal that is summed up nicely in this Business Week article.
Lesson One: Put Business Week’s online news URL on your favorites list or, better yet, subscribe to its RSS feed. The publication rarely misses a business web trick.
Lesson Two: Honesty still matters. Maybe a fake blog doesn’t rank up there with backdated stock options, but it stinks nonetheless. The Fourth Estate is a lot bigger now, with millions of bloggers assuming the role of watchdog. Lie on the web – and lying includes sins of omission -- and you’ll probably get caught.
Lesson Three: Wal-marting Across America was a nice idea that could have worked well if the traveling bloggers – Laura and Jim – had disclosed that the trip was being sponsored by the Wal-Mart PR firm. (See Laura’s mea culpa here.) The fact is, a creative blog that says positive things about a company can be accepted if it is transparent and entertaining/informative.