Are Bloggers Selling Out?
Billmon of Whiskey Bar has an op-ed in today's LA Times, Blogging Sells, and Sells Out. He argues that blogads and their financial gain to bloggers will result in them being controlled and co-opted by the same mainstream media from which they pride themselves on being different. As the money and media attention goes to a handful of top bloggers, the rest will get lost in the shuffle:
Even as it collectively achieves celebrity status for its anti-establishment views, blogging is already being domesticated by its success. What began as a spontaneous eruption of populist creativity is on the verge of being absorbed by the media-industrial complex it claims to despise.
In the process, a charmed circle of bloggers — those glib enough and ideologically safe enough to fit within the conventional media punditocracy — is gaining larger audiences and greater influence. But the passion and energy that made blogging such a potent alternative to the corporate-owned media are in danger of being lost, or driven back to the outer fringes of the Internet.
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