Image by tedmurphy via Flickr
I wasn’t going to weigh in on the IZEA issue, but I couldn’t help myself.
Most of you probably don’t need a back story but for those that do I’ll try and be short.
IZEA is most famous as the company that started PayPerPost. Basically you could pay their bloggers to write about your company. It was not transparent, know one knew that it was a paid post, basically caused a lot of problems.
Since then they’ve learned a lot and changed a lot of their approach. They now operate in complete transparency.
But people still have issues with it. It just doesn’t “feel right” to some people. To others it’s completely legit. They’re both right of course.
Most bloggers are not journalist, but people have come to trust them like they are.
Steve Spalding responded to the criticism he received for his recent participation with IZEA.
Chris Brogan also responded to the backlash he received.
Back in August I wrote a post in response to all the blogger burn out I saw. What I said there directly applies here.
Welcome to the watered-down reality of all that you loved. You can never go back through the door you came in
This may come across as harsh but I’ve dealt with this cycle my whole life. While I am ranting a bit my comments aren’t meant to bash anyone more to offer a friendly kick in the butt.
Anytime a trend that develops on the fringe gets adopted by the mainstream the â€œcool kidsâ€ whine because now every poser has jumped their train.
Congratulations bloggers, you finally got what you’ve been asking for. You can now join the ranks of all the cutting edge musicians, fashionistas and artists.
You really have two options at this point: A)Give up B)Dig in
You can accept the fact that corporate America is hip to the business advantages you’ve been preaching all these years OR you can throw a fit, take your ball blog and go home. With Corporate America comes the late adopters we pride ourselves in not being.
If you stay you can help make sure that the watered down version of what you’ve helped build keeps the core elements that make blogging great.
If you leave you become a what ever happened to?
Over the last year I have come to know IZEA through their infectious CEO, Ted Murphy, he really is a good guy. I’ve also come to know Dan Rua who’s firm invested in IZEA, once again, a really good guy.
IZEA has done a remarkable job of turning around their business despite a really really rough start.
So I like the people, what about the business? It depends. If Ted didn’t do this, someone else would have. Does that make it right? I don’t think it’s right for everyone. I think the approach has to fit the audience and honestly that’s where I think most people really have a problem with it.
It’s just like advertising.
We all know that no matter what the traditional media says, advertising effects their content.
Chris posted the IZEA post on his Dad-O-Matic blog not his social media blog. The Kmart post is probably very appropriate in that case. Some of the bloggers IZEA works with though don’t separate their content and the result can be less than relevant content.
But this is business. And all the rules of business apply here. If you don’t like it don’t follow the person doing it. Vote with your RSS subscription and page views. If you don’t like it blog about it. If you do then do the same.
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