Bloggers as Journalists, Redux

I know there are plenty of unresolved issues about whether bloggers are journalists. Where ever you come out on that question, consider the following. I’ve been receiving a noticeable increase in personalized spam in the form of press releases and other marketing announcements. Last week, I even got a call from a PR agency asking if I had received a book they had sent for my review (I hadn’t; they are sending another copy).

Clearly, the PR agencies view bloggers as potential influencers, just like other forms of media. Perhaps this just another manifestation of the latest fad called “buzz marketing.”

Ironically, my blogs are pretty mom-and-pop as blogs go. As far as I know, I don’t crack the top 1,000 blogs on any blog ranking list (and, probably, more accurately, I don’t crack the top 10,000). So if the PR people are calling me, they must view blog exposure as valuable enough to chase down comparatively low-traffic/low-market-share blogs.

I’ve also noticed that the PR contacts/press releases have been pretty tightly focused on marketing issues. This isn’t to say that they have been interesting, but the relevance is significantly higher than the average spam I get.