Here are two Quotes to chew on:
1. "Blogs are the latest forum for people who have nothing to say that others actually care about," states Wharton marketing professor Xavier Dreze. The mode of a distribution, explains Dreze, "is its highest point. What this means is that there are more blogs with 0 subscriptions than blogs with one subscription or two or three or four. There is a reason why the modal number of subscriptions to a blog is 0."
"I don't see the point. It's a bunch of people writing their opinions, and those people have no credibility. The information content is very low." Established media outlets, such as newspapers and magazines, have standards and fact checkers to help guarantee accuracy, he notes, but "anybody can print a blog and say, 'Hey, I'm an expert. Let me tell you about this."
~To Blog or Not to Blog: Report from the Front (I recommend reading the entire study)
2. "Blogs are getting embraced because they are real (at least the good ones are). Often times, the authors of industry blogs are active practitioners and blog out of passion for what they do. Blogs are gradually establishing credibility one post at a time. These days, it’s almost as common for someone to reference a blog source as it is an established resource such as Forrester."
~Me, from Blog's Eye View presentation
Notice anything about the two excerpts? They fundamentally contradict each other at the core. Now to be fair, the report also included Wharton academics who actively include blogs in their lifestyle.
But here is where it gets interesting. Know what the good professor Xavier's title is?
Assistant Professor of Marketing
He's a professor of Marketing in one of the worlds most respected Business Schools and he does not see the value of blogs. I have to wonder—what blogs has he been reading? Am I supposed to take his word as an academic when there are successful marketing professionals out there with informative blogs such as Eric Kintz from HP, Steve Rubel from Edelman, David Churbuck from Lenevo and Pete Blackshaw from Nielson Buzz Metrics? Am I supposed to believe someone from the lecture room vs. someone from the board room—and who even says value needs to come from either?
Xavier is certainly entitled to his opinion. And there is of course a lot of trash out there in general—not limited to blogs. But I have to say, this reinforces the stereotype that places of academia can become insulated. Get out there people! Go out in the real world and see things from different perspectives. Lots of professionals are out there blogging. People who PRACTICE what they do for a living. If we can't learn from them—who can we learn from?