22 December 2004

Shmooze and swag

Derrick Schneider, one of my favorite online food writers, wrestles with shmooze and swag: Blogs need to address this topic more and more. A number of companies have started schmoozing food and wine bloggers in the hopes that we'll promote their products. I've gotten press releases, offers of samples from wineries, notes from publicists about movies, and even an offer from a publisher to help me design a contest so I could give free copies of books to you... I have a label in gmail called "Rent this blog!" for all these. I'm glad to see that marketers view us as influential, but I think our greatest strength is strong, independent opinions. Pick up just about any mainstream food mag if you want to read text that's shaped by advertisers and devoid of personality.