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I am relatively new to social media (08/08). Therefore, I am no expert in the industry, just a regular user of the social media tools.

Speaking as a regular user, I didn't have a problem with the KMart sponsored post. I saw the backlash. I read through everyone's comments all over the net and Twitter, but I wasn't offended. Seriously, $500 isn't that much money, certainly not enough to buy the integrity of a well-known and consistent blogger.

All over the web you'll see the demand for big brands to participate in social media, and they have to start somewhere. Using bloggers we trust is a fair place to begin. Let's face it, there have been and will continue to be worse attempts made by big brands to secure social media ground. As long as the bloggers post the association/relationship I am not offended by sponsorship.

@Alan, agree with all your points. Anyone holding this up as a shining example of innovative thinking needs to switch careers. At best, it’s Pavlovian: Wave cash at anyone and they’ll jump.

@Carri - The usual ‘Any PR is good PR’ mantra sounds like the ends justify the means. Genuine debate hasn’t been part of this. From all the comments I read, anyone who disagreed or who raised fair questions of participating bloggers’ are dismissed as trolls and living in the past.

Hi. Thank you all for the comments

@Brian: It constantly surprises me how what I see as just plain common sense seems to swim against the current in the marketing/social media world. You sum up my position nicely.

@Amber: Thanks for persevering and commenting (there were some technical difficulties) - I try and maintain a pretty level-headed notion of what marketing can and can't do. The company has to put out a good product in order for the marketing to work, especially these days.

@Liz: I think it's okay for brands to sponsor things so long as they don't bother with the editorial content. The issue with TV was that it cost money to put on a show-- you had to pay the actors, the prop people, the camera crew, the lighting techs-- it was expensive and the audience go that Texaco or whomever was underwriting the cost of the show. Blogs don't have that issue, so it's a different ballgame. However, if someone wanted to say, sponsor me, so I could do nothing but write the blog, I'd be all over that.

@Carri. I find I do that too - realize after I posted that I used the wrong their/there/they're. Not sure why- it may just be that typing online makes us sloppier.


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