We’re at an advantage right? Every business in the country is looking to build a social media presence and even dishwasher detergents now have a group on Facebook. The number of Followers you have is now a currency and employers are scrambling to recruit professional and accomplished community managers. Social media even has a week named after it!
The Lebanese blogosphere has a reputation that precedes it. Namely a good one. We’ve had our fair share of media coverage and we’ve managed to really make a name for ourselves- some more than others. We’re tight-knit circle that makes up the Who’s Who in our sphere and we often rally around the same cause, retweet it, share it and link it.
Brands are constantly referring to us for our humble advice, PR reps are flooding our inboxes with invitations to promotional events and all they want in return is some publicity, ANY publicity!
We’ve become influential in our context. We’ll eat at your joint and blog about it the next day. If it was a bad experience, we won’t hold back, and it’s only right, if our readership wanted a paid review, they’d buy a magazine.
At times, our words have created accountability, forcing businesses to not only acknowledge consumer feedback but to also cater to it.
Here’s the downside. We’ve also been known to get nasty- seldom with each other, mostly with online brands. There have been a couple of incidents where we’ve managed to take the criticism from constructive to destructive. Sure businesses are really putting themselves out there when they go online- but does that mean that it’s all fair game? I think so. But many feel that we may be thinly treading the “D” word. Defamation. I’m not referring to any one incident in particular here (I’m notorious for my own online rants), but here’s the thing: has our viral “expertise” allowed us to become more quick to judge and merciless when things just don’t go our way or when we feel a business is conducting itself in the “wrong” way? Rather than speaking to them directly, we resort to naming and shaming, but again, isn’t that the entire point of blogging in the first place? What do you think?