Are bloggers influencers, journalists or both? Does it matter?

Bloggers are gaining power all over the world; they have created their own communities and are excelling in different social media and networking media channels that in turn allow them to reach more and more people. This gain of status made bloggers a target for PR people to help promote different products/services/ideas.

Cartoon: If superman would blog. Thanks to @Boris.

Cartoon: If superman would blog. Thanks to @Boris.

A recent survey by PR agency Text 100  claimed that the majority of bloggers prefer to be treated as influencers rather than as journalists. While I don’t see the contradiction here – one doesn’t negate the other – I do understand why bloggers favor the influencing label. It implies power and spare them the hectic and liability that comes for being a journalist. But, I can also see why journalists as well aspire to becoming influencers. It is a privilege to be able to affect people in a way or another.

But who is really a blogger and who is a journalist? More journalists are having blogs of their own, and more bloggers – through their blogs – end up working as journalists for established newspapers/magazines. There are also people like Danny Sullivan, who is a self identified journalist who uses his blog as his publishing platform. Is it about publishing platforms? or about the way of writing and level of credibility?

We all know that journalism is a tough job. It is about trying to get it right every single time. There is a level of liability that defines being a journalist which is much higher than the one set for an average blogger. After all, a journalist usually represents, besides himself, an entire organization which has a unique image, policy and character to uphold!

Dear Top Influencers: Don’t Recycle, Innovate!

Are the boundaries of innovation and creativity really restricted? Or are top influencers simply becoming lazy and redundant because recycling ideas is much easier than giving birth to new original ones?

Please don’t get me wrong, I do appreciate and benefit from the writings and ramblings of big names in the industry such as Kevin Rose, Seth Godin and Chris Brogan. I honestly do! But, are they REALLY the right people to follow? And tell me something: when was their last NEW idea?

As a part of my job description and my daily researching routine, I browse and surf around 30-40 websites minimum per day. Every day, I come across creative, funny, interesting, boring, dull and most annoyingly, redundant ideas. From there on, and after reading a few articles about the importance of “key influencers” in the success of new business startups or the promotion of innovative web applications and so on, I got curious: What do these influencers really know that we already don’t know? How creative are they? What do they add to our table of knowledge?

As I surfed the infamous website of one of the key influencers available online,, I noticed something quite interesting: Chris Brogan recycles ideas! Take this for an example: In one article, Chris talks about social media in relation to company use by using the term “life raft“. Then he talks about it in another twist, also corporate wise, using a different term but more or less the same idea. Later on, and in another post, our creative Chris writes an article entitled Social Media within Companies, which tackles more or less the same subject as the latter two! Finally, he writes an article to sum up all the ideas he has previously addressed!

And it doesn’t end there!

The redundancy of Seth Godin’s content is another example! In one of his articles, dated August 2008, that are related to profile pictures and their impact, he wrote about the impact of your profile picture, then, in a followng article, he addressed the impact of the logo picture on a company’s image and finally in April 2009, he wrote about what impression does your tiny profile picture has on your viewers, and gave us a list of best practices.

To make my point clearer, think about this: Why is there no “tag cloud” on Seth Godin’s blog? Why does our beloved Chris use a general one on his site? Are they using this technique to cover up their lack of innovative performance?

I think now you are able to see the big picture!

Have top influencers reached the dead end of their innovation? Did their creative juices run out? Do we give up now and surrender to the redundancy of what’s available because we are turning into blind followers?

Seth, Chris: I hope you do reputation management so I can see your replies on this post down here :)

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