Yes folks, last night was our blogger meet up at Jacksons bar and bistro in Hillsboro Village. I would go so far as to say it was a complete success. The folks at Jacksons were there usual cordial selves, and the patio was a great location for us to schmooze and mingle. Thankfully, everyone paid their tabs and took care of the servers so in the end everyone was happy. I had the pleasure of meeting a few different Nashville Bloggers I hadn't met before, and some I had already. I think everyone will agree that it was quite enjoyable to watch Mr Roboto do his best to try and show his independence from his new masters at News Channel 2. That's News Channel 2, WKRN. Hook, line and sinker they got that poor boy. Such a shame. He went from the true Nashville Nightlife crunkmaster to News Channel 2 mama's boy in just a few days. Dude, when you have a picture of "Brad About You" on your blog header, you are crunk no longer. Just the way it is Roboto, sorry man. One day I hope to see Carl from Aqua Teen Hunger Force back on the header, and more shots of you stumbling around in your Western wear. Still, thanks for getting everyone together, I had a good time chatting up a storm with everyone.
I did discuss an issue close to many bloggers hearts with Allen Forkum, of Cox and Forkum fame at the bar after the festivities on the patio died down, and that is one of Blog Sponsorship and Blogs generating revenue in general.
Here at Tman in Tennessee, I have some ads listed to your right for things you can buy. One for Cox and Forkums excellent political cartoons, Black and White World I and II, the other for Steven Grahams Eat What You Want and Die Like A Man cookbook. I list them both not because they pay me to, but because I think both of them are great reads and worth your time and money. I make absolutely nothing off of any link associated with my blog. I don't pay anything to publish it either. I also link to good causes I believe in such as Blog Iran or Support Our Troops, because again, I believe in these causes and anything I can do to help, even in a small way, is something I should do. Do I feel as though I should be commended for this? Of course not. It's not costing me anything. In fact, it's probably about the least I can do. Bottom line, I make zero dollars from any listing on my site whatsoever.
One reason I choose to skip the blogads is the fact that on occasion I post to my blog from work. My company could accuse me of using company internet connections to make money for a private business and could then fire me or reprimand me. Another is I just don't like being beholden to marketing interests. I'm not saying that those folks who do make money off of their blogs through advertising are dishonest or money grubbers, in fact I hope bloggers do become successful advertisers. It will only increase the level of influence and coverage that the blogosphere commands. It is entirely a personal decision, and I do not mean to judge any blog that does generate income through ads. That's the beauty of the web, "it's your thing- do whatya wanna dooooo.."
On the same note, this McCain-Fiengold crap has just about gone off the deep end. From yesterdays Wall Street Journal Editorial page-
When it comes to the law of unintended consequences, the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance "reform" is rapidly becoming a legal phenomenon. The latest example comes courtesy of the Federal Election Commission, where officials are being asked to extend the law to the very people it is supposed to empower: individual citizens.
We'd like to say we're surprised, but this was always going to be the end result of a law that naively believed it could ban money from politics. Since 2003, when the Supreme Court upheld it, McCain-Feingold has failed spectacularly in its stated goal of reining in fat-cat donors. Yet its uncompromising language has helped to gag practically every other politically active entity -- from advocacy groups to labor unions. Now the FEC is being asked to censor another segment of society, the millions of individuals who engage in political activity online.
Ridiculous. In fact as the journal notes-
An idea kicking around the FEC a few years ago would require government to calculate the percentage of individuals' electricity bills that went toward political advocacy (we aren't joking).
The WSJ backs up blogs. Until they don't. I still get the feeling the WSJ hasn't quite understood the whole point behind blogs, which they highlight with this next quote-
Another alternative would be to classify all bloggers as journalists, seeing as how the press is about the only entity exempt from McCain-Feingold. As much we enjoy our profession, we think a nation of journalists is overkill.
Translation: We don't want any competition. Coming from the WSJ, of which I am usually a big fan, this statement truly irks me. How can a Newspaper simultaneously pine for free markets and healthy competition yet shun away the first instance of anyone trying to compete with them for viewing audiences? It smacks of a very unhealthy double standard. Regardless, the only way the guvmint will ban me from supporting a candidate for election through my blog is OVER MY COLD DEAD BODY. I will not be beholden to either corporate nor political interests.
And, as usual, my synergy with the guys from Cox and Forkum never fails as they nail it one the head yet again...