That Euroblog discussion from the perspective of a lobbyist
As always, I am a bit late at reacting to a discussion (well actually, i usually stay out of discussions in the blogging world ’cause that’s what I do as a living), but it has been a fascinating thing to look at two parallel and complementary discussions in the Euroblogosphere this week: on the one hand, the epidermic reaction by eurobloggers to the ivory tower report by Waggener Edstrom ranking the influence of euroblogs in what was quickly referred to as #bbs10 (depending who you ask, this refers to the acronym of the title of the study “Brussels Blogger Study 2010″ or “Brussels Bull S***”) in some lively Twitter exchanges and blog posts (by Jon Worth, Blogactiv, Mathew Lowry, Open Europe, The European Citizen, Bit More Complicated, Lacomeuropeenne (FR), and Ralf Grahn for the ultimate summary); on the other, the discussions initiated by the French blogger @samuelbhfaure regarding the need for a new/better collective European blog, and which is neatly summarized by @europasionaria here.
All of this lead also to the nomination of the top 30 Euroblogs by the team of editors at Bloggingportal, with your not very humble servant’s own blog being included in the list.
OK: so now I’ve summarized it all, what is my point you will think? My point is that I am not even sure what a “euroblog” is, and am slightly worried at the idea of “organising” and “specialising” things…dear I say it: “professionalising” it?
I blog as a cheap means of therapy. I don’t have time for a shrink, I am too polite too shout my frustration or worries in front of my kids, so WordPress and my PC are my two sanity vents when used in combination. I write in a not very professional way, with as little research as possible, and with no intention to influence anyone, because that is what I do as my day job and it’s the last thing I want to do when I write. I write to get things off my chest. And I self-censor myself by not writing about the dossiers I handle and the subject matters I deal with professionally just because my blog is not a lobbying tool to me. Except if you consider that a lobbyist writing about lobbying is actually lobbying for lobbyists (I know: I had a headache too when re-reading this).
Ranking blogs, discussing influence…why not…if it creates a buzz, that’s fine. But should we truly care about the “influence” of euroblogs? Is the whole purpose not to create an image of EU stuff that removes a bit of the dust and shows it can be fun, interesting, important, a source of a job, etc? Or is that influence and is my definition of that concept too tied to my professional perspective where influence = power = uses and abuses = egoland? Bloggingportal provocatively titled its post “My Euroblog is Better Than Yours“…hmmm: mine is bigger than yours? Let’s hope the Euroblog does not become the Egoblog cause then I will have to find a new place to do my therapy