Both John Marshall’s keynote speech and the article about successful bloggers, highlighted the importance of having a supportive audience. Support for monetary reasons, as well as for content are main reasons why some blogs are more successful than others. If blogs don’t have readers, it is difficult for them to make money, and there existence is no longer guaranteed. Oftentimes when readers are so involved in a blog, they became more invested and readership will only increase.
Talking Points Memo received support from its audience in multiple ways, which created audience interaction. Marshall received monetary support, which allowed him to expand the journalism he was producing and actually hire full-time staff. Without that reader support, there is no guarantee the blog would have reached the success it has. His audience also interacted with him by giving him information about stories and sending in tips. As an independent blogger, he didn’t have the resources to travel and interview people throughout the country, but his readers were throughout the country and able to give him information. His readers were a direct reason why he was able to uncover the stories he did.
I thought he made an interesting point in his speech about independent media uncovering the story and reporting it, but then losing it to the mainstream media when the story gains popularity. This just shows that independent media is covering stories they should be covering and doing the work mainstream media isn’t. Even though it would be more ideal if independent bloggers could carry the story through, it is still important that the stories are getting told.
While I Can Has Cheezburger is not a journalistic website, it still portrays the same importance of audience support and contribution. If readers did not send in their own content, the website would not be what it is today. It greatly contributed to its success. The list of bloggers in the rest of the article, show that a simple niche blog idea can reach great success, which then leads to monetary success. Even though not all blogs are going to reach the success to become full-time jobs, they do show that blogs have a place in the media world and should be taken seriously. When ad spots are going for thousands of dollars, they are clearly doing something right.