[Editor's Note: Due to scheduling conflicts last night, we couldn't stay longer than the reception for last night's event, but freelance copyeditor Andrew Graham did and sent us the report below on what was discussed about the inner workings of NYC's blogosphere.]
During Mashable’s and the 92YTribeca's “State of the New York Blogosphere” panel last night, c | net reporter/blogger Caroline McCarthy described how she met her neighbor, then a complete stranger: by putting a photo of the neighbor’s hula-hoop on short-form blogging platform Tumblr, and, later, seeing the photo re-blogged by that neighbor.
“I’m a recluse … and this is how we meet our neighbors today.”
If there was a common thread throughout, it was that blogging is becoming more accepted at legitimate journalism, except for when it comes to getting paid for it. And a lot of the make-them-up-as-you-go rules of the blogosphere are being set in New York.
All five of the panelists brought different backgrounds, and thus different perspectives on the state of blogging in New York.
Perhaps the most noteworthy piece of information came from Bryan Keefer, the director of product for The Daily Beast, when he answered a question from the audience on the potential for companies to use blogs to publish content about themselves. Keefer didn’t sound optimistic: “Audiences respond to authenticity … that’s Marketing 101.”
Gizmodo Associate Editor Matt Buchanan said, “The notion of community does not make something a New York blog,” perhaps referring to the editorial changes at Gawker that enable it to cover more political and technology news from a national perspective.
Digg McCarthy said, still isn’t turning a profit, even though many blogs count on it to generate a good percentage of their traffic. So, any major change to that one web property could have a dangerous ripple effect across many online outlets.
Alana Taylor, a contributing writer for Mashable and duel journalism/history major at New York University, gave advice to young bloggers: Don’t feel as though you need to use every platform that’s out there, and you can use blogging as a way to bypass the dull college internships that usually precede a career in most fields.
Taylor also highlighted the importance of face-to-face contact with other bloggers. “Go to meet-ups; go to lunches; go to everything you can.” If there’s one city that these insidery events happen frequently in, it’s New York.
BusinessInsider.com Senior Editor Nick Carlson gave advice to public relations reps who target bloggers with story ideas. Send short e-mails instead of news releases, and lose clients’ canned quotes—“They’re boring,” Carlson said.
He also advised bloggers to carry around a FlipVid, a small, point-and-shoot camcorder, and “stick it in peoples’ faces” during events. (Ironic, yesterday’s event didn’t allow video or photography.)
Before the panel started, a few hundred audience members mingled inside the 92YTribeca. I huddled around a table with Squarespace’s Mike Caprio, AMP3PR Co-Founder Alyson Campbell, and pharmaceutical researcher Amanda Keylor, who said she wasn’t there for professional reasons but just wanted to hear what the panelists had to say.
Nearby, communications consultant and blogger Josh Sternberg chatted with Mashable’s Sharon Feder and writer Lon Cohen. I also said quick hellos to Abrams Research’s Rachel Sklar, and Lilit Marcus, the brains behind Save The Assistants.