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Blogging for Business?

Nicolas Lemann, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University wrote in the last issue of the new Yorker that blogs, useful and often times fun as they may be, have not yet risen “to the level of a journalistic culture rich enough to compete in a serious way with the old media–to function as a replacement rather than as an addendum.”

Nicolas Lemann, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University wrote in the last issue of the new Yorker that blogs, useful and often times fun as they may be, have not yet risen “to the level of a journalistic culture rich enough to compete in a serious way with the old media–to function as a replacement rather than as an addendum.”

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Whether blogs are merely personal journals or real journalism is perhaps best left for a different board, one aspect of blogs is definitely of interest to Fast Company readers: business. To what extent do blogs and business mix?

In my own corner of the blogosphere, wine and food, the line has been blurring. Wineries are in many cases ensnarled by laws that prevent them from selling directly to consumers (although this is changing after a Supreme Court ruling last year) and have been either confused or reluctant to embrace the internet.

One good use of a blog for business is Pinotblogger from the new Capozzi winery in Sonoma’s Russian River Valley. The winery has not yet produced one bottle of pinot noir but already has some renown in the blogosphere thanks to Josh Hermsmyer, the winery’s self-proclaimed “generalissimo,” who is “blogging the birth” of the winery. He recently put up four finalists for labels and readers could vote for their favorite.

One blog whose motivations seem more forced than a dual compressor is a new blog for Sub Zero, maker of wine fridges and more. The new blog has enlisted some big names in wine journalism to write entries and ads for the new blog on several other web sites. But is Anthony Dias-Blue writing a post entitled “the Big Chill” about storing wine in his Sub-Zero wine fridge anything other than an advertorial? It leaves a taste in my mouth worse than Mateus.

Dr. Vino