Do You Have a Problem with Live Blogging?

Apparently Some People Do

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Barry Schwartz posted something of a rant at Search Engine Roundtable after an unnamed blogger attacked the site’s live blogging coverage of PubCon:

This guy calls live blogging, "useless" and "inaccurate." He goes on to say what we do is "selfish disregard for reporting integrity." To call live blogging "selfish," oh, that makes me mad. To call the 38+ conferences we’ve flown to, paid hotel costs, sometimes paid conference passes for, "selfish." To call the dumbing, incredibly tiring and exhausting work it is to sit there, session after session, to write down the words that come out of speakers mouths, no matter if you disagree with them or if you find them boring – or, even worse, love what they are saying, but are too consumed in typing down what they are saying to have the time to actually appreciate the words of wisdom – to call that "selfish" (long sentence, sorry, been up for over 24 hours).

Like most forms of media, live blogging has its advantages and disadvantages, and Barry Acknowledges that. While he may have gotten a little more fired up about the criticism of a relatively new-to-the-game blogger than necessary, his rant does bring up a good subject of debate. Is live blogging worth it? Is it worth it to readers? Is it worth it to live bloggers? Is it a legitimate way to report?

It just so happens that Barry included a poll asking readers if Search Engine Roundtable should give up live blogging. The results at this time are as follows:

Give Up Live Blogging?

For the record, I voted no.

People want information, and they want it as soon as possible. Live blogging achieves this. Errors occur, but they do so in other formats as well. And when you’re reading the product of live blogging, you should take this into consideration anyway.

Search Engine Roundtable has been live blogging conferences for years. We were doing it a long time ago too, and we still live blog some stories from time to time, like the recent Google conference call. I don’t recall getting many complaints, and I’m quite sure that many people have enjoyed this kind of coverage over the years. What do you think about live blogging?

Do You Have a Problem with Live Blogging?
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  • Guest

    This is so not a real issue. who gives a sh*t?

    • Chris Crum

      To me, it kind of mirrors those “blogging is dead” posts that have been floating around lately, which I think is kind of BS itself. Apparently Barry Schwartz gives a Sh*t and the rest of the people who participated in the poll.

  • FL.TN.Gal

    Live Blogging? Just wasted time for Cyber Junkies with nothing better to do.

    Voice mails or live audio &/or video chat. Face it, half the stuff on blogs is useless for anyone other than the one trying to gain attention or some semblance of being a celebrity.


  • http://www.immo-buitenland.net/ Immo Buitenland

    Everyone is talking about the "conversation" but if they’re not listening, then it’s not two-way. The "live" blogging cracks me up…it really epitomizes "Blahhhging"

  • kaare (corey) hostland

    hi guys,  i appreciate your science as it makes for progress,  but please do not forget. these promotions come to the public from all sides and we can not play catch up with all of it ,   even if we need it.  so we end up dismising the vast majority of them such as live blog,  yes,  what is that , is a promotion for something and like so many other promotions the sender ought to always include a consice and clear description of what they are.  it used to be called politenes.  so to make that a bit more clear.  not including the description is like talking from "the top of one’s head" and expect that any new listener would know what the subject is hopefuly through osmosis.  what goes on is that the information is sent to new potential customers that are just begining to hear about it.  so lets act as a team please.  i think we will benefit more that way.

    kaare (corey) hostland

  • http://www.monkeezemarketing.blogspot.com Marvin

    It’s kind of a curious question in many respects – obviously for some live blogging would be a useful way to get information and for others, not so much.  Just because we have technology that allows live blogging is no indication that it something that should be done. 

    If live blogging offers value to readers which can’t be better acheived by some other method of communication then it seems useful to carry on doing it.  If however it is only a technological novelty, it will be crushed by the weight of it’s own uselessness and go away.

  • http://www.commissionblueprint3.tk Sam

    Live Blogging is a great way to disseminate information.  People are always looking for the most up to date information on the web.

  • http://www.bradstinyworld.com Brad Hart @ A DoFollow Blog

    The people who complain about live blogging are usually the ones too stupid or lazy to do it themselves or simply have a vested interest in live bloggers not getting any attention.  My wife and I both live blog a lot of televised events from awards shows to sporting events to political speeches and with decent SEO measures in place it does bring instant traffic along with all the benefits of being top ranked on google, google blog search and at times google trends. 

    Live blogging can be a profitable endeavour.  My best day ever was last seasons Idol gives back.  I posted every commercial break and sometimes more often than that.  I grew from 50 page specific visitors on the first break to more than a 1000 per break by the end of the show.  I am sure people who waited until it was over to spout their little two hundred word complaint were unhappy with my 15 page keyword filled post which to this day still brings in a hundred plus visitors a month from google.

    As for those who would say we are just trying to be celebrities, "Well DUH!" Every blogger no matter what they blog is on or how fresh their material is wants to be a celeb.  That is the nature of the game. Even the losers who complain about us trying to garner all the attention are themselves trying to be celebs, they want to be famous for being haters.  If you find the information useless or go away and read someone else, no one is forcing you to read my soapbox forum.

    Lastly, I must ask what is more useless; people giving their instant opinion on a subject with no chance to change what they thought at a particular moment in time or hate filled complaints about people with the audacity to give their thoughts and opinions?


  • http://www.japaneconomynews.com/ Ken

    The comments of one guy I’ve never heard of are not going to have any impact on me. Live Blogging can be great, and can produce a different sort of result. I honestly don’t care what some guy  no one has ever heard of thinks.

  • http://www.linnetwoods.com Linnet Woods

    Why do people who don’t want something so often feel obliged to rubbish it? It reminds me of hearing Maurice Boland on REM FM radio telling some crotchety old bat, who rang up to complain about some program or other, to inspect her radio carefully and locate the mechanism that would permit her to switch to another radio station or turn the radio off altogether… He was so right!

    If nobody ever accesses what you are doing after the initial flurry of visitors, perhaps it isn’t worth continuing unless you are OK with speaking into a vacuum but, if your stats tell you that people are returning, any people at all, it doesn’t have to be millions, then why shouldn’t you be able to go on doing it without those who have nothing better to do with their time trying to direct your activities?

    To such people I would say "Get a life!"


  • http://www.securitycerts.org Security Certifications

    I speak a lot, and having a live blogger up front can be disruptive. That said, usually it’s a non-issue.

    As for reading peeple live blogging? Little interest myself. And I’d never do it if the talk was 1/2 worth listening too

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  • http://antonfkip.blogspot.com Antonfkip

    That’s great article,,thankz for u info

  • http://www.masenka.be Masenka

    Get the information from live events straight onto the web must have some benefit in that there is more information available instantly instead of it being stuck in a broadcast or an interpretation of a reporter.

  • http://www.paradoxofreality.com Reeta Luthra

    It’s something that is already going on in other mediums.  You get live commentators on tv and breaking news stories etc, so why not live blogging? The attraction/enjoyment of the blog comes from the skill of the blogger and the relevance of the subject to the reader. Some live bloggers are pretty good at what they do.

    This weekend I experienced the live tweeting of events on twitter. @marismith is a regular live tweeter and does a very good job of conveying both the message and the atmosphere in bite sizes of 140 chars. 

    It’s not something I would be interested in doing myself but I thank those who do.




  • Don

    Just pulled this issue of WPN out of my spam folder to hear what Bruce Clay had to say.

    So I took a few minutes out of my busy day to read the entire issue. Most issues never get clicked on in my Spam folder.

    Now I scrolled down and say this headline that captured my attention. Live bloggers?


    Does anyone ever read anything from a live blogger? We don’t need the information that quick. I’d take a guess and say that anyone who is waiting on hands and needles for a post from a live blogger has too much time on their hands.

    Yeah, I’m sure some people hop from Social Media site to another seeing what has been posted since the last tiem they checked 5 minutes ago. But reality says that most people have way too much to do to sit and wait for some live blogger to post an article.

    It makes no difference whether the post is added immediately after a session or 8 hours from the end of the session.

    People who sit and wait on a post from a live blogger need something to do.


  • http://flyrodstripedbass.com fly fishing for stripers

    People messing with their laptops, phones, PDAs etc is potentially disruptive, whether they are live blogging or not

  • http://www.abouthomeimprovement.com Jeff @ Home Remodeling

    I don

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    If it’s done respectfully it’s very cool. But sometimes it can be disruptive

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