Muppet Flack

The post title is meant to be a double entendre. What I’m considering posting will either make me a PR Flack for Buena Vista and/or will get me flack from the blogging community.

Here goes.

Earlier this evening, a woman by the name of Caitlin who works at the Marketing firm M80, sent me this delightful email:

Hi Seth,

I just found your blog: http://www.mostlymuppet.com/ and I think you may be of some help to me. I’m reaching out to you on behalf of M80 & Buena Vista Home Entertainment regarding The Muppet Show Season One. Would you be interested in posting the press release and/or a banner on your blog? You seem like a reputable influencer, and I love your blog…so I think you’d be a big help to us.

Please let me know if you’re interested!

Thanks!
Cait

While I’m flattered that I’m a “reputable influencer”, giving away my content to the marketing firm of Buena Vista Home Video seems, I don’t know, WRONG. Having never been pitched a blog story by an interested party, their PR department or a Marketing firm I wonder if my experience is typical or not.

Either way, I’m responding to Cait with the following email. I’ll post the Press Release she mentions, but not the banner, under the terms I outline below.

Cait,

Thanks for your kind words regarding my blog, Mostly Muppet Dot Com. The blog, and the URL/Title, are kind of a goof and honestly don’t have much to do with the Muppet Show, other than the fact that I enjoyed the show growing up.

I’m not like some other strictly Muppet/Henson blogs whose sole topic is The Muppet Show or Fraggle Rock; I blog about a wide range of topics including online marketing.

You see, in my day job, I work in the Marketing department for a large cable network in Atlanta, GA. I’m a producer for their website and I’m not unfamiliar with “viral” marketing.

Given this understanding, I’d still like to be a “big help” to you. But, I have a few quid pro quo items before we proceed:

  1. I’d like to receive a copy of the DVD you mention, The Muppet Show Season One. If I’m going to help you promote this product, I’d logically want a copy to review. I can return it after viewing, if you’d like.
  2. I’d only provide the press release. As you can see from visiting my site, I do accept advertising via Google Adsense and, soon, BlogAds, so giving away my valuable ad-space for free isn’t really a part of my “business plan” as it exists.
  3. I’m going to blog every communication, in it’s entirety, that I have with M80, Buena Vista Home Video and any/all of its subsidiaries. If people are going to continue to trust my blog – which is really an online extension of me – I have to be completely open and transparent about my influences. To do otherwise would be a betrayal of my audience, my ideals and the ethos of blogging and bloggers everywhere

If m80 and Buena Vista Home Video are amenable to these conditions, I’d be more than happy to post about The Muppet Show Season One on DVD. As a matter of fact, I’ve already blogged it twice [one] [two].

You can find a complete transcript of this email, and yours, on my blog at: http://www.mostlymuppet.com/archives/2005/08/29/muppet-flack/

I look forward to speaking with you soon.

Seth Miller
www.mostlymuppet.com

So, what do you think? Should I post the Press Release? Do you think they’ll still want to deal with me given my response? Do you think they’ll comply with my demands?

I’m eager to know what other bloggers, specifically those that are pitched these kinds of ideas, think about the situation. And my 2 loyal readers, what do you think? Would it cheapen me to post the Press Release, given my conditions?

Comment away!

2 thoughts on “Muppet Flack

  1. Jen W. says:

    Interesting dilemma, but I think you’re handling in a good, transparent way this is becoming rare on the web as more blogs become a “business” with well measured words and less a form of free expression. This transparency makes blogging valuable to citizens who seek the truth after being bombarded with the measured words of mass media day after day. Good for you!
    You are right to assume that lack of transparency would make you look like a corporate puppet (ha!). But since you provide full-disclosure, there is nothing wrong with taking the time to provide an unbiased review a product of interest to you, and you must obviously have a copy of the product in question in order to accurately review it. And hey, while your at it, post the press release as a reference so the rest of us will know when the product hits the streets.

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