It doesn’t matter.
Ia Lucero’s post on the Perils of Problogging is an interesting read for Performancing.com users, who more or less look to earn money from their blogs. The post has also been picked up by a couple of other blogs, most notably by The Blog Herald.
In the post, Ia raises a lot of points, ranging from bad site monetization choices to blogs being given a bad name by the numerous unoriginal “money mills” out there. My attention was piqued by one line she wrote (emphasis added):
With the abundance of article sites out there, amateur probloggers (what a paradoxical term!) think they can get away with posting unoriginal content, an especially attractive tactic since minimal effort is required.
Hmm, “amateur probloggers”? Does that pertain to Z-listers earning mere Adsense cents a week, or part-time probloggers? Heck, what makes a problogger in the first place?
I don’t really care. If someone blogs and makes money from it, whatever the method or ethics, then he can trumpet to the world that he is a problogger. I’m hoping he doesn’t give the ‘job title’ a bad name by filling his site with content o’ junk and loads of poorly placed ads, but really, that’s out of our control. Why, how many people regard lawyers and salesmen with suspicion? (Not to offend our lawyer and salesmen friends out there.) For every profession, there’s somebody out there who thinks it’s make-believe or a joke. We’ve got to live with that.
I believe the best way to approach the word “problogger” is with guarded recognition, especially during the blogging industry’s formative years. It’s a title that is secondary. Because before you blog, you might be already a freelance writer, journalist, corporate executive, web designer, comic artist, and so on. I guess this is why many people – even those who already earn substantial amounts from their blogs – go “Huh?” when given the word “problogging”. They see blogging as just a supplement to their incomes and an extension of their main jobs. This POV in turn conflicts with full-time bloggers who eat, breathe, and live by their blog earnings.
Now, I’m really interested in hearing your feedback on this one: Do you call yourself a problogger? Do you get weird reactions from friends and relatives when you tell them you are one? And what alternative job titles do you use or suggest your problogging comrades use?
Me: I call myself a problogger; it’s proudly displayed on my tech blog’s sidebar. Yes, I’ve gotten dozens of “Whaa?” faces, especially from those who own only LiveJournals and other diary-type blogs. More recently, when somebody asks me what I do for a living, I simply say, “Writer”. (Many think it’s too generic, but I believe it’s just one of the most elegant titles in the world.) And if the person who asks me looks like a Net user, I chip in, “Website owner” or “Webmaster”.
How about you, guys?