I have been reading some (not all) of the whole CAMRA vs the bloggers thing, which just seems slightly bizarre although I can see where both sides are coming from.
However what I'm thinking is that some folks don't realise just how important blogging or bloggers opinions are worth. I'm going to say that the beauty industry also is only just now figuring out that women actually take more notice of another women's opinion from her blog about an product than what an article in a magazine. I read both perfume and beauty blogs, I know that blogger's general likes and dislikes and so if they review a product I'm interested in, their opinion can (and usually does) influence whether I buy something or not. For years beauty bloggers were sidelined until a few newer companies suddenly realised the reason for their growth was the bloggers yelling about brillant products they have found. Now companies do launch to independent bloggers knowing this is a good way of getting word out there.
Same with beer bloggers, if I see a blog I know and enjoy reading mentioning an event or beer as really good then I will be influenced by that. The point is I know from reading that blog that we roughly like similar things so the chances are I will also enjoy the event/beer. So confident I will be that I have regularly brought six bottles of beer I haven't tried before thanks to someone's post, so far this tactic works well. I have had interesting beer I may not have tried and been to pubs/events that I have thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Blogging is a powerful and free tool, yes some do get freebies but good bloggers will say that they got it free in their review. No hidden agenda as if you read something regularly you spot those quickly and can judge your reaction to their posts accordingly. Blogs by companies and their links are good to follow for news and offers but an individual's view freely given is a godsend to many new companies or services.
What are you thoughts on the power of blogs? Do you see them as powerful or not?