Ghost Blogging – Will It Stay?
Ghost blogging can be a pretty delicate issue, depending on what you ask. In this practice, a professional writer creates blog posts that another person (usually a high-ranking member of a company) will claim to have written by placing his or her name on the byline. This practice is common among online businesses, where top-level managers want to display their industry knowledge through blogging but do not have the time or writing chops to do so. Whether or not this practice is ethical has been widely discussed in the past and questions about its validity continue to float around today. But is it really allowable? Has it been accepted or has it finally died? The answers may not be absolute, but here are some points to mull over.
The major problem cited with ghost blogging is the inauthenticity that comes with it. Because the blog posts are technically not written by the person who claims to write it, many perceive this practice as nothing but pretension. For one, the "blogger" who is supposedly writing the posts makes the audience believe that he or she has produced the content, while this is not exactly true. This, according to critics, is deception. Another criticism against this practice is the assumed lack of expertise of ghost bloggers. While professional writers are known to be avid researchers who learn the subject before they write about it, some still maintain that ghost blogs are less-than-qualified when it comes to credibility.
Counter Point: It's Marketing
Addressing the issue that ghost blogging is deceiving, blogging pundits argument that this practice is no different than any marketing strategy. It aims to provide businesses (and in many cases, businessmen) an impressive image that can positively affect the outlook and consequent consumer behavior of their target audience. In this way, ghost blogging is similar to any kind of outsourced marketing service, be it social media maintenance, content writing, or copywriting. Any form of paid content for business purposes is justifiable by its ultimate intent.
Criticism: Audiences Do Not Like It
In connection to the argument that ghost blogs are inauthentic, critics also say that posts and contents created by ghost writers do not sell with the audience. This is yet another point being raised on the proposed demise of ghost writing for blogs. Because ghost blogs have a phony air on them, audiences are not encouraged to read such content nor to rely on them for information.
Counter Point: They Do Not Mind
One possible reason why ghost blogging will stay is because readers are very aware that the practice is even going on. For professional ghost writers, the threat of being disliked by the target audience is weak, even inexpistent, to many. Online audiences are inclined to accept content as long as it claims to be from a reliable source. On the Internet, the original composer of the said content matters insignificantly. Some informal studies also confirm that readers are fine with ghost blogging. In particular, respondents are quick to uphold that the practice is understandable, as long as the assumed author is submitted on the published post. Another strong point is the fact that ghost bloggers are professionals who rarely fail to deliver through the posts that they write.