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Wednesday, December 28, 2005 

In The House

We now interrupt our regularly scheduled break to comment on the PJM ads which have finally (sometimes it takes a month!) appeared on some but not all of the member sites. (What, you want everything up in a month?! Do you know how long it takes to send an e-mail these days?!?! (You know how it is, with all that spam out there!))

Of course, they're all still Doubleclick, none of them are clearly targeted toward a blog-reading audience (unlike, say, those highly compelling ACLU-are-communists blogads you see all over the dang place) and quite a few are still in-house ads.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, PJM remains PJM's most loyal advertiser.

But anyway, while sitting around with the family this week, bored out of our minds and so letting those minds wander elsewhere, we realized something not quite profound but still worth sharing: those idiotic in-house ads are more telling about why PJM is likely to fail than we first realized.

Let's start with an easy one:

    "Where else can someone write unedited in third person as an antlered mammal?" -- Bull Moose

How, in the name of all that is good and sacred, does this appeal to anyone BUT somebody who is already sold on blogging? Why would an advertiser care? You know what an advertiser might actually care about? The fact that this unexplained "Bull Moose" fellow is actually Marshall Wittmann, former Christian Coalition guy, current DLC guy, always a McCain guy. Think he might get a wide number of readers? He just might. But then again... Mr. Wittmann isn't a PJM blogger.

Here's two just demand to be considered together:

    "You couldn't have a starker contrast between the multiple layers of checks and balances, and a guy sitting in his living room in his pajamas writing what he thinks." -- Jonathan Klein, former CBS executive

    "The core of the American people has manifested itself most purely in blogs because elites for so long controlled all the avenues of communication. Those days are over now." -- Tammy Bruce, Editorial Board

Look, we all think the bloggers won the argument over Rathergate, and Charles Johnson deserves as much credit as Buckhead and the guys at Power Line. But the gloating has got to stop. Maybe it seemed for awhile there like bloggers were going to take down another media figure every other week. After Eason Jordan, heck, the future was wide open. But that isn't quite where we're at now.

What's more, we think Ms. Bruce is oversimplifying the then vs. now she sets up. Information has been democratized somewhat, but let's not kid ourselves: the blogs with the most readership and most prestige are the ones run by professional journalists, professors of law or economics or you-name-it, business executives, established writers, etc. Of course a few "nobodies" have risen to become elites... but even they aren't representative of "the people." They still tend to be a bit better educated, a bit more libertarian, and a lot more politically obsessed. The "core of American people" don't read blogs. The political obsessives who once contented themselves to read a lot and write vituperative e-mails to each other are now writing those posts for the public at large. But the vast majority of the public hasn't tuned in.

    "Opinion I can handle; it's biased narrative posing as objective reporting that really needs to stop." -- Jeff Goldstein, PJ blogger

Agreed! But so what? It's a bit of a non-sequitur unless you're already of a mind for media criticism.

And aren't you actually PJM, or as RLS puts it, PJMedia? Maybe this is nitpicking. But it still shows the organization's identity isn't terribly clear. Obviously those "branding" folks they hired awhile back weren't any good, but you'd at least think they'd tell them to pick something and promote the hell out of it. Pajamas Media? PJM? PJMedia? PJ? For crying out loud, you need one.

In all, the above quotes remind us of how self-centered -- and self-aggrandizing -- this whole Pajamas Media project has been. Simon and Johnson seem to think everyone has the exact same view of the blogs as they do, or maybe they just don't care. It's a big inside joke and they think everyone's laughing along.

Sorry, we're just laughing at you.

Doubleclick is a technology service provider. No more, no less. Stop trying to make them sound so sinister. they sold their ad network to maxonline like 2 years ago.

Building a media sales program takes time. Pajamas may or may not succeed but it's awful early to make a reasonable judgement.

Investment in pure online media revenue models remains risky. During the last year (mostly due to the exuberance over Google), there have been a raft of new media ventures and investments. Pajamas may just become another casualty of this "Bubble 2".

I do think most of your criticism of Pajamas is unwarranted and really just consists of personal attacks. It appears to me that you have a personal dislike of the people who run the company and not with the company itself.

when does the PJM Death Pool Death Pool start? Dude...this is lame... and I'm rooting for PJM to fail.

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