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Posted by on Apr 21, 2009 in Media | 1 comment

Paid Blogger Microtrend?

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Jeff Jarvis casts a skeptical eye on Mark Penn’s Wall Street Journal column today:

[Mark Penn says] there are now more paid bloggers than CEOs… As much as I would like to believe that blogging is a lucrative profession, I’m not sure I buy it — not quite yet. He says that bloggers with 100,000 readers a month are making $75k. Name a few. Still, the trend is heading this way and I’m certainly happy to hear talk of blogging as a business model.

From Penn’s column:

Paid bloggers fit just about every definition of a microtrend: Their ranks have grown dramatically over the years, blogging is an important social and cultural movement that people care passionately about, and the number of people doing it for at least some income is approaching 1% of American adults.

The best studies we can find say we are a nation of over 20 million bloggers, with 1.7 million profiting from the work ,and 452,000 of those using blogging as their primary source of income. That’s almost 2 million Americans getting paid by the word, the post, or the click — whether on their site or someone else’s. And that’s nearly half a million of whom it can be said, as Bob Dylan did of Hurricane Carter: “It’s my work he’d say, I do it for pay.”

He marshals an impressive array of statistics to get blogger hopes up. Then there’s this, “Most bloggers for hire pay $80 to get started, do it for about 35 months, and make a few hundred dollars.”