This and That

I think I've made the official switch from Google to Bing for my general search needs. My favorite parts of the "decision engine" are the pop-up bullets with more information by individual items as you look at search results and (yes, I admit this) the gorgeous daily photos of interesting places. I have yet to see a photo that didn't make me want to immediately visit the place in question!

Think you want to be a librarian because you're an American who likes to read? Well, no surprise to those of us in the trenches--there are no jobs. And, according to Library Journal's Placement & Salaries 2009, starting salaries fell from $42,361 in 2007 to $41,579 in 2008, the most recent reporting period. (I would expect another drop when the 2009 data comes in next year with the worsened economic conditions here.)

Of course, my starting job out of library school in early 1995 was a temp job with no benefits for $8.25/hour. . . . Not sure there is such a thing as "good times" in the library world, though I was definitely determined to stay in a specific location then, which never helps with a job search.

If you're a book blogger, are you planning to change the way you blog as a result of the FTC's requirements, effective December 1, 2009, including that you disclose any "tangible connections" in your reviews?

See the full, 81-page PDF file of the new guidelines here.

As per Michael Cader in Publishers Marketplace:

The main point of essence for book publishers (and book bloggers) is the determination that “bloggers may be subject to different disclosure requirements than reviewers in traditional media.” They state that “if a blogger’s statement on his personal blog or elsewhere (e.g., the site of an online retailer of electronic products) qualifies as an ‘endorsement,’” due to either a relationship with the “advertiser” or the receipt of free merchandise in the seeking of a review, that connection must be disclosed.

Personally, I already buy the vast majority (probably something like 98%) of the books I blog about. If I receive the book as a free download of some sort, whether via Amazon on my Kindle or Harlequin on their site or whatever, I disclose that information. If I say nothing, assume I've bought the book.

And, honestly, there's no "buying" a positive review from me--or probably any other blogger in this for the love of reading. Still, I do think that full disclosure is never a bad thing, and, as I just noted, I've always tried to follow that practice, anyway.

What might be a slippery slope, and more difficult for a regular blogger doing this for fun on his/her own time, is to know to disclose that x publisher gave you a free book two years ago, and now you're writing a review of an entirely different book that you purchased that came from x publisher. . . . That's complicated.

So, I guess I'll be noting that I'm part of the free Harlequin Ambassadors program and have received free books in the past whenever (and if) I review something from them in the future. Something I wouldn't have thought to do before this FTC situation, honestly, because I don't feel a conflict.

Very interested to hear what others are doing!

And how exciting that Angie from A Book a Day left a comment to say that at least one person found her blog through my posting. Whoot! I get so excited about comments like this one. (See my original posting here, and Angie's blog here.)

Yeah, I'm so one of those cynical people out to blog to make a buck and con others into buying crap books. NOT!

Comments

StephanieD said…
All the books I've reviewed so far have been either bought or borrowed so I feel I don't need to disclose anything. I've gotten one book for free from a contest so I will mention that fact when I do review it. Otherwise, my only thought is - good luck enforcing it, FTC.
I agree enforcement will be difficult, but I can also see them using "make examples out of people" cases like happened with illegal downloading and sharing of music files.

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