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When Good Bloggers Go Bad?

Posted By Darren Rowse 11th of January 2008 Pro Blogging News 0 Comments

Gizmodo has come in for quite a bit of criticism on their own blog today with a post Confessions: The Meanest Thing Gizmodo Did at CES where they posted a video of how they caused havoc at CES by switching many TV’s on and off using an IR clicker.

The prank was done and posted in humor however the comments section is filled with quite a few comments – some that see humor it it others that are quite disgusted.

Other sites now are chiming in with their opinion – some claiming that this ‘prank’ could hurt all bloggers attempting to get access to this type of show.

  • Joe also shares some thoughts on the introduction of bloggers at CES.
  • Valleywag chimes in and points out that Gizmodo attended as press not bloggers (although they are part of Gawker like Gizmodo so you’d expect them to defend it)
  • CNET’s Crave also isn’t too impressed (although they’re competitors with Gizmodo so you wouldn’t expect them to be)

What do you think? Humor? Bad Taste? Does it Hurt Bloggers?

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. To be honest, it doesn’t sound all that bad. Maybe some tasteless humor.

    I don’t think it will harm any bloggers just because a group of guys decided it would be funny to screw with some t.v.’s. Was it geek like and tasteless? Of course. Is that the point? No, at least I don’t think so…

  2. Bad Taste, yes. Hurting bloggers – I don’t remember voting for Gizmodo as President of Blogosphereland.

    Storm in a teacup, in my estimation (yet you covered it and I’m replying, so we’re all to blame…)

  3. Definitely bad taste. That was completely unnecessary.

  4. While I agree that it was in bad taste – I could not help but laugh and wonder why I didn’t think of bringing one of those things with me last time I went. I don’t blog about CES things and would not have identified myself as a blogger while there… Had Gizmodo just blogged about some random guy doing this, would all the naysayers still lack the sense of humor?

  5. Bad Behavior…

    If I was a conference organizer I would use this action to deny them any press passes in the future. Even the “media” needs to be responsible.

  6. It was definitely dumb. That whole blog network appears to be very childish in general. Not a big fan of gizmodos layout as well.

  7. I’m sure they will be checking for such devices in the future. It’s very disruptive.

    That said, I laughed for quite a while at the video! :)

  8. We used to do that as kids, running around in the evening time through the neigboorhood turning off tvs with our own remotes.

    Once is funny, but when people are giving business presentations, not so funny.

  9. Tsk Tsk Tsk! Bad, very bad…….

  10. yeah…as regular person, that’s really, really funny. As a blogger, it can’t help the fight to be taken seriously at trade events.

    Actually, this makes me think about a podcast I produced from a panel of bloggers at the Starz Denver Film Festival, where they had a pretty spirited discussion about being taken seriously at film festivals. It’s long, but here’s a link if anyone’s interested:


  11. I didn’t get around to watching the video, but in my opinion it sounds like just bad taste.

  12. Seems a little immature to me, but then again I think immaturity is rampant at the CES – a bunch of grown men drooling over electronic gadgets and such. Now, if I saw the 150-inch plasma display I’d probably drool a little, too.

  13. Geez, I can’t believe that anyone would consider this a representation of bloggers as a whole. What other groups does he represent? Men? People with odd names? Dudes who like tech stuff?

    Seriously, Ken Y-N said it best in the second comment!

  14. The people who chimed in about trade show people having a long memory? They’re right-I’ve been covering trade shows for a while now (music industry stuff) and I can tell you that EVERYBODY who has to deal with those things has a long memory.

    Press creds won’t a problem for Gizmodo next year–but getting any vendor who was burned by the TV turnoff will be a frickin’ MIRACLE.

    Good luck next year, GIzzies.

  15. It’s only funny if it doesn’t cost someone money. Like John Chow said above, it’s not cool if they’re in the middle of a presentation.

    Beyond that, it’s seriously juvenile. However, not too many geeks ever really grow up.

  16. Technology geeks gone wild. It wasn’t the right thing to do but they said sorry. Why can’t bloggers forgive them?

  17. What? I don’t think their prank will hurt other blogs chances of getting in CES. That’s like saying there was a black drunk driver, so we should ban all black people from driving… hint hint discrimination.

  18. Boys will be boys, I suppose. But I certainly don’t like this sort of behavior … i like to call myself a new age publisher and along time dream goal is to have a network of bloggers working toward a common goal. If an employee or business partner acted like this I’d find it hard not to get angry with him/her … I’d certainly be disappointed in their dedication to a goal.

    What if one of the TV’s they switched off was showing a product demo to some important client an exhibitor had spent weeks getting the propect to stand still long enough to view … ha ha ha _not_, Some people in this world have to work to earn al iving and the investment an exhibitor made for a show of that magnitude shouldn’t be tampered with by a third-party … they weren’t joking around at some frat party.

    That said, it’s not a surprise, because I gave up on Gizmodo along time ago … their writing tone and manners are not the type I feel comfortable with … and their fact checking and degree of technical knowledge is sub-par, IMO … but, of course, it works for them, so rock on, there’s room for all in this world.

  19. It was childish and I lost a lot of respect for Gizmodo today. They hurt the people trying to present who probably spent a lot of time to prepare for the show. I almost hope someone hacks the Gizmodo site and takes it down now.

  20. I heard about this earlier today and it’s disgusting. Companies spend huge amounts of money to impress potential vendors and the entire electronic world, and for Gizmodo to pull a stunt like this is appalling. I don’t know if there will be any repercussions due to their actions, but there should be. If I was giving a presentation and was interrupted by pure antics, there would be fists flying.

    Gizmodo shouldn’t be allowed back into CES next year. If I were the organizers of Macworld, I would pull their pass there as well.

  21. This is truly mean, a stunt like this should grant them to lose their pass to Macworld and have their press pass pulled next CES.

  22. I don’t see how this can hurt bloggers. They might not get invited back next time and it was childish but you have to see the funny side of it.

    And it’s certainly created a lot of stir. They have over 500 comments on that post already.

  23. Hmmm…. fine on the show floor once or twice, but disrupting a press conference? Not fair, not nice, childish and just plain mean. That poor chap presenting must have been mortified.

    I am sure there are plenty of people who have spoken at big events, and it is a nerve-racking affair at the best of times and this could really throw you off.

    So, Gizmodo – wise up and don’t be such jerks.

  24. don’t take me otherwise Darren but sometimes it feels like you post few articles just to let people leave comments and increase the interaction in your blog.

    I found two mistakes in this post. Looks like you were in a hurry?

  25. Talk about overreacting…

    The joke wasn’t funny, but people need to chill out.

  26. Well, they’re in good company! Steve Wozniak details how he did something like it at college in his autobiography, “iWoz”.

    Of course, he didn’t get caught – or confess until years later, when it didn’t matter.

    Half a lesson learned, maybe?!

    All success

  27. I don’t find anything wrong with that. As long as nobody else looked stupid, then its fine.

  28. Not sure it effects other bloggers, but if I were CES organisers, I’d certainly be inclined to prevent them from attending again.

    One things for sure their IR TV remotes will be banned and ceased at the door next year.

  29. Of all the things going on in this world, choosing subjects like this to get riled up about just blows my mind. If we put as much attention into real problems as we do into inconsequential stuff like this, we might actually accomplish something as human beings.

    Immature? Absolutely. Relevent? No.

  30. Bad taste=good publicity?

  31. I want one of those TV-Be-Gone devices (or a Ninja Remote). Basically they can turn-off any TV. You push the off button and the device cycles through all of the known turn-off codes. I hate seeing Faux (Fox) news on all over the place, and it would be great to have the power to covertly turn-off the TVs.

    That said, I don’t advocate what Gizmodo did. You can bet that people will make a big deal of it, and basically say you can’t trust bloggers as much as “real” journalists (or something like that).

  32. Hilarious!

    I don’t think Gizmodo will be invited back. We’ll see if it bites them on the bum.

  33. Cool prank BUT for someone like me who requests for accreditation in certain tech events…

  34. Childish, not funny, not cool. All of those vendors went through a lot of work and preparation for their CES presentations. I’m sorry to hear gizmodo behaved like 13 year olds. Gizmodo would do well to keep in mind the saying “don’t sh*t where you eat.” Will their behavior affect blogger invitations to CES?…no, I don’t think so.

  35. Most of the people complaining about this stunt were in no way impacted by it. They need to get a life, or a sense of humour. Some people found this funny, it created a lot of free publicity for the show, it brought a lot of readers to Gizmodo. Mission accomplished. Gizmodo will get heaps more invitations after this.

  36. I can see the humor on one hand, but on the other, blogs are still looked down uppon. This kind of behavior won’t help the fight to be taken seriously at events like this. There’s a big difference between the parties in the evening at conferences and events and the business of the day. That’s based on what I’ve seen at other conferences. So there’s a time and a place and I don’t think that was either.

  37. It seemed a pretty minor prank. A few turned off TVs is an inconvenience but nothing more — even at CES. It’s interesting to see the reactions on various blogs though. It’s basically a litmus test that shows whether you have a sense of humor or not.

  38. Ok, I have to admit that them messing with presentations was just wrong! But that put aside, it makes me go, how come I never thought of that? It would have been funny as hell to see a whole wall of monitors go blank and the techs trying to figure out what went wrong.

  39. It was harmless. Seriously, who got hurt? NO ONE.
    And TVs are annoying pests. They ought to be turned off.

    That gadget has been around for years. If TV manufactures want to keep TVs on, they can figure out a way to bypass the gadget.

  40. They didn’t just turn-off someone’s annoying TV. They turned off TVs being used for a presentation. Killing TVs showing Fox News is one thing. Ruining a presentation is another.

    They’ve been banned from CES for life, by the way.

  41. I don’t think it’ll have a big effect on bloggers as a whole. Bloggers being invited to CES? perhaps. Their blog? definitely.

    But while I’d heard of Gizmodo occasionally I don’t think they can really be used as any kind of standard.

  42. No, I think conference organisers and media outlets treat blogs and other publishers on a case by case basis. If the publisher is also an influencer, then it makes sense to invite them along.

    If Gizmodo screw up one year, does that mean Engadget will be tarred with the same brush? I don’t think so.

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