Posted by Tim Stobbs on May 8, 2007
Over at Problogger they are having a little contest where you can win $1001 in cash for posting your own top five list. Since I won’t mind winning and I already had an idea on this post I put together this list on the top 5 reasons personal finance blogs are better than the media.
Reason #5: Reading Level
Most newspapers and magazines are unfortunately written to a grade 6 to grade 8 reading level, meaning that your supposed to avoid big words and break down somewhat complicated ideas into tiny little pieces so your children can understand them. Blogs are not chained to this level and can tackle more complicated issues and provide a deeper analysis of the issues.
Reason #4: Objectivity
Unfortunately in the personal finance world many newspaper and magazine ads are thinly dressed advertisements for products or services. How often have you read an article about retirement where all the people quoted in the story sell mutual funds? How can that possibly be objective? Bloggers are a different breed, we often don’t have anything to sell you other than the post you are reading. Also since we are not chained to our advertisers we can be totally objectivity on an issue without fear of costing ourselves revenue.
Reason #3: Discussion
In traditional media it takes days if not weeks for letters to the editor to be posted providing a painfully slow forum for discussion on an issue. Blogs can provide feedback within hours and can take a post in entirely new directions which can lead to new posts by the next day. This provides a truly interactive method of discussing an issue.
Typically in the traditional media you will never see anyone publish their net worth of tell you what they spent last month. Personal finance bloggers can be different. By using a pseudonym a blogger is free to discuss their real numbers so you can really understand the choices being faced by other people just like you.
Reason#1: Making Personal Finance Truly Personal
The best reason by far on why personal finance bloggers are better than the media is they make it personal. They discuss what they are feeling and all the other irrational thoughts that go through their heads about money. A debt blogger will show their progress and discuss their temptations and failures. A investment blogger can provide technical analysis and still post their gut feeling on something. This allows them to truly connect with their readers who can often see bits of themselves in what they are reading.