Worst Fake Blog Ever?

We've seen some particularly egregious examples of fake blogs in the past.

From Raging Cow to the Wal-Marting thing, marketers have been running the entire gamut of authenticity from A to B (my apologies to Dorothy Parker).

But I have to say that this latest PlayStation Portable blog, created for Sony by advertising firm Zipatoni, scales impressive new lows.

So much to fisk, so little time. I'll leave it to AdRants to summarize the main problems with this woefully misguided initiative. I have neither the time, nor the energy to get into it myself.

I did take a couple of minutes to follow the trail of breadcrumbs leading to the Zipatoni site, where I encountered this rather disturbing piece of copy:

"At Zipatoni, buzz marketing means getting into consumers' conversations. We know we can't control the dialogue. But we tap into the right insight to deliver an idea that will get opinion leaders and even entire communities talking about it on their own. Just like that, we've converted the consumer into a passionate and credible message-bearer. Now that's good news."

Further evidence, to my mind, of two things - if you're thinking of including anything even remotely blog-like in your marketing mix:

1. Talk to your PR and communications people first, not your ad shop or, God help us, your "buzz marketing" firm;
2. Your first question, whenever anyone in the room suggests a blog initiative, should be: where's your blog?

I did a three-minute, totally non-scientific search on the names of three of the agency principals at Zipatoni. Not one of them appears to have a blog. I could be wrong, of course. Apologies in advance if my powers of Googling failed me.

Asking an agency-type who doesn't blog to help you create a blog-based marketing initiative is like asking a Nepalese sherpa to guide your Kenyan safari. Don't do it.

As for the whole idea of fake blogs, I find I want to quote Ivy Lee two days in a row:

"Tell the truth, because sooner or later the public will find out anyway."

Where, oh where is Tara Hunt when we need her?