USA Today reports on bloggers on the payroll of government tourist bureaus.
Blogs tend to criticize other blogs, and many blogs permit comments (my current technical difficulties notwithstanding) so the blog’s culture of critique should limit the harm from this. Blog content should stand on its own, regardless of funding. But be aware of potential shading, influenced by financing of blogs.
This isn’t new, surprising, or all that different from traditional travel writers whose perspectives may be colored by the advertisers at their publications or the free trips and upgrades handed out by travel providers. It’s always worthwhile using a skeptical eye towards travel writers.
I want to know, though, how to get my hands on some of this money — then you could hermaneut my own writing all you want!