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Believe it or not, I come not to bury Wal-Mart, but to praise it. Quietly launched late last year, Wal-Mart’s Check Out blog provides a good example to all would-be corporate blogs. Most corporate blogs seem to be either mere extensions of the company’s PR department–every post sounds like a press release–or bland soulless entities that would have its readers believe that the blog is actually penned by the CEO or other ranking executive (you can just smell the vetting in those too). Unlike the vast majority of white-bread company blogs, however, the authors for the Wal-Mart blog actually have their own voices and personalities (as well as pictures that make them even more immediate).

Even more surprisingly given the passions that Wal-Mart can stir among some segments of the population, from the posts I’ve been seeing over the last couple of weeks, the bloggers and company itself takes a pretty liberal stance on commenting. There’s no evidence of censoring negative comments or stifling debate withing the comments. Take note companies. This is how it should be done. Blogs require real voices to even past the lowest muster test for authenticity, and real conversation and community is another must in this medium. Does the Check Out blog pass these tests? Check. So far, I’ve found some of the posts to be very interesting. This will bear following for a while. If anything changes, I’ll be the first to jump all over. Of course, Wal-Mart has been burned once already by this whole blogging thing. So it’s nice to see them do it right this time around.

[Note: moved from earlier content blog, Contented]

Post Author: Timothy Truxell

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