Editors' note: To close 2011, Palate Press: The online wine magazine will be featuring some of our top stories from the past year. Our third piece comes from Lindsey Zahn, offering a passion for both wine and the law, and giving us a primer on how those laws affect wine bloggers.
The early days of the Internet were like a snowy country road: directionless, unpaved, and in dire need of regulation. Whereas legislation governing the internet developed as business transactions and the amount of endusers grew, there are many aspects of law that still remain uncertain with respect to internet regulation.
This past June, I had the good fortune of attending the Wine Bloggers’ Conference in Walla Walla, WA. Over the course of three days, many of my long held beliefs about wine PR were turned upside down, as well as most of my public relations plan (both short and long-term) for Dry Creek Vineyard. Let me explain.
Social media has become one of the most used buzzwords of the last several years—along with Google (as a verb), subprime, death panels, friend, un-friend, tweet, and of course, blog. Wine has its own set of buzzwords, of course, from biodynamic and sustainable to screwcap, critter label, and boxed wine. Put social media and wine together, and you have a possibility to dramatically shift the way we connect with and consume wine.
The inaugural year of the Wine Bloggers Conference (WBC), as it was then called, was by turns a blustery and timid affair. Held in Santa Rosa, California, in the fall of 2008, it was the first time wine bloggers from all walks of life, talent and knowledge had the opportunity to come together and share common interests in a collective forum.