It seems TechCrunch beat Blogger & Podcaster magazine to the punch Monday by announcing the trade publication's new advertising network, which is expected to eventually include access to a group health care plan.
In response to the TechCrunch report, Blogger & Podcaster Publisher Larry Genkin confirmed his company's plans for the Blogger & Podcaster Media Network, or BPN, and added a few more details about the program he said will allow participants "to earn a living from being a full-time blogger/podcaster." The BPN is open to all bloggers and podcasters, regardless of subscriber count, unique visitors, or any other such restrictions, Denkin said. "And, we don't require exclusivity."
The BPN does, however, require listing in the USA Today Blogger & Podcaster Guide. Listings in the guide used to cost $49.95 per month, but under an expanded deal between USA Today and the BPN, the fee has been reduced to $5 per month, Denkin said. And bloggers will get even more for their money with the addition of 15 new media partners beyond USA Today. Those partners are expected to be announced later Monday, Denkin said.
The advertising portion of the program is expected to roll out this summer and will provide members with the option of including content widgets like polls, video players, and news feeds, in which ads will be embedded. Revenues from those ads will be shared with the BPN members.
The group health care plan, which will come later, could be a major advantage over other recently announced blog ad networks, because maintaining health care coverage is often a major roadblock for those who hope to take their new media careers full time.