Personally, I'm not worried about Brauer or the effect of mini-sponsors on news coverage. The underwriting model seems to combine the best of the endowed chair and artist patronage filtered through grassroots fundraising. How is $25 going to sway a reporter even in these parlous times?
However, it is nice to see the web offering subliminal advertising rates that even Denny Hecker can afford.
If you want to see how the big money is aiming at sponsoring coverage, check out Dad-o-Matic, one of a number of independent blogs sent on a $500 shopping spree by Kmart. Chris Brogan, who founded the site, clearly disclosed the sponsorship. Aside from one swipe at pre-Sears K-Mart, though, did he pull any punches in his account?
Sort of like you could say anything about your sex life with your wife standing there.
Since I'm not a regular Dad-o-Matic reader, it's hard to say how Edward R. Murrow he was, but his post strikes me as the discount store equivalent of this review of Will Smith's Seven Pounds.
Oh, and full disclosure. I dropped some coin in the Brauer pot. I'll let you know when I get a link. (Ahem!) But that's not my real worry. I just want my credit card information to be safe.