The American Society of Business Publication Editors says it will "completely rewrite" its ethics guidelines. I'm thrilled. And you should be too. ASBPE's move comes at a difficult time in B2B media. Publishers and advertising sales staff are feeling competitive pressure from new online publications, RSS and search. The smartest folks on the business side will find a way to succeed in this new environment. The dumbest will demand concessions from editorial.
Any B2B journalist who doesn't see how ugly things are likely to get in the next few months just isn't paying attention. Look at this piece in Mediaweek that talks about how Lexus is pressuring publishers to accept product placement. In particular, Lexus is calling for "modified “advertorial”-type stories that would not carry an advertorial label and would be written by staff writers in order to enhance the credibility of the piece." That would be about as clear a violation of the ethics policies of ASBPE and ABM as I can imagine.
For more on ethics, take a look at this earlier post and the comment section.
And to see what some creative advertising types are doing to compete, take a look here.