The Bwog and the Spectrum, the respective blogs of The Blue and White and the Spectator, have had an occasionally contentious relationship since the founding of the latter in March 2010. Relations are largely driven by spontaneous matters of practicality.
History and nature of the relationship
When the Bwog was founded in 2006, it quickly became a popular source of instantaneous campus news, roiling the staff of the Spectator, Columbia's traditional campus newspaper, and increasing tensions between the paper and Bwog's parent, the student magazine The Blue and White. Spectator spent the next four years rolling out a succession of ultimately unsuccessful blogging efforts, before the founding of Spectrum in Spring 2010, which has, for some reason, taken off in a way that has managed to peel back the advantages of Bwog's early online campus news lead.
In any case, many students read both the Spectrum and the Bwog, as both blogs provide a unique and fresh aspect on campus life. Naturally, both Spectrum and Bwog occasionally have comments from readers threatening to switch to the competition when those readers think a post is bad.
Cultural and Social Circles
The two organizations have developed largely distinct social circles with unique cultural traits that seemingly further the cool hostility between the two. Spec is staffed by many students with ties to Athletics and Greek life, while Bwog's staff trends vaguely more "intellectual" — its only tangible connection to either former group is ADP, itself an outlier in the Greek community.
Although many Spec alumni pursue postgraduate careers in media and journalism, they are joined by many "preprofessional" (think finance/consulting) types who are only found on Bwog as the butt of many derisive jokes.
Transcendence of the social divide is not uncommon, however.
Speccie comments on Bwog
Sometimes (not known how often), they lied. For instance, on a 2010 Room Selection entry, a user with the screenname "Ben Cotton" (then Spectator's editor) wrote:
Important New Housing Info:
EC Exclusion suites floors 12 and 14 apparently do not have working dishwashers or refrigerators any more and will not be replaced this summer. This is a completely unforeseen mistake by housing services, but they say that renovations were not done in time and they do not have new/refurbished appliances on the way for these 2 floors.
-check out the spectrum blog
What was said in the comment turned out not to be true, though this comment could have easily come from someone pretending to be Cotton.
Bwog, for its part, created mild "controversy" when it deleted several comments referencing Spectrum in a post "Freaking Out? Free Roti?" on a post which was published one day after Spectrum was launched. The perceived censorship caused a bit of an outcry from Bwog commenters.
i am not from the same IP address, but i also think it’s sort of lame to delete comments saying spectrum is good when spectrum leaves up positive comments about bwog. it’s not really advertising if it’s a conversation, right? and don’t you want comments to be a dialogue?
However, comments were deleted if and only if they advertised the Spectrum. This business as usual for the Bwog, which normally deletes posts advertising other sites. Nonetheless, in order to cater to Spectrum-boosters, the Bwog has since let Spectrum-centric comments stand unmolested.
As of October 18, 2010, Spectator's entire website has a Alexa ranking of 80,113 while Bwog has a ranking of 1,019,633. There is no separate Alexa ranking for Spectrum alone, making it difficult to determine the blogs' relative readership — although this may not matter given that fact that the blog appears prominently on the front page of Spectator's website. Moreover, those rankings are for the entire Internet and not just Columbia affiliates.