Like most other business travelers who publish blogs, Steve Broback discovered their power by accident.

He had reserved a room at the Muse Hotel near Times Square, with the understanding that the rate would include free Internet access. But when he plugged into the high-speed data network, Mr. Broback, a conference organizer from Woodinville, Wash., was asked to pay $9.95 to connect.

“I asked about it at the front desk, and was told that the box to connect to the Internet was included in my stay,” he said. “Getting it to work would cost $9.95 a day.”

Frustrated, Mr. Broback posted an entry on his Web journal about the experience. Less than two weeks later, a hotel manager sent an e-mail to apologize, refunded his Internet connection fee and pledged to change how the hotel discloses its surcharges.

That incident, which happened nearly two years ago (the hotel is under new management), inspired Mr. Broback to start a business-travel blog called InflightHQ (inflighthq.com). Hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of other business travelers who write blogs have also learned that their Web journals are more than online platforms to blow off steam.

“Bloggers have the potential to change business travel,” said Clancy Ratliff, an assistant professor of English at East Carolina University, in Greenville, N.C., who wrote her dissertation on blogging. “Maybe they haven’t reached a critical mass yet, the way bloggers have in other places. But their influence may be growing.”

Get the full story at The New York Times