This is in response to comments that Martha Stewart made on Bloomberg TV about bloggers. They were disparaging remarks that bloggers are not experts and she has a problem with them because they are not qualified. Martha Stewart currently runs an advertising program with bloggers named Martha’s Circle, spoke last year at BlogHer, and sends free craft supplies to bloggers for them to review. This letter is my own opinion after hearing these remarks.
You said the other day on Bloomberg TV that Bloggers are not experts and that it’s becoming a problem in your opinion. Pointedly you said, “They are not the experts and we have to understand that”. I’ll give you that – I am not an expert but I am also not a problem. Let me explain:
First you asked who are these bloggers and pointed out that we are not editors of Vogue. True, I am not the editor of Vogue and nor do I ever care to be. Vogue does not represent who I am nor does it represent the majority of America. I am a better representative of America than an Vogue editor will ever be. Simply I am woman in her 30′s trying hard to raise her children while my husband works hard to support his family, a middle class family at that. We are normal. Our cars to the people who actually buy things found in Vogue probably look like death traps or hoopties. Yet we are proud of them because we work hard for them.
I am waist deep in the muck of motherhood. My house is not perfect and it never will be. It’s not even a good thing. Most days it’s a slightly smelly thing that has a maze of cereal in the living room. My current decorating style in my formal dining room consists of about 30 pictures drawn by my children on plain white paper attached to the wall with (gasp) bright blue painters tape. They decorated the dining room with their drawings as they saw fit and the collection grows daily. Honestly it’s beautiful because they made it. Making things does not equal perfection, Sometimes it’s the purple dinosaur with 6 legs diligently drawn in crayon that defines what is worthy to hang on our walls.
In all honestly, were you an expert when you started your journey to were you are now? No. You took a step to in that direction and have learned along the way. You did not walk into the kitchen at 20 and decide to make the perfect souffle from scratch with no guidance. Nor did you walk into your non existant personal craft room the size of my house at 22 and make the perfect scalloped edge punch by hand. The expert that you are now considered to be is not because you were born that way. It’s because you took those risks to learn and study the areas that you feel passionate about. Why can’t you afford that same right to bloggers?
Yes there are bloggers that don’t test recipes first or sometimes steal other’s content. There’s also dishonest lawyers, Food Network Chefs that pad their resume, and published authors that been found to have blantant copyright violations within the published works! You can’t lump us all together and assume that we are all the same. There are bloggers (myself included) that do what we do with the highest ethics possible. Personally I think the bloggers that work hard with high integrity deserve respect.
Finally let me tell you a summary of what bloggers are. We are self taught people who are trying our best to educate ourselves daily on the best photograhpy techniques, graphic design, best writing practices not to mention studying whatever our niche is whether that is crafting, parenting, business or the many other categories that bloggers represent. We strive hard to learn and grow. Many of us work late at night after the kids go to bed. You may know how to cut beautiful flowers out of paper but can you also design your own site while photographing those flowers and wrangling a family life?
It makes me curious as to why you market your products to bloggers for reviews, have a blogger ad network, or follow bloggers online through social media and have lists on twitter for them (you might want to remove me from your list btw – @ClumsyCrafter). If bloggers are a problem why are you relying on them to spread the word about what your corporation is doing?
Bloggers work hard and are jacks of all trades. If you can’t respect that than honestly it’s your right. However it will also be the line where I lose my long term devotion and respect for what you do.
One of those bloggers.
Where do you stand on this? If you agree leave a comment or tell me more on my Facebook Page.