Are you an authentic blogger?

10 February, 2014

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I write this title only because I came across a guest post written on one of my favourite websites/blogs by a writer who’d decided to vacate into her own rectum. Her blurb wrote something along the lines of, “Alongside blogging I am a published writer, I am not just a blogger.” I took abit of an offence to that, she may as well have written, “Oh bless you all with your little blogs, but I do this sh*t properly!” To me her statement told me more about herself and her own insecurities than her entire article ever would. I’ve seen other bloggers write similar condescending statements too such as, “I’m a professional blogger and I take what I do seriously.” No kidding love, you take yourself so seriously that I’m now bored and I’m currently leaving your website, bye!

But this all got me thinking, what constitutes anyone nowadays, with the freedom of the world wide web, to say someone can’t be anything other than what they choose to be, and since when did the “Blogging Police” become so PC as to establish what grounds grant you an authentic and legitimate blogger?

 

 

The Blogging “Rules”

 

Since entering the blogosphere just over a year ago I’ve slowly come to learn the do’s and don’ts of the blogging world if you want to get ahead, get noticed and be taken “seriously.”  There are now, apparently,  blogging rules every blogger must abide by in order to increase popularity and credibility, and if any said blogger hasn’t accomplished certain things or attained a certain status by thus amount of time thou shall not be aloud to call themselves an authentic or “real” blogger. It all seems abit much right? At the end of the day, we all write down words that appear on the internet that everybodies free to read, so really, apart from afew grammatical errors and the odd paycheck, how are we all any different? I’m not trying to down play anyones accomplishments here, on the contrary, if you’re lucky enough to blog or write for a living, great! If I wrote an article for the Times and had a debut novel due out, you can be sure I’d be letting everyone from here to Yemen know, but perhaps certain bloggers should realise there’s really no need to vilify the people who are just trying to have fun and express who they are.

Imagine if an established singer turned around to an up and coming vocalist and said, “Yeah, you may be able to sing, but I’ve filled stadiums, I’ve sold albums, you’re not a real singer!” We’d all look upon this person with disbelief and disgust, yet where writing and blogging are concerns their seems to be a sort of hierarchy and I find it all quite amusing. The internet has given us all the blessing of having our own voice, so even if not a single person were to click onto your website or blog, you’ve still been granted the freedom and the platform to write down your own opinions, show the world your passions and write the word F**K multiple times if you want to.

I personally love having this little space of mine on the internet, my blogposts subject matters may be a tad random, but they’re still mine and not re- edited within an inch of their life so they sound nothing like me. I write how I speak so if I write something along the lines of, “Oh My God. Holy Sh*t. You need to make these cookies!” My friends will tell you that if I were saying this sat next to you I’d be staring you dead in the eyes, waving my arms in the air frantically and basically looking alittle crazy, but most of all I’d be saying it with passion,which where food is concerned, I try to get across in my posts. Everyone has their own unique style of blogging and I think it’s high time we embraced and excepted them all instead of all trying to conform to a “standard” procedure that deems your blog worthy of greatness. I personally love finding new blogs, reading the posts and hearing the authors own unique voice throughout. I honestly couldn’t give a rats bum about how many comments a blogger has on their post, or how many followers someone has, for me, it’s all about being able to relate to that person and genuinely being interested in what they have to say. In some ways thats why I think the best blogs are the anonymous ones simply because the author isn’t trying to impress anyone, they’re simply using the internet as an outlet to express all their inner most feelings and that, in itself, is  pretty beautiful in my eyes.

Discussion Forums

 

Another concept the blogging world has introduced me to is discussion forums, they confuse the hell out of me. A  blogging friend told me about the popular forum, “Get off my internet” which apparently discusses topics surrounding other blogs. Basically this is a website solely based on slagging off the protagonist of a particular blog with statements such as, “Oh my God why does she post so many pictures, I can’t stand her, she can’t even spell right, idiot!” or “I bet you any money her Prada bags not real! This bitch is so fake!” I was shocked, can’t the members of these types of forums see that these sites are just breeding grounds for negativity? Think about it, you’re all a member of an online gang that slag off other people. I can guarantee the people who write comments such as, “She’s not even that pretty, infact she’s pig ugly!” These are the types of people who are unhappy with one or often multiple areas of their own lives and probably still click onto their rivals blogposts daily; which inevitably is just perpetuating their whole negative existance, and also improving their rivals viewing statistics! Happy people don’t invest their energy into belittling others to feel better about themselves, they have’nt got the time, and in all honestly they couldn’t give a flying f*ck because they’re too busy loving life. Insecure people on the other hand, oooh they’ve got all the time in the world.

If a blogger wants to post forty-five pictures of themselves into one post, so what, who cares, it’s their blog, and if it offends you so, then thats simple, either close your eyes or don’t. click. onto. their. website. It baffles me how people continue to pay attention to things that annoy the shit out of them? Whats more, they take the time to set up an account, log in and post just how much a certain blog/person annoys them, and this benefits them how? Oh wait yep, thats right, it doesn’t.

So if you’re the type of person that writes negative comments regarding someone else on discussion boards or websites, or you try to voice the “correct” procedure to blog, maybe take a step back and look at your own life and see if there’s any areas that could possibly welcome a change. Oh, and if you’re thinking, it’s not just me who thinks this way, loads of people agree with me, remember, negativity loves company and what you give out in the world  is what you will always attract back to yourself.

If you’re curious or new to the whole discussion board saga take a look at this article written by Morgan Shanabah from 818.com, here she talks about this very matter. Then, see the first comment below which a pro GOMI member posted.

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Yep. Now I don’t know about you, but to me, the above commenter either needs to take a valium or get laid, twice.

 

Promoting your brand

 

Lastly, if you’re a blogger I’m sure everyone has told you, you need to promote your brand! For anyone who follows this blog I’m sure it’s quite clear for you all to see I don’t promote my blog enough, which I know is a bad thing and I bloody need to start doing so! If I’m really honest, I think I’m just too lazy to, buuuuut, if I’m really, really honest it makes me cringe when I see bloggers retweeting, then retweeting, and then retweeting again that they have a new blogpost up. I mean I  get it, everyone, me included, wants their blog to be seen, so three or four times a day retweets for a new post of course,  but is it really neccesary to retweet it every half an hour? Argghhh don’t hate me for writing this, if thats you then I’m sorry and please don’t take it personally. It doesn’t mean I dislike you or your blog it’s just like I said, maybe I’m just alittle lazy?

When I come across some blogs now I can almost feel the pressure they’re putting on themselves to make sure their blog gets seen.  On top of that there seems to be so many affiliate websites and blogs every blogger must join nowadays in order to gain maximum exposure that I think if you focus too much on building an audience sometimes you can lose valuble content in the process. Now we’ve all seen you can actually make a living out of blogging, and in some cases even be propelled into an online celebrity sensation; which could then open doors into the world of presenting and modelling, because of all this, the mounting pressure to succeed seems to take over what blogging is truly about. I follow so many blogs within fashion, lifestyle, well-being, food and decor and my favourites, and probably the ones most likely to succeed in the long run, are the ones who seem to look like they’re genuingly having fun and loving what they do. It’s like anything in life really, if you love what you do then success usually follows.

 

So, all in all, whether you blog for a living, or just for yourself,  or perhaps you’ve been blogging secretly for months and your’re still deliberating on the right time to showcase yourself to the world. Whatever the reason, you should cherish your little space on the internet, you’re putting a large chunk of yourself on display for the world to see, no matter the judgement, and that in itself is pretty fearless. So really who cares about a condescending “professional opinion” or  a patronizing suggestion from the “Blogging police” no-one should be able to disdain you or your voice, no matter what certain heirarchys will tell you. Your blog was authentic from the day you typed your firsts words and published them onto the internet simply becaue it’s yours and there will only ever be one you.

 

Happy Monday guys!

 

B xx

 

 

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Alex February 10, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Wow, I can’t believe there is a website purely purposed at slagging people off. I agree that the people who dish out the comments often feel the most insecure about themselves. What an unnecessary waste of time to sit there talking about other people in a negative way.

I also agree with you about the annoying re-re-re-tweeting of new blog posts. Once is enough. I actually just found out that you can have your posts automatically posted onto twitter through feedburner without having to do a single thing except publish the post. I’ve just signed up so I’ll see how that goes. I’m also an extremely lazy self-promoter. I just enjoy writing and publishing. Boom, job done. Most of the time :)

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 12:32 pm

Oh my God no way, I need to invest in this automated service, perfect for the lazy girl lol! I’m with you, just writing and pressing publish is usually as far as I go, oh wellmaybe we should up our game in 2014! ha xxx

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Rosie February 10, 2014 at 2:22 pm

Gah, just wrote a really long comment, and my computer crashed!!

Great post – totally agree with you, there’s far too much negativity and bitchiness in the blogging world – it’s so horrible and so unnecessary (do you think it’s got anything to do with a high ratio of females writing and reading blogs?!?!)

My blog’s been going for 3 years, and my reader numbers are pretty low (I think – I have no idea what the ‘norm’ is) but I really don’t mind/care!! I write my blog so I have a record of recipes I’ve made and food experiences, and so my friends and anyone who does want to read can maybe gain some inspiration, but it is not to make money, or have some sort of status.

What also really upsets me is PR companies who get in touch trying to get you to write about something that’s got nothing to do with your blog. I get approached and then black listed if I say no, but there’s no way I’d write about something that’s not of interest to me, and therefore anyone who reads my blog, just for a bit of free product… But many people do do this :( I think it just removes any genuine-ness from the blog.

Rant over, great piece!!

Rosie xx

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Ahh nothing worse, you finish writing a great paragraph then you press one button by istake and ITS GONE Noooooo!!!! lol! I think you make a good point, women, at times, depending on how secure they are can be super bitchy! Whenever i come across that type of person now though I just know it’s nothing to do with me and more how they feel about themselves. Rosie I love your blog and good for you for not promoting thngs you couldn’t give a toss about! All about the genuine here xx

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Rosie February 10, 2014 at 2:41 pm

You’re so right, self-reflection is a wicked thing, and it is always about that person them selves, not what/who they’re reflecting on to. Aw, thanks for the blog love! Love yours too :)
R xx

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Lulu February 10, 2014 at 2:26 pm

This is the most refreshingly brilliant post that I have read in AGES! Oh my goodness, I completely agree with you and have laughed out aloud at the poignancy of some of your lines above! I LOVE your space on the internet, keep up the fabulous work! x x x

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 2:35 pm

Ahh thanks so much Lulu! I think every blogger has come across another blogger before where you stop and think, really? It’s only a blog love we’re not running for presidency here! xxx

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Josie February 10, 2014 at 2:27 pm

Brilliant post! I think people should be free to blog about what they want and not be patronised!!
Josie xoxo

Fashion Mumblr

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 2:36 pm

Absolutely! xxx

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Ché Dyer February 10, 2014 at 3:46 pm

Lulu (in the comments above) just sent me a link to this blog post and I LOVE it! We were just talking the other day about how people feel the need to attach pre-fixes to their title in order to justify it to everyone.. “Oh… I’m an “ASPIRING” writer…” I’d say that if you write a blog, then you write. Then you are a writer. Simple! awesome post!

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 3:51 pm

Ahh thank you Che! Exactly my point, if you write a blog, then you’re a writer! People take life so seriously at times,and then start to worry what other people may think when really as long as you’re having fun, who cares! Thanks for stopping by xx

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Purple Ivy February 10, 2014 at 3:57 pm

This made me laugh. Couldn’t agree more.

xoxo
Ivy
http://www.purrpleivy.com/

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Katie February 10, 2014 at 4:09 pm

Thank you for this post! Especially this line; ‘Now I don’t know about you, but to me, the above commenter either needs to take a valium or get laid, twice.’ LOL!

I totally agree, I feel there’s a lot of pressure on bloggers these days to be ‘up there’ whenever someone asks me at an event why I’m there and I respond ‘I blog’ They’re like “ooo have I heard of you?” I snort and mumble “err probably not!” Which is the honest truth and I love blogging with no pressure. I mean, it would be amazing to have it as a career, but I’m not as interesting as Rosie Londoner or Chiara Ferragni!

I still can not believe though that those kind of websites exist. I can honestly put up my hand and say I have NEVER said anything online about someone I didn’t quite agree with. I literally can’t believe this is really a platform that people read! It’s demeaning and I hope those people have heard of Karma.

Katie <3

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 4:20 pm

Hi Katie, I know it’s totally bizarre that people would go out of their way just to slag off other people??? Ugh I can’t believe people say things like, “Oh have I heard of you?” everyone’s so eager to jump on the celebrity band wagon nowadays! Plus remember those girls have been blogging for over five years so it could be the same for you in the future or, even better you could end up being a shit hot beauty/fashion or lifestyle writer in one of the top London magazines and end up writing your own novel! No-one really knows whats around the corner, as long as you do what you love thats all that matters xx

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Tasha February 10, 2014 at 6:49 pm

Wow, I could not agree with you more. I actually posted last week about a similar topic, but not specifically about the blogging world, but the world in general. It is amazing how negative and judgmental people can be toward one another. Why can’t we all just get along!?!??! I cannot believe they have an entire website devoted to promoting such negativity…..people and their shenanigans can be quite comical. Such miserable little soles to take pleasure in putting others down. Anyway, great post :)

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Thiswomansstyle February 10, 2014 at 7:12 pm

I know, crazy right! It’s sad to see that some people only get along by belittling others. I’m going to head over to your blog now to check out your post!
Thanks for stopping by xxx

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Anna February 11, 2014 at 12:21 am

Rebecca,

Love everything you wrote here and of course your genuine, honest, funny and well-put-together blog.

I find myself drawn to those blogs you describe: the honest ones, the ones who aren’t trying to conform, the ones who are trying to express their feelings, in blog form.

I have grappled with my blogging at times – how much do I reveal? What should I be writing? Why are people here? Why aren’t people here? I’ve had criticism and then been frozen, afraid of writing and being shot down again… But I realise that actually only serves to take the joy out of blogging, make it a piece of “work”, rather than the piece of me that it was intended to be. What I have found when I post my genuine thoughts and feelings is that I attract support from wonderful people whom I love having in my virtual life. There will be many others who will take one look at my “amateur” blog and reject it, but I have actually come to be totally OK with this – same as in real life: why make friends/acquaintances who don’t want to know you?

Thanks for sharing.

Anna

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Thiswomansstyle February 11, 2014 at 9:15 am

Hey Anna,
I’ve had all the same worries and thoughts you’ve had too, I think every blogger must do! I’m glad, and wouldn’t want to be, one of those bloggers who just post an obligatory comment under a blogpost such as,
“Woo!
Enter my competition below to win a free make up palette follow for follow?”
To me I don’t dislike bloggers who do that but I just can’t seem to relate to them in any way because I know all they care about is numbers. I love your blog Anna and like I said in my post alot of the blogs I return to again and again are the ones that don’t have alot of comments, granted some of fav blogs do get alot of comments but I think it all depends on what type of reader each blog attracts. When I look through your blog I feel as though I’m flicking through an online magazine which not alot of bloggers can achieve so please keep what you’re doing. Plus we’re only babies in the blogging world as yet, the big ones have been going for over five years, lets have this discussion then and see where we’re both at, I bet we’d both be pleasantly surprised xxx

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Caroline February 11, 2014 at 1:39 pm

It’s not often I can actually be arsed to read blog posts with lots of writing (yes, I am that lazy) but I read this one from start to finish and I thought it was a fab, refreshing read! I’ve not been on any blogging forums but I’m going to have a beak around the one you linked…I just can’t believe these rather bitter people actually spend time writing crap about other blogs rather than concentrating on what goes into their own. I bet they’re the same people who comment on the Daily Mail website (i.e. twats).

I feel that I’ve only recently found my own natural style. I think a lot of bloggers, me included, start out heavily influenced by more established blogs and try to emulate them. I finally feel that my blog is totally my own now – I write as I think and speak, I display it as I want and post the pictures that I think are interesting – not what I think others will like. I don’t compare myself to anyone else like I used to. When I see a blog that continually just posts photos of nail varnishes and eye creams and has 10,000 followers, I realise it doesn’t mean that much at the end of the day…

I have to admit, I do take part in the ‘Twitter Tarting’ as I like to call it – posting about my blog a few times per day – but I do it using Hootsuite….you can schedule posts a few times a day with minimal effort and it does help build traffic. I always assume most people won’t see it over and over as they log in at different times but if it does get annoying…ah well. Shit happens.

Lovely to have you back on the blogging scene! We missed you. Hopefully finally meet you for a cosmopolitan sometime soon.

Caroline x
Cocktails and Caroline

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Thiswomansstyle February 11, 2014 at 3:34 pm

Hey Caroline,
You and I am the same.lol I can never usually be arsed either so I was surprised that people read this! Don’t get me wrong I love looking at other peoples blogs but when it’s too wordy it usually scares me off! I think you and I started our blogs at similar times and I too initially started out by following the lead of some of the more well-known blogs but it’s nice when you finally find your own swing! Oh and with regards to the whole retweeting thing Alexandra from Myfroley just informed theres an automated app that retweets your blogposts for you so maybe I need to start doing this myself!
Enjoy LA you lucky thing and yes lets finally set a cocktail date for when you return! xx

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Christine February 11, 2014 at 4:51 pm

Holy crap this was eye opening. It’s pretty sad that people have to slag off what others do – there’s plenty of space on the internet for everyone! As a soon to be mummy I want to punch that comment author in the face. More than twice.

Great post! x

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Ashley February 13, 2014 at 7:01 pm

Love this post- some bloggers take themselves sooooo seriously. C’mon, just lighten up and have some FUN with it, right? :)

-Ashley
http://lestylorouge.com

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Ichraq February 15, 2014 at 11:19 pm

Some bloggers definitely think that they’re better than others for whatever reasons and i think it’s silly because blogging to me is a way of expressing oneself and therefore each blogger has a unique voice and style! and that website you’re talking about is really shocking, i’ve never heard of it before but i guess i shouldnt be surprised because that’s the internet! people anonymously judging each other! even though it’s really sad and everybody should be able to you know post whatever the heck they want without being slagged off!
anyhow i loved reading your post, I think you have a great writing style! and your articles never fail to make me smile and think about stuff at the same time which i think is kind of amazing! :)

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Meranda May 22, 2014 at 12:12 am

I really appreciate this post! I have to agree with all the other comments, that this post is refreshing. I looked at the site you listed, and I know for myself, I stopped following all the major blogs, and find myself drawn to the smaller blogs. Why? They seem more personal.

Just because someone wrote a book, doesn’t mean they are any better than the rest of us. To be honest, I have bought some real loser books from Amazon that were really costly. Anyone can publish these days. Quality is what counts.

Blogging is really an art. I know for myself, I am heading in a new direction for my sites, and find what has worked in the past, may not work in the future. (I have SO much more to learn) It really is an art and a skill, and one I have no where near mastered yet. Though I find that, (in my opinion) posts like this… true opinions is what people want to hear. Good or bad, ugly or pretty, the thoughts, off the cuff writing really wins in the end.

Huge Blessings to you my dear! Meranda~

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Thiswomansstyle May 31, 2014 at 10:22 am

What a lovely comment and how very true you are, it is an art! Thanks for stopping by xx

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cremaluisa June 3, 2014 at 1:34 pm

Hi Rebecca,
I couldn’t agree more with you. I also love blogging and don’t get a penny for it. I do it because I love it!, I am a Mum who works as a PA but loves cooking! so I blog about just because I want.
I love your blog! keep writing, and who knows maybe the hatters will write about us!.
Marisa.xx
http://www.cremaluisa.blogspot.co.uk

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