Forgive me folks, but you are about to see what it looks like when I get on a soap box. It rarely happens here, so enjoy it (or hate it), because it will be a while before you see me get hot and bothered about anything other than my family, food, or fashion.
I am tired and feeling a bit pissy, and well, a topic got me a little worked up tonight.
I read this tweet this morning (it was retweeted by someone I follow), and it just sort of rubbed me the wrong way all day: "I kinda feel bad for the bloggers that will host any giveaway that's offered to them. Who knew integrity was out of style?"
Dude, get off your high horse is my first gut reaction.
Blogs are the personal property of the author, and therefore it is strictly within their right to host a giveaway, sell ad space and accept sponsors. Bloggers that are good enough to attract giveaways work damn hard. The writing, the picture taking, the photo editing, and on and on. For some it is a full time job, for others like me, it is a late into the night part-time job. If a blogger decides to host a giveaway to attract followers and traffic, that is their choice. Their personal choice, their business and no one else. Does it devalue them to accept any giveaway on the block? Who knows, and really, who the F cares? (Sorry, did you not know that I have a tendency to late night cursing? I was raised by a truck driver, I lay all the blame on my father). I do know that it is a waste of time worrying about what every other blogger on the block is doing instead of minding your own P's and Q's.
I was approached by Whole Foods recently to tour their new store before it opened to the public, and it included a $10 gift card giveaway to my readers. Honestly, I thought to myself, "Really? $10? What the heck can you buy at Whole Foods for $10?" In a way it was insulting, but I relegated it to the fact that their contracted PR gal just didn't know what she was doing (coincidentally, Whole Foods contracted out the same PR firm I interned at when I was a college; thank GOD I didn't land up in PR). I knew I could have pushed for more, but I didn't. I hosted a $25 giveaway to Whole Foods anyhow because it was a great tie in with this guest post, and I think the store is great. And you know what, I paid for the giveaway myself. Stupid? Maybe. But based off of principal? Absolutely.
The thing is though, that was my decision and my decision alone. I'm sure the blog mafia would claim I am selling my soul, but at the end of the day I don't regret the decision and that's what matters most.
On Sponsorships and Advertising:
I remember this post from Making It Lovely, where Nicole announced that she was working with AMEX rewards to redo her bedroom. 81 comments later, and the topic of the post had been somewhat lost because a debate ensued on whether she was a sell-out for accepting such corporate sponsorship. Can I just be honest here and state the obvious? Jealous much? It's the only thing I can think of. If I was offered 300k membership rewards points to use on redoing my master bedroom, you bet your bottom dollar I'd jump at that. And I bet 99% of people would. It's either extreme jealousy or extreme elitism that would prompt a person to have such a visceral reaction to a sponsorship.
Oh and don't even get me started on those uppity blogs that proudly display the "Ad Free Blog" logo. Puh-lease
On Corporate Endorsements/Write-Ups:
Most recently there was this whole controversy involving High Fructose Corn Syrup which you can read about here and here. Basically, some bloggers got all worked up because some other bloggers got paid in gift certificates to attend a conference hosted by the corn refiners association. If you haven't heard, they are lobbying to change the name of HFCS to corn sugar. There's a whole list of reasons why some got worked up, including devaluing themselves by accepting gift certificates vs. actual money. And of course the fact that a blogger would work for "The Man" and possibly persuade helpless women to converge to the dark side and believe it's perfectly fine to give their children HFCS. You know what, that view is insulting. Insulting to women and insulting to women that read blogs. That view assumes that a reader would make a decision off of reading one single post, instead of doing their due diligence and researching the topic. It's assuming that only the lowest common denominator are trolling blogs looking for answers. I'm not going to make a decision on what I feed my children based off a blog post. And if I do, then I've got bigger issues than just what I'm feeding my children.
And in regards to accepting GC vs. cold hard cash? Really, what's the difference? That to me, is a scarier topic than the debate itself. It's like saying, "Sure, sell your soul to the devil. Just make sure you get cash instead of a Macy's gift card when you do it". Really folks?
I swear when I read this crap it makes me feel like gossip has just spread from the school yard to the internet. Really people, we're not in high school anymore. Let's just all mind our own business and everything will be just fine.
Geez, I need to go to bed before my head implodes.
This has been a post brought to you by a sleep deprived and obviously hormonal mom.
p.s. I am happy to read any comments, including those that show me the point that I may be missing. Because I'm obviously missing something here...