There’s been an awful lot of jibber-jabber about bloggers recently. Newspaper journalists have been pondering their influence. Bloggers have been getting uppity about newspaper journalists pondering their influence. There has been much debate about “labelling” or “condescending” by categorising certain types of bloggers ”mummy bloggers”. And yesterday, a playwright called Christine Croyden gave her two-cents worth in The Age, with “I Blog, Therefore I Am”. The article suggesting bloggers take a long, hard look at why they’re blathering in a public space and write a memoir instead.
I quite like blathering in a public space. It gets things off my chest.
So I’ll start with the influence of bloggers. I’d like to know why, when they go to PR launches and such, they use their Twitter feeds as propaganda tools for the product they were invited to peruse. Is it a requirement of attendance that at least 10 Tweets be sent during the function that referred to the said product?
No, really, I’m curious. I don’t get invited to PR launches so I’m not privvy to the deals that are done. I’d like to know what to expect should my blog ever become influential enough for me to score an invite to something.
As a former journalist I’ll probably be accused of being bitter and jealous when I say I find it a bit icky. And not just when bloggers do it. Neil Patrick Harris’s sponsored tweets make me feel a bit unclean too.
Is there some unspoken rule that while you’d never sully your blog by raving about the “goodification” of KFC, Twitter is an anything-goes environment?
As for “mummy blogger” being a label, I’m a bit mystified as to why it gets everyone so agitated. Being a “parenting blogger” sounds a bit dullsville in my books, not quite the same ring. Same goes for ”chick lit” being a dirty word. I’d love to write something categorised as “chick lit”. I dream about writing something categorised as “great chick lit”, especially if it made me loads of money.
Maybe that’s just me. I can be a bit clueless sometimes. Happy to have the slur explained.
Finally, there’s Christine Cooper. Christine Cooper says: “My wish is that before bloggers decide to post another word, they read a few good books, think about what it is they want to say, wonder for a while about how often it’s been said before, and, once they realise it’s been said in many more insightful ways on numerous occasions they go to bed and forget about ’their blog’.”
What I’d say to Christine Cooper if I met her at a party and we started having a stoush (a bit like when I was working at Cosmo magazine and sparred in a bar with Paul McDermott about women’s magazines, without the sexual tension) is: “What if I told you to forget about being a playwright because plays bore me to tears?”
God I hate plays. Pretentiously boring wastes of time that fail more often than they succeed (going on Husband’s late-night reviews of the ones he sees without me). But it’s not about what I want, is it? Loads of people love plays, so me not being into them doesn’t mean playwrights should stop.
Christine doesn’t get that. She doesn’t get blogs either.
Blogging is about personal expression. It’s about democratisation of creativity. Why should bloggers shut up just because Christine thinks they’re not polished or insightful? If someone wants to write a blog, no matter how poorly constructed it might be, let them. If you don’t want to read it, don’t. It’s not like anyone’s shoving their blog down your throat. (Well, I do share mine on Facebook… ) Christine took the time to seek blogs out and be intellectually offended by them.
Why should a blogger read ”a few good books” before they post another word? What have books got to do with it?
Blogs are blogs. Books are books. Plays are plays. Each to their own.
Don’t you think?