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Boo, you whore: Twitter chats, Guru Gossip, and The Bloggers We Love Tag

guru gossip bloggers
I’ve had a post like this germinating in my mind for a while now, steadily taking shape as I have become more involved with the social networking side of blogging. At times I have wondered whether it would be well received, or simply exacerbate matters; but I think now, in light of all this drama that has been going on lately, some things need to be said, and ideas need to be challenged. I’m sure there’ll be many of you that disagree with me, and that’s fine. If you came here to see a list, then scroll to the bottom. There you will find some names of people who have helped me along my blogging journey and who deserve credit, love, and thanks. But first, let’s talk about hate.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, due to the GuruGossip scandal. I won’t dwell on it too much, because it was a fucking boring shit-storm to say the least, and I’m sure we’re all sick of hearing about it. I will say that there was a lot of baying for blood. Loads of people wanted the bloggers who made those comments named and shamed, or even prosecuted. People started attacking each other, making accusations. People took sides.  Almost everyone wanted to know who they were so that they could unfollow them. To be honest, this attitude did remind me more of that scene in Mean Girls when the Burn Book is photocopied and thrown up into the air then it did of a community of creative adults; but, in reaction to this blogger-on-blogger hate, a new hashtag was born, #bloggerswelove, which started trending on Tuesday night. My notifications were flooded with mentions from some of the loveliest people I have been privileged to meet in my entire life. There may be no team spirit, but there are some truly beautiful individuals.

When I talk to non-bloggers about my online life, I often get the feeling that people want to hear that blogging is a giant cat-fight full of snobby wannabe-models; it would satisfy their misogyny and help them reduce what is, proportionally speaking, a female territory, down to a mud-slinging between hot fashionistas; but this assumption is just as naive as the uber-positive cupcakes-and-cat-face-ballet-pumps blogging bubble, and here’s why: Men do not ever get derided for not ‘sticking together’ or being helpful, or being modest. Male industries do not get dismissed as trivial when the men within them cannot agree, or create a blissfully supportive community. Those things are expected of women, and so they are expected of us as bloggers. We should not expect them from ourselves, or each other. To expect a collective of millions of women 9 and men) to all get along and play nice is a double-standard that we should not force on ourselves. We are already winning just by making friends, and finding a place to be seen and acknowledged for our talents. There is jealousy, sure. There is a lot of politics, as there is in any creative industry. That does not condemn us, or our community.

I take part in a lot of twitter chats. When the most popular chats come around of an evening, my timeline is always flooded with girls discussing their summer favourites or their dream cameras. They can be competitive places; full of women who want to make blogging their job, and those with less long-term  (but equally as self-promotional) reasons - getting more followers, more retweets, more hits. Advice, blogging ‘rules’ and other sage wisdoms are batted around a lot. There are cliques. But there is also plenty of calling-out of these things – girls who haven’t failed to notice the bitching and the preaching and the massive egos, who want to spread encouragement and kindness. There are some who do not even see the bad, and talk about the amazing, supportive parts of blogging  as if it were the last bastion of sisterhood. I think there are also a good few who don’t want to acknowledge the bitchiness for fear of reinforcing negative stereotypes about how women interact with one another. I include myself in that camp. That being said, the SocialBloggers (#socialbloggers) chat, run by my friend Corinne from SkinnedCarTree, is overwhelmingly positive; StudentBloggers (#sbloggers), founded by Charley is another great one. But if I see a topic such as ‘the importance of stats’ or ‘working with brands’ on one of the larger chats, I tend to smell bullshit pretty quick, and steer clear. To me that is just common sense, because I don’t want that kind of competitiveness to control how I blog. It is up to each of us to decide what media we consume; what we listen to, what we surround ourselves with. I don’t want to be that girl, tweeting at a frenemy over something she may or may not have said about my tits on a chat forum.

I enjoy interacting with other bloggers, even if it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll ever visit mine in return. I like swapping tips and knowing I’m not alone in this solitary hobby/job/vocation/lifestyle/obsession. On the whole, I think we’re a lovely bunch, who just want to share our thoughts, feelings and lives with people who share the same passions; people who will listen. We can never expect love and support in this community, or take it for granted. But we can choose to give it. What you focus on, grows. I tag everyone reading this to make a similar list to the one I’ve made – 15 bloggers that you want to thank, or show your appreciation. Because this is the only kind of list I want to see.

BLOGGERS WE LOVE
I would like to thank, in no particular order:
Stephanie from Faiint, for making time to help me with a geeky coding question
Katie from The Gravity and She, for her awesome musical suggestions and adorable comments
Amy from Everything & Amy, for her friendship and support
Maija from The Sequined World, for being a mini Kate Bush
Katie from Whips And Furs, for being such a beautiful model
Charlotte from Step Into My Closet, for the above reason, and also for making me laugh more than I have in ages
Tori from Tori's Tales, for her constant love and support on Twitter
Peet from For Peet's Sake, just for being herself
Elif from Chamomile Dealer, for being my blogging soul sister
Laila from Tape Parade, for being badass
Claire from Dainty Ghosts, for being such a ball of light and positivity
Carrie from Carrie:Brighton, for being the girl I turn to for make-up tips
Emma, from Tightrope To The Sun, for her beautiful writing that always inspires me
Nancy from The Nancy Wilde Experience, for being a fellow Lolita
Megan from The Big Megowski, for getting my sense of Twitter humour

Labels: , , ,

15 Comments:

At 16 May 2014 at 15:22 , Blogger Megan M said...

I've been so confused by this GuruGossip business. Having never heard of the site before, I'm trying to catch up a bit. I find the blogger world is one extreme or the other. Either feigning love or just a newsfeed full of snide indirect tweets.

I could rant about this all day so I decided rather than spam your comment section, I'll save it for my blogger love post.

Wonderfully written as always!

x

 
At 16 May 2014 at 15:36 , Blogger FAIIINT said...

This is such a nice, refreshing post! I'll do one myself soon when I've had a good think!
I completely agree too, yes there is definitely a little bitchiness & some not so nice people, but you get that everywhere and as a whole I find the community to be really positive & full of lovely people, I've made some amazing friends through blogging that I'd never have met otherwise. It always makes me feel so privileged that we live in an age where we're able to connect with other like-minded people no matter where in the world they are.
No problem on helping out either, I always try to make time to help others if I can & especially other bloggers, it's important for building a strong community I think! :)

 
At 16 May 2014 at 16:13 , OpenID tapeparade said...

Heyyy Holly, firstly thanks so much for the mention! I'm such a fan of your blog so I'm totally chuff ties to see my name in this amazing list. I actually try really hard to steer clear of the whole blogosphere - I write my blog, I read some other blogs, I tweet and comment to the people whose blogs I read and that's it. I have never heard of Gurugossip so I don't know what you're referencing there and I took part in a few chats last year and then realised I had no idea what was going on and didn't really feel like I could relate to anybody. Blogging is a weird world, that's for sure… at the end of the day we are all just people at screens and I like to think if our screens we're closer together we'd all be hugging it out down the pub, in lieu of that, hashtagging the hell out of each will suffice. XXX

 
At 16 May 2014 at 17:39 , Blogger Maija said...

This is so sweet holly! You articulated perfectly how i feel about the whole matter too, blogging is weird, i always feel so self-concious when i tell a non-blogger that i blog... Anyway thank you! I'm so glad to be included on this list of lovely inspiring bloggers xxxxx

 
At 16 May 2014 at 18:17 , Blogger Elif Onay said...

Holly this is amazing. I loved all your thoughts and I totally agree with you on every bit even if we might have our slight differences as everyone can't be the same. I haven't heard about the gossipy thing until you mentioned it and of course the researcher in me had to go and find out (duh) and I could not believe my eyes. How did it ever come to that? Truly shocking but not really because well... humans. Why can't everyone just be nice though, right? :) Thank you so much for mentioning me on here. You are so FRIGGEN AWESOME, LIKE THE BESTEST HEY SISTA SOUL SISTA IN TOWN.

Chamomile Dealer

 
At 16 May 2014 at 18:53 , Blogger Katie said...

I always feel a little bit bad because although I'm an avid commenter and love to communicate with lots of bloggers via their posts, I'm not so good at using other forms of social media... I only really tweet to promote posts, it's just I have a personal twitter and instagram for my own 'life' away from blogging (maybe one day I'll merge them together, I'm just too nervous right now to let people I know from 'real life' {inverted commas because the internet is just as real} know about my blog) and it's just too much to tweet and 'gram on both haha. I also try and get across my personality through my posts and my comments, so hopefully I don't seem too distant?
But I guess one thing that's good about staying away from the social side of blogging is that I only ever see the good bits. Never the drama, though blogging definitely isn't one big catfight. Ugh, Lookbook.nu made this webseries about blogging/lookbooking and it was so weird... Like gossip girl kind of, making it seem like it's all about money and fame and being thin, which isn't true at all.
Anyway, this post was excellent, I love reading what you have to say alwaaays. Thank you for mentioning me, I'm gonna do a round-up post with aaaaall my blogging friendz soon, so look out for that ehehe. Glad you enjoy my music recommendations, I've bonded with so many people irl about music so it's cool that my online friends appreciate too :) haha.
Ok this was a super long comment I've had 2 coffeees and 2 g&ts within the space of 30 minutes whoops.
<3 <3 <3

 
At 16 May 2014 at 22:21 , Blogger Laura. said...

What a lovely positive post :)

And I just found a new favourite blog ! <3

 
At 17 May 2014 at 00:52 , Blogger Corinne said...

Eh, I have no idea what this drama is about - I've never heard of Gossip Guru before, but if you could shoot me a quick e-mail or a link so I can see what it's about, I'd appreciate it. Because I'm nosey like that.

I've heard about some of the Sunday night chats becoming a bit mean. It's pity because they can be fun. I love #socialbloggers because it's quiet enough to keep up and fast enough to not get bored and everyone just seems to get along - thanks for the mention!

I don't really tolerate internet arguments. Nobody even wins in online fights, everyone just likes like a dick. I can take a bit of constructive criticism but bitchiness or bullying is just ignored because I honestly don't have time to waste my energy thinking about it or responding to it.

Corinne x

 
At 17 May 2014 at 20:12 , Blogger Carrie said...

You gorgeous woman, you've just completely made my weekend. The whole gossip thing has got fairly ridiculous, I feel like I've been transported back to secondary school, and honestly, I thought we'd all grown out of this many years ago. The blogger love coming out of it has been fantastic though, which hopefully we will see a whole lot more of the latter and less of the former. Thank you so much for featuring me, you're an absolute sweetie!
Carrie xx

carriebrighton

 
At 18 May 2014 at 07:00 , Blogger Gail J said...

I love your words like so much! Sometimes, social media can be a great place for people to brag themselves, also compete in one another! I enjoyed reading it!

 
At 18 May 2014 at 14:04 , Blogger Sara Chergui said...

That was a very nice blog post ! I like sharing with other bloggers too ! :)
I have a Summer giveaway on my blog, get the Bronze Queen look !
http://thecrimeofashion.blogspot.fr

 
At 18 May 2014 at 22:54 , Blogger Emma Jane said...

It's exactly what Maija said above. When I tell a non blogger that I blog, I shy away from it. I'm so damn proud of my blog and my blogger friends but it's hard to make sense of that outside of its own world. But the solidarity I feel inside of the world is strong, even when a few assholes run around and try to make it horrid. Luckily the little group I've built for myself is phenom. Thank you for including me in this, lovely :) I adore you.

Em
Tightrope to the Sun

 
At 19 May 2014 at 09:39 , Blogger Peet said...

"We are already winning just by making friends..." That's my favorite line. And the other one is: "To me that is just common sense, because I don’t want that kind of competitiveness to control how I blog." I completely agree with both of these quotes and with everything else basically. And, babe, you can't imagine how happy it made me when I saw my name on the list - THANK YOU. I feel like saying 'I'm honored' is such a cliché but it's one billion percent true...

Happy Monday, you gorgeous genius woman.
xoxo

 
At 19 May 2014 at 14:01 , Blogger Isabella said...

Holly, I really adored this post. I absolutely agree with everything you said, the expectation and assumption that women based communities will always be fight free and happy and lacking competition is such a closed minded misogynistic. As you said, there is always going to be jealousy and complexities and support isn't something we stake for granted and yet despite that, the bloggosphere somehow manages to be (for the most part) a really supportive environment.
Bella xx
http://sincerelyisabella.blogspot.com.au/

 
At 4 June 2014 at 17:55 , Blogger amy said...

I don't really know what to say but I love this post. And thankyou for including me in your list, you're one of my favourite bloggers right from the beginning. I just love and always seem to agree with how you think!! xxx

 

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