As I was thinking about what to write about after some time of not writing, it hit me. I’ll write about why I haven’t been writing.
For some time I’d been rather disappointed, to put it mildly, that readership was down and that opportunities for reviews and other programs were dwindling to nothing. I’d brought this to the attention of the powers that be and even pointed out that there’d been some review campaigns I was very well qualified for, but yet I never seemed to be chosen to participate. This added to my discouragement and my scaling back on writing. Since I was already disheartened by this, imagine my surprise and dismay to one day be told that my blog’s ad stream participation was being cancelled. Apparently, due to my writing less, BlogHer decided to remove me from the publishing network (with no advance warning.) Though I am technically still a member of BlogHer and display their tune-in bar across my site, I no longer have the ad strip running alongside as I did for years.
So let me explain why this bothers me, beyond the obvious reasons. I’d already been making it known that I’d certainly like more review opportunities and yet was getting less and less. I’d also had my blog posts featured less and less. I’d taken survey opportunities as well as other opportunities to let BlogHer know that I felt that as a network of and for women bloggers (which I think is great, by the way) I’d certainly like to see more help in the area of boosting up the “little bloggers” instead of just focusing on the “big” ones. I’d mentioned that some sort of network effort to point out and promote “The Best Blogs you’re not yet reading” type of campaign would be very helpful to members. Of course, nothing ever came of this and in a “kick me when I’m already down” move, I was taken off the publishing network. Yes, I am complaining. Yes, I’m also aware that BlogHer may simply remove me altogether for doing so, and if that is what they feel they’d like to do I won’t argue. I simply can’t stress about it. But I find it very unfortunate that, similar to other injustices in life, apparently even with this blogging network it is all a popularity contest and if you aren’t one of the biggest, best, most popular you’re simply out of luck. It’s equally unfortunate that the rules are not required to be followed by those who are popular since it’s been noted by many others that some bloggers are allowed to break the rules (such as having comments open on their blogs) simply because they are “popular.” So, it’s ok for a “famous” blogger to deny readers the ability to comment, but for those of us not-so-famous, when we don’t follow the rules or write less we’re taken off the network. Really not cool.
In general (not just in blogging), I’m not one to be “popular” and I’m ok with that. I’ve made my peace with it now. In high school I didn’t smoke cigarettes or pot and so I wasn’t “popular”. In my first real job, I didn’t hang out with the “in” crowd or have the latest fashions…so I was not popular. In fact, when it came time for a promotion which I was well qualified for, I was passed over and guess who it went to? The popular girl.
I’ve always been a non-conformist and definitely march to the beat of my own drum. I’ve never been one to go along with the masses and I believe in speaking up for what I believe in (qualities that made me a great Mormon…not!) It does irritate me that so many things in life come down to a popularity contest; whoever has the most money or the loudest voice or is just plain popular. I guess the “little blogger” in me feels like I need to stand up for all the little guys and little gals in life. I just wish more people would look beyond the popularity.
the “little blogger” who could