Why do bloggers think that they are being exploited?
I read something the other day which I have to say annoyed me. The post was titled "how bloggers are being exploited". I generally think I'm quite an open minded person so I read on. I have to say it irritated me slightly. It was a very one sided view of how blogger's graft for cheap freebies.
There are more than 250 million blogs and that is just on Wordpress and Tumblr. Anyone can start a blog, In the past if you wanted to be a journalist you had to have a degree in English, experience and to actually write for one of the top newspapers/magazines you had to not only be top of your game, but also be very lucky. What do you need to start a blog? A laptop, camera maybe and a desire to write.
Everyone starts a blog for their own reasons. Some find it good therapy, almost like an on line diary. For others it is great experience towards a career in journalism. For the majority it is just a fab hobby with quite a few perks. There are others of course who want to turn it into a business. For me, it was initially to promote my website, but then it grew to an amazing hobby which was so creative and inspired me to want to write more, meet more bloggers and want to get better at what I was doing. Any reason to start a blog is impressive. There is no doubt that it is a time consuming "hobby" which takes a huge amount of time, dedication and enthusiasm. I therefore understand why bloggers like to see a monetary reward, whether that be in the shape of "free" goods, sponsorship or any other form of "reward",, this is totally just. However, this is something we choose to do. No one forces us to blog. There are no working hours, rules nor regulations. So how can bloggers complain that they are being exploited? There is a simple answer to this. If you don't want to do it, DON'T! No one is forcing you. This is YOUR choice.
I feel that I can fairly talk about this topic as I am both a blogger who is "PR friendly" and reviews products, but also I have a clothes website and offer goods to bloggers to review. There is no doubt that bloggers have a massive impact on the on line popularity of a product and Google ranking, but if any one blogger thinks that they are going to make a massive impact, they are wrong.
I know how much effort goes into reviewing a product. It's not just the write up, but the photos, the editing, the whole shabang. I know, I have done it, hours and hours and at the end what have you got to show for it? A lipstick? That doesn't cover anywhere near minimum wage, so why do it? The reason you started your blog in the first place.
Some bloggers are loosing sight of why they started their blog. If you feel that you are being exploited and companies are taking advantage of you, take a reality check. If you don't want to do it, there are hundreds of millions (literally) of bloggers who will. Be grateful that you are not only doing something that you enjoy, but you are also getting paid to do it.