The criticism of blogging by the traditional media has led to our community having to defend the industry and prove that a career in blogging is just as viable as any other, but in doing so, we’ve created a self entitled, spoilt culture through over compensation. As someone who’s ran a blog for nearly a year, I fully appreciate that it involves more than just taking photos and writing for an hour a week and I 100% support all the women (and men) building business’ for themselves, but recently I’ve noticed a few comments that blow the difficulty of blogging way out of proportion, making it seem like blogging is is a lot harder than the regular 9-5 office, manual labour and retail jobs, which, if we’re honest, its really not. Comments like ‘Gosh I’m so tired all of this flying has tired me out’ after taking three business class all expenses paid trips in a month, and ‘I have such a busy schedule this week’ when it includes anyone else’s normal amount of working hours plus a few brunch meetings. I know this sounds like it comes from a place of jealousy, which I’ll admit, it partly does, but it mainly comes from a place of anger at the people who have the enormous privilege of working from home, doing something they love whilst getting paid a HUGE amount for it who still have the nerve to act as if bloggers work harder than everyone else. I recognise that problems are relative and of course bloggers still have the right to complain about the things they perceive to be hard in their life, but from an outsider’s perspective I have to admit- bloggers are becoming too spoilt.
The person who really triggered this thought for me was my Dad. For years he’s been saying people like Zoella need to ‘get a grip’ and ‘live in the real world’ and I relentlessly defended them and their careers, until last week when I saw him come home at 10pm every night after sixteen hours of back breaking work that still only affords him a modest lifestyle. Just last week Lydia Millen (who I have NOTHING against) rewarded herself with a Chanel handbag for making it through an all expenses paid business class trip to Australia- and of course she’s entitled to spend her money however she wants- but have we really got to the point where we believe completing a couple of months in a luxurious, privileged career is laborious enough to be rewarded with a bag worth thousands of pounds? If I’m being honest, I truly don’t believe blogging is any harder than an office job (and its DEFINITELY not harder than the thousands of manual labour jobs people, including my Dad, have to work) bloggers have just had to make it seem as such to counteract the people who say its easy.
Take monetising your blog for example- I’m actually of the unpopular opinion that starting a blog for money is fine- but I’ve also been watching YouTube and reading blogs long enough to remember the days where it was simply a hobby for people and any recognition from a brand was a bonus; nowadays its common practice to demand payment when a brand regrams you, and God forbid you’re asked to prove your worth through a trial post before a brand commits to working with you. For those of us who have to work traditional jobs, an unpaid trial is standard- last year I was made to work six hours unpaid washing dishes so the manager could see if I was ‘right for the job’ when they knew damn well anyone could wash dishes for minimum wage, but I didn’t kick up a fuss, I worked hard and did what I had to do. In the world of blogging, however, it seems you must be paid a premium wage for everything you do, and you must be paid it immediately too- no waiting until the end of the month to get paid like everybody else.
I’d like to make it clear that I FULLY support bloggers, but my frustration comes from the fact that some of them really do seem to have lost touch with what ‘hard work’ actually is, and the things people who work regular jobs have to put up with for a fraction of their wage. My plea to bloggers who are feeling sorry for themselves because they have jetlag and have been paid two weeks after they sent an invoice is to realise what a privileged position they’re in and to think about the millions of people who have to work so much harder than they do for so much less; the people who aren’t fortunate enough to be able to reward themselves with a Chanel bag or a holiday to the Maldives when they need a pick me up.