Unless you have been living under a rock for the last week, you are well aware of a post written by Josi Denise, directed at the mommy bloggers’ community. In fact, it has sparked great discussion amongst bloggers from all niches and has sent her post viral. Whether you are one of her backers or have taken offence to her words, you must accept that her post is in essence, her personal observations from her experiences as a formal mommy blogger.
I welcome Kimberly Montgomery to the blog today with her response:
Kimberly is a business owner and blogger at Fifty Jewels. When not schmoozing with her midlife girlfriends, you can find Kimberly hiking, kayaking or planning her next travel destination.
An Open Letter to Josi Denise
We don’t know each other. In fact, I’d never heard of you, or read your blog, until a couple days ago when a blogger friend told me about your post “Dear Mommy Blogger”.
I read it, and fundamentally agree with your message. I would expand it beyond the ‘Mommy Blogger’ niche to bloggers in any arena and suggest that a frequent ‘gut check’ would be a GOOD THING. What is your Mission Statement? Are your efforts in line with that Mission Statement? How successful have you been in moving towards that Mission Statement? What are your short term, medium term, and long term goals? (see, I just used the Oxford comma because I know you’re a fan!)
Where you lost me is when you lost yourself. When the finger wagging started. Right about here:
‘YOUR MOMMY BLOG FUCKING SUCKS’
Now, if you had said
‘MY MOMMY BLOG FUCKING SUCKS’
and went on to share a completely vulnerable, honest, open story about how you pimped yourself shamelessly by posting inauthentic reviews, following others on social media just for a follow in return – not because you found them interesting, hired a VA to link you up across the internet for endless backlinks, and FINALLY had a come to Jesus moment when you just couldn’t do it anymore, well, THAT would have been EPIC.
I would have loved a truly authentic voice about how it finally ended for you and how it came crashing down. How you felt, what made the shift in your mind, what you’ll do different now. When did your personal integrity become more important than the endless drive for more? Those are the important life lessons that need to be shared. As humans, we crave those core values.
The world is filled with billions of people, each given the gift of personal choice. And it is a gift. It’s not for anyone to tell another how to live their life. We can’t see inside their world, only they can. That’s just pointing the finger out so we don’t have to look at ourselves.
At any point in history you’ll find the lure of economic gain as a trigger for bad behavior. It’s not new. It’s a learning opportunity in life’s journey. Like loss, illness, tragedy, struggle — they’re all here to teach us lessons. The important part is that we learn from them.
You’ve had an interesting journey. I hope someday you share it from the heart.
Have you read Josi’s post? What did you think? If you wrote a post responding to her original post, please share the link in the comments.
I have another perspective. First of all I am brand spanking new at this…we’re talking newest of newbies and I haven’t conquered the learning curve yet. So I am not qualified to even offer an opinion on that rant. I visit your site for the tips and encouragement as I struggle to get through the learning curve. That said, I stumbled across this, and honestly Josi’s rant was discouraging to me to the point of questioning whether or not I am wasting MY time. My goal isn’t making money – right now it’s just a purpose at this awkward time of life. But is she right? Has blogging been diminished to just a marketing tool where people don’t bother with it unless they can gain something from it? I would like an honest assessment on that, as I’m only a week in, and it’s not too late for me to pull this plug before I invest any more time. I’m confused enough as it is.
Blogging, like anything else in life, is what you make of it. Yes, there are many bloggers that are in it just for the money but there are many, many more that are in it for the love of writing and connecting. Don’t be discouraged. Share your life and experiences and find other bloggers that share your same vision and you will find a supportive community that will become your online family. Good luck and please don’t give up.
I read that post, too, but am just now seeing Kimberly’s well-written reply. I have felt like Josi some days, asking “Why am I doing this? (just no #%^%$#). The comments I read here are from incredible bloggers, with whom I would rather spend my time reading. The rant could just have easily been from a blogger at any age–we have all had moments, days, months(?) of blogging frustration. But the best part for me? The friends I have made from all over the world and the connections with men and women who love to write. Is my blog going to go viral and I make $10K a month? He** NO. That’s not why I am here. I blog and read other’s blogs to add positivity to my life. Negative rants like that, whether or not they draw attention, turn me off. Thank you, Elena, for providing a forum for us wise midlife bloggers to react and share our POVs. And yet, after all of her ranting…we are still blogging.
I think everyone has those days, even in conventional jobs. I think it is great to discuss the issues but not sure her approach of trashing actual people was a great way to start a conversation about some of the problems with blogging. I absolutely love blogging and it would take a lot to get me to walk away but I think that is because my passion is not money, it is connecting, learning and teaching. As long as I have that, you will see me here.
There are several posts like these going viral about trying to pull back the Wizard of Oz-like curtain and give people a reality check on what is truly going on behind the scenes. I agree that when you take away the snark and look at the facts, many points are important for the general public (and bloggers) to know.
I look at this is the biggest of pictures as it relates to intention and how our words impact others. Marketers are spending a lot of money to try to get us to be something or do something and most of all to buy something and bloggers continue to be a great way to move the dial.
One of my latest mantras is “Don’t confuse authenticity with honesty” (which someone else alluded to above when mentioning bloggers personas) because in the online world, you never know where the persona ends and the real person begins.
Thank you for a great post, Kimberly.
It is always good to have an reality check, no matter what the genre or market. Questions and discussions keep us honest and on track. Thank you so much for your insight.
We can take ourselves and our blogs way too seriously – and think the whole world is waiting for our pearls of wisdom (when in fact they are skimming through and moving on to the next one half the time. She got a little bit over the top in my opinion but obviously something had pressed her button to write it the way she did.
Maybe she took her blog too seriously too and it got to her. Good point.
Thank you Elena for the link up and also for this insightful post from Kimberley. I agree we all need to step back occasionally and have a reality check not just in blogging. We need to ask ourselves Am I living my life as authentically as I can and not fall into the trap of comparing? We all have a voice but i agree I think this is a marketing strategy she has used and it works because we are all talking about it.
So obviously, it that was her plan. It worked. Maybe we should say, good for her?
Sadly, I think it was a vicious marketing ploy. I’ve never read her blog, with a 29 year old, blogs for young mothers really aren’t where I want to be right now. But it looks like she deleted her own “mommy blog” so that no one could reference back to it, then created a new blog that had no traffic. So how do you create traffic? By dropping a bomb. I will admit, I went to her new blog to find out what was going on and found a second post in which she continues to run over other bloggers, but has conveniently turned off her comments so that no one could respond. Perhaps another marketing ploy because if people cannot comment they will respond through their blogs and social media, all of which continue to drive traffic to her blog. Whether or not she raised any valid points is obscured by her “bad form” (to quote Captain Hook,) in laying out her case
I am starting to think that it was a marketing ploy as well. Sad really as I think the post raised some really good points.
I didn’t read her post but I heard about it. It seemed to me she was just being ugly and yes that does tend to go viral. It’s fine to have opinions but that was way more than that.
It is disappointing how ugly gets the views. I seen a few more today that I think are just for the sensationalism. It is really sad.
was a brilliant way to give herself some notoriety. I’m thinking about writing one about how dad bloggers suck just to see if I can get famous for a second or two
Lol. But they don’t right? Would be extremely interesting to see how that would go. You should do it!
You may be better off writing about how mentally ill people should die. That’s destroying everyone right now.
Great reply Kimberly! I read the rant and felt some of it hit at core truths. She lost me with her swearing. Don’t get me wrong, I swear like a truck driver. But not on paper. That’s forced. I love a good controversy but prefer a more civilized forum.
I don’t remember you swearing…much. But yes, I do love the discussion it has begun.
Thank you Elena, for the blog party and for sharing this by Kimberly. Popped over from #BlogShareLearn then again, I’m always glad when I get here. 🙂 As for sides, I like to see things from all angles. Josi Denise is trying to get attention, make a name, and it’s working. I think it’s up to each reader to decide what’s genuine or not, as with all things in life. 🙂
Very true Donna. Either way, I do think some points she made are valid and worth discussing. I love blogging and would hate for the true art to fade out to only those peddling product or services.
My favorite quote in that piece: “Genuine content, with a genuine voice, is the only way to gain real readers and connect with real people.”
She rants and, like Carol also says, a rant is a rant. But it brings up a point with which I’m struggling lately: blogging is marketing. Whether it was intended that way from the beginning or not, it has now become one piece of an overall marketing plan for countless freelancers/businesses/corporations … fitting right in there along with Facebook, Twitter, etc.
Yes, there are blogs that are simply about personal expression–a place to self-publish art and reflection simply for the joy and pleasure of the process and the resulting connections/conversations with others–and I find myself enjoying them the most. But if you’re writing a blog to build a business, let’s call a spade a spade: it’s marketing.
Is all marketing bad? Not necessarily, but it does present something of a challenge for both writer and reader. As a writer who wants to remain genuine, how do you do that when you have another motive (building a business)? It’s possible, but challenging — the numbers start to grow ever more important because, well, it’s business after all. As a reader, how do I determine what is genuine and what is not and, as I grow ever more cynical about the writer’s motives, how quickly will I disengage and go elsewhere, where I don’t have to read that way?
It is very difficult and I must admit that I do struggle at times with what my most truest intentions are. Even in real life there are many situations that we must “market” ourselves, whether we want to admit it or not. I think, like you pointed out, that readers can easily assess who is genuine and they can choose who they wish to read as well.
Since I don’t have kids I don’t read Mommy blogs but I saw her rant and have to say I thought it was food for thought. I paid no attention to her snarky tone, and drilled down into her criticisms, many of which I agreed with. If she’d written this generically it would not have sparked the conversations and thought it has. I have seen SCORES of comments on this woman’s post, many from blogs I have read and noticed that more than a few bloggers who are most up in arms may think it cuts to close to the bone. Her post provoked discussion and I love that part of it. A rant is a rant. Nothing PC about it.
Ah, you are a feisty one Miss Carol. I do love a good rant and yes, I agree, if it didn’t cut so close, people would not be so offended.
This new angle she’s chosen is obvious click bait and a very well designed campaign at that. My guess is it’s just about as authentic as her ‘perfect’ mommy blogger persona.
It is hard to know who is authentic these days.
I think it’s ideal to keep giving yourself a checkup about your mission and whether or not you’re achieving what you set out to do.
I don’t usually read “mommy” posts anymore since my son is older but this post I read. I think this girl needs a reality check before she starts wagging her finger at others. There’s a right and a wrong way for everything I, for the most part, I think how she went about writing her post the wrong way. Where’s the humanity in her?
Check-ups and change are good. I think many bloggers do feel as she does but were turned off by her approach. It is what it is but what a great discussion it has created.
I love Kimberley’s post – I agreed with Josi on some points but felt, like Kimberley, that the tirade should’ve been more geared towards her own blog & why she changed tact than upsetting tons of mommy blogs who do not think their blogs suck. Sure, I’ve come across blogs in all genres which I’ve thought “OMG what shite” even though they have tons of followers; I’m sure not everybody likes my blog. At the end of the day, each person’s blog is their domain to run it how they see fit… if you don’t like, don’t read & move on. Life is way too short! ?
That is a very good way to look at it. Thank you!
I think this is true in every community…not just the blogging zone! Doesn’t every individual, in every occupation need to go through this gut check? Are you still being ethical and doing things for the right reasons?
I think living this way makes it much easier to sleep at night—and it’s only human to stray occasionally!!
At least when you stray in fashion, it’s just a miss and not life or death, right?
thanks for hosting this again!!
I think it happens in every medium and in our lives as well, yes. There will always be an internal struggle whether we are selling out or staying true to our mission. It is up to all of us to decide individually.