Posted Jun 16, 2011 in About Last Night, For Both | 4 Comments

Why so Much Hate Towards Fashion Blogs and Bloggers?

In recent months, fashion bloggers have been the target of many unscrupulous attacks. Those attacks are directed towards the integrity, relevance and importance of bloggers and their choices of editorial positioning. Critics coming from all perspective; from fashion “journalists” and editorialists to designers and brand managers to the average Joe Blow, everyone seems to have an opinion on this matter.

Fashion journalists and editorialists seem to be questioning the relevance of fashion bloggers. What does a regular fashion lover who does not work in the industry possibly have to say about fashion, cuts, colors, fabrics, trends etc? How can that regular person who goes and buys the items designers create possibly have an opinion on collections? Why should that person who keeps the industry rolling have a voice?  How can they judge if they’ve never studied the art?

As you may know, I work in the industry as a designer here in Montreal. But I also write a fashion blog. Does it make it ok for me to write my opinions because I have the background coveted? Will I be taken more seriously than anyone else? Can I join the elite because of that? Many fashion bloggers from here that I have met through my blogging journey have a very relevant background, not necessarily in fashion (although a lot are in the industry as well), are smart, educated and opinionated. Their takes are fresh, new and more in tune with the evolution of our society. I, as a designer, am more inclined to hear their perspectives than the ones coming from more “venerable” but outdated critics whose repetitive, preferential and stalled opinions haven’t’ evolved with the change of time.

Others critic the integrity of fashion bloggers for reasons that are truly absurd. Yes, many times, bloggers receive free gifts to sample.  Yes, they get invited to events, enjoy free cocktails and shrimps, dance to music, have a few drinks, and receive goodie bags. Yes, bloggers will choose to talk about those events and the gifts they received or not. This is called marketing people. I don’t get the uproar over this and questioning people’s integrities is kind of tacky. Many movie stars, who make millions of dollars, receive many free and much more expansive gifts, which they could all afford by the way, yet we never critique them. Many of them get paid for appearances to events. Yet that’s ok.

Many journalists get free samples and are invited to the same events for the same reasons, yet that’s ok too. But when bloggers, who make zilch off their hard work, time and contribution, write posts on their own blog, they get ostracized for it. Brands invite them for a reason. Free publicity! Its marketing 101; get with the program!

So I ask again, why so much hate towards Fashion blogs and bloggers?

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  1. I guess the reason the professional industry is all up in arms about bloggers is because with the benefit of the Internet, they went through a shortcut from unknown to invited guests at fashion shows. There was no interning, few refusals, doesn’t take too much to set up a blog, and just as much privilege as a seasoned journalist. Of course they’ll be mad. Even I found it deceptively easy to enter the industry without any background or experience. I’m still waiting to be called out upon for not having enough experience to write about it. I think professionals think that bloggers have not paid their dues yet to deserve to be recognized in this industry. It’s still relatively new and they’re still dependent on big news media to validate their existence or rely on them for content. Not to say blogs aren’t relevant, but in sheer numbers 1 million blogs (most of which are crap) compared to a handful of more cohesive media groups, do not make for better quality content. After all, pros are called for a reason, they know what works, they know how to write to a specific audience and they’re able to bring advertising money. As a reader of blogs, I don’t have time to sift through thousands of blogs, so I only rely on what I think are the very best. I was a blogger as well, but I also understand the critics and their POVs. Bloggers need to evolve past the free marketing press and start generating better content.

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  2. You bring a very good point Dahlia. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Blogging is still at its infant stage, much like social medias were 3 years ago.

    Setting up a blog is so easy, everyone with or without academic or business experience can join the bandwagon (if only for a season), which makes it hard to take the new field seriously.

    But just like everything else, it has a chance to evolve, in a new powerful and media genre, and transcend the amateur stage that makes professional cringe with reason today.

    This will only be possible if Bloggers take the necessary steps to establish themselves as professionals, with all that it implies. There is a long way to go and it will be interesting to see where we take things from here.

  4. How do you all suggest one become a professional if not in the field? I have bills to pay at the end of the day so I can’t quit my job and intern at Vogue for free? Do you believe a degree is necessary or is it based on experience? And please elaborate when you say provide better content…

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