I found this in my drafts folder this morning and I'm not entirely sure why I never published it. I originally wrote this back in July of 2009, when "Blogging with Integrity" was a really hot topic. Either I'm really late to the game on this one or I'm really ahead of the next curve. Let's go with the latter, mmm-kay?
I think the concept of blogging with integrity is great. I mean, don't write shit.
But I think there's been entirely waaay too much discussion about it all. (And I fully realize I'm contributing to the problem by penning this ode while slightly buzzed on my front porch...my tipsy condition amplified by the fact that my children aren't home and therefore actual THOUGHTS can be formed inside my brain without being interrupted by questions such as, "Mom, is kitty going to DIE?!?")
Yes, I feel like I blog with integrity. I write my true feelings about life in general and while I've accepted a promotional item a time or two and even written reviews for that meager compensation, I will only ever give my honest and true opinions on those products. (Whether or not I make them seem like product reviews is another thing. But then again I typically only get products like canned tomatoes pushed across the proverbial desk at me.)
I don't think we need to place a disclaimer at the start of each post:
WARNING: This post sponsored by the gas that Kraft Mac n Cheese has given me, free of charge this afternoon!
BEWARE: Someone gave me an item that's worth $1.89 to try out, and while I really like it, I was given that $1.89 item, so read with caution.
People - whether you have already realized it or not, the reason that companies like Mom bloggers is because
A) Moms make most of the buying decisions in the household and
B) A blog is a media outlet (large, small or otherwise)
C) Our regular readers trust us.
There is an insane amount of value in that equation.
Basically? Don't blow it.
At the same time, isn't everyone's dream to be paid to do what they love? Imagine, if you will, that you're offered this dream job. Its everything you want - flexible hours, no boring office chatter, etc. But there's no pay in it. Would you still do it?
But let's say all of your friends work there. And they make you feel sane. And you get an amazing sense of comeraderie out of the experience AND you can still do all the things you want to do with your kids every day.
Holy freakin' TRIPLE WIN batman.
So who's it going to kill if you're compensated for that time? (And for all the magic power you hold - "BWAHAHAHA! I am MOTHER! FEAR ME!!! Or at least listen to me when I tell you to throw your clothes in the hamper.")
I'm sure you see I have ads on my blog. I get paid for those ads. Period. Done. I really have no tie to the products being advertised, they simply foot the (small) bill for me to write.
I will also continue to accept products for review. While I don't want to dilute the oh-so-deep thoughts I share on this blog, free shit is fun. Who doesn't like free crap? But if you come to me with some ridiculous product that I've never heard of or something I'm really not interested in? I probably won't waste my time on it. Just sayin'. And if I don't like it? Or I'm just not really that impressed with it? I will tell you so, and not waste my readers' time. (I got a sample of a cleaning product a few months ago and initially felt really bad about not being too impressed with it. Then I realized that was stupid. It was made to clean stuff and I already had products that do that. I emailed the PR rep and simply told her so - guilt absolved.)
SO...I may not print out, in large black letters at the top of a post that I'm doing a review, or that I've been paid to write something -- I assume that you're all big boys and girls and now that I've edumicated you about the reasons that bloggers are powerful you'll know you can safely assume someone just may very well have compensated me for my writing prowess - I mean time.
But mostly I'll continue to write crap.