Over the past fortnight A LOT has been was written, posted, commented and shared about the role and responsibilities of a blogger in Pakistan. I guess it started with Samra Muslim’s Tips for PR companies, then a few others started talking about it on twitter, then on facebook groups and most recently a fellow blogger Haseeb wrote his heart out in an emotional take about fashion bloggers being mistreated in the industry.
I felt necessitated to write my response to these posts because I felt that my fellow blogger peers missed out on a few things. Lets start with my credentials, over the past 4 years I have been priviliged enough to have been on both sides of the pond, I was the water itself, the frogs, fish , trees everything at some point so to say. Social media folks at fashion events have truly democratized fashion,as for the role of bloggers particularly I am not too sure.
It is true to say that more often than not we as bloggers are unappreciated, not compensated enough, not respected this and that but over time working on the brand’s side and being an agency I have first hand experienced the greed and wannabe ness that also needs to be addressed. It is also a harsh reality that most bloggers rely on mostly ass kissing or less often ass kicking to get visitors/views and hence be popular.
Another fact being that besides 4 blogs, none of the fashion bloggers in Pakistan even have their domain let alone basic knowledge about how they can earn (legally from advertising etc.). Set aside putting an ad, SEO so on so forth.
Lastly, bloggers need to have a unique voice or a niche to cater to. If you don’t have a specialty, you cannot command attention let alone remuneration or even respect for the content if there is no exclusivity. Transparency is another issue. Even after being compensated and all do you actually write that you got a giveaway/money or even a meagre favour of invite.
Some folks like Pink 2.55, Umairica and others who I consider celebrity bloggers have shattered schemas by being awarded, featured in campaigns and what not. Original + Exclusive are the words. They did whatever they did, what are you going to do?
However, if you are there just to peacock around in fancy garb posting photos of events. Then its better that you start looking for daddy or an aunty for whom you can be a trophy wife or a arm candy husband. Blogging like most other hobbies is a thankless job, it might start as a “hobby” but it transforms into a JOB. And like most other words that contain the word “job” as a suffix, you encounter a lot of unexpected things. Your experiences shall be different from others,you will realise bigger is not always better if you know what I mean 😉
to finish off If you really think you need some brand or an agency’s approval to keep going then I guess you need a healthy dose of introspect
photo credits: Yvan Rodic, Facehunter