Dear Diary: Negativity In The Bloggersphere

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When I think of the bloggersphere, I think of Twitter. I think of groups of sassy twenty-something gals engaging in scheduled chats with each other. I think of them liking my tweets or helping me with a tech question because WHY HAS MY LAPTOP BROKEN. I think of happy people. I think of women who lift each other up, support each other, give credit where credit is due. I think of people who make me feel less lonely when I’m working from home. I think of people who make this whole living online thing a whole lot friendlier and smilier and chipper. I think of good people.

And I like this idea of the bloggesphere. I like this idea that we are all championing each other and virtually throwing fist pumps. Because y’know, girl power is pretty blinkin’ ace.

But recently, well, recently things seems a little bit sadder. A little bit more negative. A little less sunny.

I’ve seen vague and ambiguous tweets thrown in every direction. Throwing ‘shade’ as the kids are calling it, without naming names.

And y’know what? I’m throwing my hand up and saying I personally feel victimised by Regina George.

YUP.

Regina George being the name given to random bursts of I HATE IT WHEN BLOGGERS DO BLAH.

When you tweet something about ‘bloggers’, you might be directing it at one or two or even three people who have done something that makes your eyes roll all the way over to 2027. But you are making one or two or even three HUNDRED or maybe thousand bloggers, wonder if that tweet is about them.

You’re adding a little tiny dusting of anxiety and OMG AM I THAT AWFUL SHOULD I QUIT to people without even realising.

How many times have you wondered if you’re the meant recipient for a cryptic internet comment?

Maybe some tweets are aimed at me. Maybe I am the worst. Maybe I post too much. Maybe what I post isn’t good enough. Maybe I need to up my photos. Maybe I should do less sponsored posts. Maybe I shouldn’t make money from this. Maybe I should shy away from marble or peonies. Maybe I should spend longer having banter with spellcheck and less time hanging with other bloggers. Or maybe, maybe I should just keep doing me.

Because I get that we have a free voice and a free opinion, but is it worth utilising that with the hope of bringing down others?

I know I’m not blameless in this. I know I’ve made passing comments in posts and tweets over the years. I know I’ve probably added a little cloud to someone’s sunny day without stopping to even think about it. Without imagining if that was me or putting myself in the other position. Without imagining how would it make me feel.

You can’t be a nice person all the time. You just can’t. Sometimes you’re tired and sometimes you’re on your period and sometimes people just make you want to claw all your own skin off, but what’s it going to achieve by making digs at them? By letting people know they’re annoying you?

Are they going to change for you? Probably not. Should they change for you? Never.

Moan to your boyfriend or best friend. Send hideous things in your WhatsApp groups. But don’t air everything online because really, what’s it achieving?

Sometimes I think in my head OH GOOD ANOTHER FUCKING DESIGNER BAG. And then I stop and I wonder why that’s offended me. Why I’m hating on a stranger for owning something I don’t have. And I realise it’s because I don’t own it and I can’t afford to own it and I’m full of angst that my blog hasn’t skyrocketed and I’m still stuck with a bag collection that’s 50% made up of Primarni’s finest. I realise that it is, in fact, just sheer and utter jealousy at its finest. And as soon as I see that in myself, I stop.

Maybe that person’s doing something better than me or maybe that person started earlier than me, or maybe it’s just sheer luck. Or maybe that person played a game to get to where they are and maybe it’s not fair. But life isn’t fair, and we can’t spend too long dwelling on that reality. We just got to move the eff on and work out how’s best to play our own cards.

The point of blogging, or at least the way I like to think about blogging, is to give anyone and everyone their own space to write about the things that want to write about. It is meant to be a hobby, something to enjoy in your spare time without stress. A creative outlet that brings a little bit of relief to everyday life. And not something that’s critiqued and torn apart publicly by virtual strangers. Because, hey, where’s the fun in that?

Surely we should be empowering each other and bouncing off each other’s energy and spirit and motivation? We should be encouraging each other and congratulating each other, we should be doing high fives, we should be being nice.

Because what’s the point in life without nice?

Without friendliness and smiles and love and support?

Maybe this is too twee and maybe this is unrealistic, but surely in a life that’s full of bad things every single bladdy day, we could all do with being a bit nicer to each other?

So here I am, declaring to you all, that going forward, I’d like to be one of the good eggs. I’d like to think more about who could read the things I write, and think about whether it’s worth it. Whether it’ll achieve anything? Or whether I’m just hoping to ruin someone’s good day all so I can make the most out of free speech.

And on that note, I’m off to offer up my opinion to Chris on why he should drive me to McDonald’s for a McFlurry. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday evenings, boos <3

  • YES. YES. YES. So well said 👌🏼

    http://www.ohsobecky.com

  • Sam

    I completely agree with the message of this post, Hannah. We absolutely should go forward, praising other bloggers and being happy for them because y’know, if they’ve achieved something amazing, chances are that they worked for it. I think as well though, that just because someone has a designer handbag, and you may not, doesn’t mean you aren’t doing well or that they are doing better than you. Can we really measure success in designer handbags? I know that my blog would never attract that (it’s a health and lifestyle blog) but I’d be happy for someone else if they had a fashion blog. And that’s the thing, every blog is slightly different because they author is an individual human being. We can’t all achieve the same things but we can be happy for each other when they do well (just like I/we are pleased for you when you do well!) xxx

    Sam // What I Know Now

  • I don’t think I moan about bloggers, I do it to my mum if need be! I’m usually jealous I find too, oh look another life changing holiday for you, oh another entire make up collection for free but I do know they’ve worked extremely hard for it! Just a green eyed monster me. My tweets happen to just be moaning about men, food and first world problems. Need to work on that bel. Great post as usual gal! x

  • I agree I have seen lots of negativity lately and that’s now what I’m about , I don’t wanna see peoples petty squabbles when I turn on my laptop xoxo
    http://www.katescloset.uk/

  • I feel like you’re the oracle or something. YOU KNOW AND SPEAK ALL THE TRUTH.
    p.s you’re deffo a good egg

  • I think that’s there’s nothing worse than online negativity. You hurt people in ways you don’t realize, and I find that being mean online can bring out a side in people that isn’t there when the phone or laptop is put away. Wonderful words, and thanks for sharing!

    Julia

    ExploresMore.com

  • We can all be guilty of this but it’s recognising when you’re in the wrong is what’s important!

    Frankie goes to – Travel Blog

  • han

    This is so true and happens WAY too often!

    Also, I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and everyone would eat and be happy.

  • very well written and honestly I could not agree more ! so true 🙂

    http://allornothing-blog.blogspot.co.uk

  • You said this just right Hannah! x
    Morgan | http://www.justmorgs.com

  • SO WELL SAID! I’m so alienated from the blogging community at the moment and I feel like I’m the only one.

    eleanor
    elleanorwears.com

  • Enjoy the McFlurry! If people are making snide tweets as a way to let you know they don’t like what you do then they are never worth listening to! I completely agree that there’s no point being negative (and to be honest, it just makes you look so jealous!) On the other hand, I do find some things about blogging a little annoying but it’s never because of the blogger her-or-himself, it’s probably just because something’s got a bit samey across all blogs or because I just don’t like that particular post (I’m sure we don’t all love everything that’s posted on every blog!). I tend to just stay away from blogs I haven’t “clicked” with rather than look at it just for the sake of having something to moan about so I hope other people aren’t being negative just to be bitchy or because they’re jealous – it’s just not cool xxx
    Lucy @ La Lingua | Food, Travel, Italy

  • You are such a good egg Hannah, you inspire and motivate so so so many people. I am sure this post alone has done a great deal of good in the blogging world, it’s a great reminded to think before we speak.

    Enjoy your McFlurry!

    • Thanks gal! The McFlurry was so dreamy 🙊

  • Great post Hannah! I couldn’t agree more! I saw something just the other day on Twitter where somebody was complaining about the bigger bloggers who blog about their designer handbags now. The way I see it is these people have worked their bums off for the past goodness knows how long to get to the stage where they can be offered designer gear. If I was at a stage where I was being offered a Chloe bag I’d be all over that shiz! xx

    • Haha I’m the same. If someone was like hey girl, do you wanna pick a Chloe bag I wouldn’t be like soz, no. Let’s all just be nice to each other, eh? 🙈

  • Amy

    The sad thing is that it’s other bloggers who post these ambiguous comments on Twitter and I completely agree we should all be supporting each other rather than shooting each other down even if it’s unintentional. I don’t really think you can ever pass judgement on another blogger (or anyone for that matter) because you don’t really know their situation or their life just from social media. I do however think the positive by far outweighs the negative when it comes to the blogosphere!
    Amy xx
    Call Me Amy

    • Totally agree – people only post a certain percentage of their lives online so we can’t possibly pass judgement on them without knowing the real ins and outs of their lives. But yes, there are some real good eggs out there and there’s so much support, it’s such a nice thing to be a part of! x

  • Well said! I think theres enough negativity in our real lifes so why bring it into your online life. I am all for positivity online because it can be an escape for some people. I have yet to experience any online negativity personally but thats probably because I havent been blogging for as long as some other people. But if I see someone being negative and just mean on twitter, I will immediately unfollow or block them. X

  • I sort of feel half of the reason there ends up being so much negativity is firstly because we’re girls – we can be so bloody bitchy sometimes, and secondly, because really, we’re all trying to impress one another. Perhaps that’s not our initial intentions, but when you’re armed with a gorgeous designer handbag, outside a row of pretty £million pound houses somewhere in West London, sun shining and your hair looking so damn good, and THEN you’re promoting said image all over social media, you’re doing it because you want adoration and valuation from others. Deep down. Maybe deep deep DEEP down…! We all have crappy days where we feel down about ourselves, and it can’t help when you’re bombarded with images of bloggers left right and centre with better clothes/hair/designer shiz/legs etc than you, and you just want to let rip and be bitter. But I just think said tweets/comments won’t improve anything. Putting negativity out there gets you nowhere, it could even make things worse. If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all, for real. We are our own worst critics and sometimes when you hear a comment that you ever so slightly feel is 100% about you, even though it 99.9% isn’t, you just immediately jump to the conclusion of OH SHIT, are they talking about me?!
    Rise above it, keep doing you, you’re flipping fab Hannah!

    She’s So Lucy // Health, Wellness & Beauty

    • This is all so so so spot on. Of course it’s all about validation and wanting to be liked, otherwise we probably wouldn’t all post so much to social media,if we didn’t on some level, however tiny, want some credit for it, something to make us feel like we are worthy. I literally cannot even begin to imagine what the world will be like in a decade 🙈

  • I COMPLETELY agree with this! Community’s like this are all about supporting each other and boosting everyone’s confidence I feel and you may not agree with someones opinion on a post – and that’s fine for discussion in the comments. I also feel constructive (especially for me) is always appreciated even if it may put you on a downer for 5 minutes. It’s ultimately someone trying to give you advice and helping you to improve because they believe you can. I love randomly tweeting people telling them I like their blog, it’s little things like that that make peoples days something.

    Katie
    http://www.katiehodgkinson.com

    • I love tweeting people and telling them I’ve loved a particular post. It makes me feel good as much as it makes them feel good and isn’t the world just a nicer place when we’re all feeling warm and liked? 🙂 x

  • I’m relatively new to blogging, and have been feeling so excited to discover a whole world of supportive people who are interested in the same things I’m interested in. Sure, there’s some negativity, but I always try to just look for the similarities and discard the differences. I don’t have time for that shade 🙂
    Likely By Sea

  • Great post!!

  • Such a good post – supporting each other in the blogging community is so important.
    http://www.theglitterfashionista.com

  • I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and everyone would eat and be happy…
    JUST BE NICE TO EACH OTHER GUYZZZZ
    Let’s eat fish finger sarnies soon so you can tell me all about Marbs xxxx

    http://www.fashionnomads.com

  • YOURE SUCH A GOOD EGG, I hope I’m a good egg! I sometimes do get jealous of other bloggers lives, clothes, houses, dogs etc but I have to remind myself that each and every one of them have worked their butt off for it!

    Absolutely loved this post! Yes for positive vibes!

  • I’ve been trying really really hard to stop myself from making negative comments both on and offline for the past year, after I noticed that good old bitching session was leaving me feeling much worse than before I started. I don’t want to be a negative or bitchy person, and it makes me uncomfortable when other people are making comments like that, because there is a pressure to join in and be a comrade. I’m trying to resist this, and instead every time I think, speak or hear a negative comment about somebody else, I try to counteract it with a positive one. We’re all only human after all, and of course there will be things and people we don’t like, but I don’t want to spend my life dwelling on them. Stephie xx

  • wendy

    I think all you can do is ignore the “negativity” not everyone is going to like everyone and that’s okay. When it comes to blogging, there seems to be a great deal of one upmanship going on (you have one designer bag, when blogger X is like well I have two new designer bags, etc.) and the one upmanship breeds a weird environment. Another commenter mentioned above about readers only see parts of bloggers lives, but too often its just the super nice, shiny bits and I think that’s where so called “jealousy” comes in. With social media in every aspect of our lives, it can be hard to remember that we’re all only seeing the good stuff. The blogger with the fancy bags might live in a hovel or might eat ramen every night in order to pay her taxes.

  • This post couldn’t have come at a better time! At lunch i was talking to a friend about how it all makes me want to give up (again, might i add) it’s worse than having no comments at all. It has stopped me opening out to my readers/viewers more just by seeing others posts because i think: i shouldn’t post that people won’t want to see it. On the other hand on my youtube i tend to try and ‘defend’ myself which probably comes across terrible and hinders pursuing this as a career but its just because i feel like poo! I suppose it’s ‘be the change you want to see in yourself’ I hope you got that McFlurry- you deserve it!

  • Great honest, personal and brave post.
    I’m not for the hate or negativity.. We’re all bloggers individually and that’s how it should be. If you don’t like what a bloggers doing, so what, it’s their piece of the www, just as much as yours is yours.
    There is no right or wrong way to do things. What suits one might not suit the other. So what.
    Focus on you. 🙂

    Caroline.x
    http://www.notesfromcaroline.com

  • YES. This post is absolutely bang on!
    I’m pretty new to blogging and – so far – I’ve largely found the online ‘community’ to be so warm, friendly and inclusive. But there is definitely more going on under the surface, and some aspects of it make me so nervous and feel a bit like I don’t fit.
    I had a big rant the other day about how I found Twitter and Instagram could be a bit cut-throat, and the whole follow-unfollow culture is sometimes hard to swallow – when you’ve only got 150-200 followers, you really feel it when you lose 5!
    I must say though that the vast majority people I’ve interacted with so far have been lovely, helpful and supportive. Not sure what my point is, but I guess it’s swings and roundabouts!
    Love your blog, you’re a huge inspiration to me 🙂
    Rebecca x
    http://www.thestyleshake.com

  • Well said Hannah – there is one particular blogger who is always calling others out for getting more collabs or samples or gifts or whatever than them when they have been in the game longer – it makes me feel dead uncomfortable most of the time (I guess me and that ‘unfollow’ button should get acquainted).

    What if it’s me? Am I bad person? It triggers all sorts in my head!

    We should be proud of each other, embrace individuality and celebrate each others successes… LIFE’S TOO SHORT!

    Emma | HarmonyBlaze.co.uk

  • Brilliant and so well said Hannah – I see a wide variety of attitudes on my feed (people praising, others moaning, some who shade and some who try to question choices in a manner that isn’t just opinion) but you can spot so many amazing people who are doing their own thing and open to people following them because people like their content.

    And that’s the problem, the person and their tastes changed, and people think they can then have a word about it. I’d rather keep any niggles off the timeline because it’s not constructive, and I can say happily that every blogger I see doing something awesome thoroughly deserves it if they’ve worked hard and enjoy what they produce.

    You’re right, we can’t always be nice all the time, but there’s definitely room for more positivity (even ‘omg so jel but well done’

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Beauty Wellbeing

  • Thank you for this post, you achieved to write what many of us think in a funny honest way. That’s what we want to read! So much better than designer bags we can’t afford. (Well maybe except the céline belt bag)
    Love your blog, you’re an inspiration!

    • Awww thanks so much Sarah. Glad you liked it x


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