Zoe Sugg aka. Zoella, has been in the spotlight recently for two different things 1. Her salary and 2. for causing total outrage with some of her followers by posting a picture of herself on Snapchat in a pair of Calvin Kleins (and a t-shirt obvs). Both of these things have outraged me slightly because while there is always an intrigue with how much Bloggers really earn, it’s actually none of our business, and while Zoe’s audience are mostly young teens, she herself is in her mid-twenties and the photo wasn’t in the least bit sexual or suggestive. While I defend her, equally I do appreciate that she has to remember to tailor her content in accordance to her audience, but on the other hand, young people have never looked or had access to so much stuff that takes them out of an early youth as much as they do now. What doesn’t develop as fast as them is their maturity and their understanding of relationships and adult life in general, which is why the internet is such a dangerous place for them and why the comments section following various posts on Instagram by Zoella and her fellow ‘Team Internet’ peeps, are rife with teens & haters getting themselves in a tiz over the silliest things.
Everybody just calm the f*** down, okay… it’s not Playboy!
This brings me onto the blogging industry as a whole.
Recently, Sophie from Sophie Rose wrote a post about how becoming a full-time blogger doesn’t appeal to her and I couldn’t agree more. That being said, my ultimate ambition is to become a (freelance) writer and while some will argue it’s the same thing, it totally isn’t, like at all.
If you work freelance at anything, not just blogging, you have to create your own style and become your own brand; there has to be a reason why other brands and people want to work with you and use your services, whatever they may be and of course your stats need to add up too. For those in the blogging world, I can’t help but feel you sometimes lose yourself along the way? Social feeds lack any kind of personality or humanist element –instead feeds are full of manicured shots with the same filter, or it’s “look how beaut this dress is, you can get 10% off with my code.” Look, we all have bills to pay and I can’t imagine how stressful it becomes when you’re self-employed, particularly as a blogger, and there is of course a fine line between your online profile and your behind the scenes real life, but I am craving less of the polished, more of the real right now. I am searching for bloggers with genuine opinions about life as well as all the beauty stuff in between. And call me out on this if you will, but I sort of feel that Zoella is doing this. While her content is polished, it’s real and she has her own opinions and I love how she has responded to Pants Gate (did you see what I did there?). While there are a couple of full-timers managing to keep hold of their own style, for the most part all I’m seeing now is everyone lusting (and buying) the same Givenchy Antigona bag and all wanting (and buying) puppies despite the fact a few of them travel far too much to warrant having a dog right now; it’s totally irresponsible and something they should not be promoting to their impressionable followers.
For the big time full-timers, there must be 100 things that constrain their content owing to various brand relationships and agreements that have been signed behind the scenes, but it’s like any job that puts you in the spotlight; the moment you say or do something out of place or contradictory to existing messages, and that’s your reputation down the shitter and your so called loyal following will be the first in line to call you out. I couldn’t deal with this, I am far too opinionated and I haven’t got the patience to try and keep up a certain set of appearances. I also couldn’t deal with the disloyalty and immaturity of followers who are still too young and inexperienced to understand the real world, and also feel it’s in their right to be so rude about someone’s appearance as well as to each other. I blogged a while back that some people just think they know better and I hate all those people. That being said, if I was a teen right now and while having to deal with my changing body I had to manage social media I just couldn’t. I got into fashion and beauty quite late when I was younger and for the most part didn’t really care that I wasn’t shopping the latest trends, in fact I loved that I was a bit different. Now, I’m not so sure how secure being different is unless you have the self-confidence to be yourself in a sea of beige.
Young women, despite there still being an enormous gap of inequality against our male counterparts, are arguably the most liberated we’ve ever been. Of course we still live in a conflicting, sometimes prudish, sometimes hypocritical society, but we do still have autonomy about how we conduct ourselves, including our online social profiles. While we have as many haters as we do supporters, I have always believed that we do actually have more of the world open to us than men. For example (and this is my opinion), retail is very much held up by women’s enjoyment for shopping and I think we have a lot more freedom in what we choose to pursue in our free time; even though some industries aren’t well represented by women, women are still working in more varied careers across the board and often make the better leaders when they reach the top; yes we undoubtedly have the burden of being the ones to have children (and all the conflict it brings in the workplace), but at least we can still totally relish in motherhood if we want to (finances aside). And finally, the likes of Zoella and fellow twenty-something women are totally owning their own segment of the internet right now! Of course we still have a huge way to go before women around the world are properly represented, supported and treated as equals, but I can’t help but feel that we’re on the way.
What do you guys think?
Until next time x