Monday, August 03, 2009

MomDot's hypocritical weeklong PR blackout

MomDot: "our site, and many others, are inundated with hundreds, if not thousands, of product requests each year resulting in massive obligations and deadline stress"... "MomDot is challenging bloggers to participate for one week in August in a PR BLACKOUT challenge where you do not blog ANY giveaways, ANY reviews, and Zero press releases."

Looks good on the surface but MomDot looks more like a commercial venture to me than a blog, judging by the amount of self-confessed PR relationships, advertising on their site and the option to subscribe to be part of the "premier community for moms who blog". So basically the team wants to take a holiday in August to get away from the stress of running a commercial publication. Needless to say that MomDot can always refuse to follow-up on a press release if they don't want to. I turn away dozens a month and never talk about them. The whole PR Blackout call looks more like a PR stunt to me. I would support the initiative if it wasn't so hypocritical.


Haasiegirl said...

I just wanted to say that its so funny when I go around reading stuff about a PR stunt. I am a mom that sits at home and chats w/ other moms all day. I am not that savvy and my site is contributed by other bloggers. Its all done for fun since I have nothing else to do. I used to own a forum and now i own a blog. I love to write and I love to chat.

LIke so many other bloggers, i have tested out ways to make a little income from my blog, whether that be by ads or writing, none of which have panned out to much more than poverty level. I am not a marketer, I didnt go to school for advertising, and if you read past 5 of my articles, you can see I am not really that great of a writer either.

But i keep on, mainly because I enjoy it and it gives me something to do while my daughter is in school.

I own a forum, I have always had one, just a place for women to chat, and as a forum owner, all sorts of talking goes on and I am lucky enough to witness that. Talks about plagiarism or stress or husband problems or concerns. And during one of those talks, women were talking about how stressed they were and I wrote an article on it...basic blog stress. I feel it too. Pressure to keep up with other bloggers, afraid if I dont post something, no one will read anymore. We judge ourselves on comments and traffic. Its kinda sad, but I fall victim to it as well.

Then we decided to do a radio show and discuss it so callers could call in. It was just our community. It wasnt a call to action, it wasnt a reach to the blogosphere, it was the same women that meet every day and chat with us...our topics in our radio shows have ranged from sponsors to sex...its just very random. Like i said, we are not professionals.

This one went from the forum topic to a blog post, to our radio show. On a whim during that show we just said hey, if your stressed, why dont we all just not do reviews or giveaways for a week and put together some sort of blog hop for it. 4 days later I posted a very nonconfrontational blog to invite those that didnt make our friday chat and everyone flipped out.

I think what started as a fun thing for our community has turned into some big controversial statement and us as the spokes person for blogs not working with PR, which was NEVER our intentions. I dont have some big office behind me where I dictate to people a PR move and by all means, I have said MUCH MORE controversial things from our blog before and it has gone relatively unnoticed.

But the only thing that frustrates me is the need for articles to be written where people are accusing me of things that never happened. There was no big scheme, no plan, do you think I like to sign online and go from my little blog where I dance to britney spears and talk to women all day, to being the butt of jokes and told that it was probably ME who tipped off media.

While I apprieciate all the links, the intent was surely lost. This had nothing to do with PR. It had to do with the women who put so much stress on themselves that they worry when their stats drop one person or if they say no, they will miss an opportunity.

Haasiegirl said...

So while it may look "hypocritical" that we have relationships WITH PR, its simply due to the fact that they were always there. We didnt put out the words that were written about us, others did. We didnt create this fire storm, others did.

And i personally have had to take my day, which i generally balance between spongebob and helping women online, and refute and defend not only our original intent, but also my family, my blog, my hard work.

Yes, I have a media ad company that i have had on there for 5 MONTHS, but i have never made more than $150 from being in an ad network. Everything else I do, I do because I want to do it.

Im not martha stewert, im not oprah.

I am a simple mom, with an opinion, trying to help women and encourage them to blog more about their families or not feel so indebted to Public Relations every day based on their own statements.

I just wish everyone would just let my community be.