Three food bloggers are mad as hell and they’re not going to take it any more.
I’m speaking of the idea put forth to them, in our social media-crazy world, they should be honored to work for nothing in exchange for exposure. (I’ve covered this subject before, from Putting the Free in Freelance to Links are the New Currency.)
In their responses, two writers use humor to get their point across, and one goes for it directly:
1. Matt Armendariz of Matt Bites made his point gently in a letter to a tire company, suggesting he get four tires for free in exchange for “tons of goodwill, some great jokes, and plenty of personal recommendations to his network.”
2. Cheryl Sternman Rule of 5 Second Rule politely gives free tips to those who wish to approach bloggers about working for free. Cheryl, on the other hand, wants to be paid. “This currency is special for several reasons,” she explains. “It allows me to buy food, which I can then eat; it allows me to pay my mortgage, so I can have shelter; it allows me to buy clothing, so I am not naked; and it allows me to pay my monthly internet bill, so I can make fun of you on my blog.”
3. Aun Koh of Chubby Hubby goes for a more direct approach. He gives it to a publisher who wants his recipes for free for a cookbook, quoting the offer letter: “… to let the world know about your blog, and drive traffic to your site. The inclusions in <TITLE OF BOOK> will be deemed by us to be the best blogs on the internet. Make sure your blog is one of them.”
His response: “To take your argument that once content has been created it should be free, do you think that rationale would work with Reuters or with Getty Photos? Gee, wouldn’t it be nice if every stock photo agency in the world simply said, “Oh well, we’ve already taken the photos… guess they aren’t worth anything. Hey, we’re waiving any licensing fees or copyrights on these images. Whomever wants them, they’re free for use.” Or if every publishing company, magazine or book, said the same thing, that any article or content they have ever published can now be syndicated free of charge since, well, it’s already been produced, is out in the public domain, and now has no monetary value. Let’s see if Conde Nast would be cool with giving away articles for nothing.”
Excellent points. Bravo to all three.
Now, why do marketers approach food bloggers in the first place? Because they succeed. Most food bloggers blog as a hobby and are not trying to make money from their blogs. Many would be thrilled to take these marketers up on their offers, for no pay. And there are so many more of them than there are of these three, who are trying to make a living.
Do you disagree?
(Thanks to Traca Savadogo for passing on a link.)