If you've been a part of the Bloggy World for a while, I'm sure you've noticed that there are "cliques" within the blogosphere. You know.... the sets of Bloggers that have hundreds (maybe even thousands) of followers and they stick together. The popular ones, in a way.
Now, generally, I hold these cliques in mind the same way I did in high school. Usually like-minded (or like-blogging) people gravitate towards one another. In high school, the cheerleaders hung out with the cheerleaders. The basketball players with the basketball players. Etc, etc. It wasn't because they didn't like others who weren't in their activity...... but more because you spent about 18 hours a day with that set of people, so you were most comfortable with them.
It's the same way with blogging, really. Women who started their blogs around the same time..... women who got married around the same time.... women who are having babies around the same time.... women who are going through "health" journeys.... women who like to be super fashionable. You get the idea.
And, really, all of that is ok. As long as everyone is nice to one another. I was a cheerleader and an Honor student in high school, so I hung out with the other cheerleaders and honor students. But, I tried to be nice to other groups. Same way with blogging. Some people connect more than others, but you can still be kind.
I've never been a "popular" throughout my life. I have always been one that has a lot of friends, but would never be considered to be in the "in crowd." Basically, I've been ok with that. Because, a lot of times, to be in the "in crowd" you have to exclude other people. And, while everyone has done that to some extent in their lives..... while I've certainly made other people feel bad (unintentionally..... which is usually worse because you were giving NO thought to the person, instead of any thought even if a negative one).... there are some people in the world who get off on treating others as though they are less.
Which brings me to my title..... Bloggy Mean Girls. I've been blogging for long enough that I've heard of such. However, I hadn't really experienced it for myself. Again.... there are some bloggers that I know don't consider me their favoritebloggingfriendEVERlovethemsomuchandjustwanttobereallifebesties. Every now and again, we'll comment to each other. Or, tweet back and forth. Or, I'll comment on their blog and they'll send back a short, sweet reply. But, we're not texting, calling, and emailing one another. That's cool. Totally cool. I have my bloggy friends that I consider real life friends and they have theirs. But, they are nice and I am nice. It's a fine coexistence.
I'll even go so far as to say that there are some Super Popular Bloggers that I follow that never, ever respond to a tweet or a comment. And, I'm perfectly fine with that. They seem like really nice people.... they get a ton of comments and tweets.... I'm confident enough in myself to interact with them without getting affirmation back.
This week, however, I got my first real experience with a Bloggy Mean Girl. A complete snub. A subliminal "you aren't important enough to me to acknowledge."
And, it sucked just like others have said it did.
Here's the deal. I work in radio and, by extension, the music industry. I know all about snubs and hierarchy and people using people to get further in their jobs. Just like high school and blogging, I have a pretty good handle on my place in that world. I know to what extent my position can help others....... I recognize the people who don't give a crap about me, the people who only care in so much as I can help them, and the people who actually value ME as a person. I also recognize that it is a job. A job that we're all passionate about (otherwise we wouldn't be willing to put up with it), but a job. In other words, if any of us were not in the job we were in, we would cease to be important in that particular world. The friends that do us favors now, wouldn't be doing them. The perks we get now, would no longer exist. We are expendable.
So, let me bring the Bloggy Mean Girls a little reality.
We are all bloggers. All of us. Whether we have two followers or ten thousand. No one hit "Publish" that very first time and had instant "success" with their blogs. Pioneer Women didn't get her TV show in the first year she posted recipes on the internet.
I imagine that about 95% of us just like to catalog life and thought blogging would be a great way to do that.
Sometimes, I'm pretty sure that I'm talking to myself. And, while I *love* comments (and would love to consistently have more) and I absolutely ADORE some of the people I've met through blogging, I'm ok with talking to myself. Because, ultimately, this blog is for me to chronicle my life.
Whether you have a ton of followers or just your mom reading your blog, absolutely no one would be reading what you have to say if you stopped blogging. There are bloggers that I used to read that had hundreds of followers..... then, they stopped blogging. And? I imagine that while they probably keep in touch with a handful of people, they don't have hundreds of people hanging on every word they type/say anymore.
So, Bloggy Mean Girls, here is a challenge....... Start thinking about your start in blogging. You know, when you were a virtual nobody. And, remember that. OR, stop blogging, tweeting, or instagraming for about six months. Then, see how popular you are or how much pull you have in the social media world.
Bloggy Mean Girls...... Be nice. Being a jerk will catch up to you.