It all started with this article on the global herald. (Not sure how much sense this will make until you read the article!) I think that there are some interesting and valid points in the article, but there are also many that seem so wrong to me. It's them I want to address.
Firstly, I don't like the suggestion that there should be a fixed hierarchy of blogger or press types that all PR agencies should follow. Yes there is a hierarchy and rightly, big publications and buyers come first but the hierarchy of bloggers is more difficult to define. So why should there be just one? I'm sure this would make things "easier" but easier doesn't mean better Why should there be unity? Some deisgners are ready to accept bloggers and some aren't. Some designers want as many blogs as possible to cover their shows. Surely that's up to them!
There also seems to be a bit too much focus in the article on Danish pastries: if all the bloggers promise not to eat any baked goods will they leave us alone!? Its a difficult situation. I'm sure there are some bloggers who do turn up to take as much as they can but it hurts to be tarred with the same brush.
Regarding these "bliggers" everyone is tweeting about today: I kind of resent the idea some people have that all bloggers are only attending LFW for the "freebies": i'd like to point out that I haven't had a free glass of champagne or so much as a cup of coffee all week. I've also only received one goodie bag, and I usually save the stuff from them for giveaways for you guys!
I go to watch the shows, I head to Starbucks to write up my reviews, and then I go to the next show. Repeat until tired and ready to go home. I work hard and i'm proud of the coverage I post. I'm also prepared to accept that it doesn't compare to the coverage from Vogue!
I agree there does need to be some quality control, and the best way to do this would be for the PRs to take two minutes and look at the blogs they're thinking of inviting. If somebody decides that this blog isn't good enough or doesn't have a large enough readership to warrant my attending the shows then that's fair enough: I would be prepared not to go if the powers that be decide to bring some order to things. But please don't treat us like second class citizens. This sentence in particular made me angry:
Either that, or create a different ticket for bloggers, and create a “bloggers room” which is full of computer terminals and tap water.
I mean really? Separate tickets and tap water? It seems to me if anyone is "blagging" its the chap writing this article who's scared someone is going to take the cup of coffee he's so entitled to!! I mean are we really reigniting this debate again because "real" journalists dont want to miss out on a cup of tea?!
This debate isn't going to go away until the blogger versus 'real' journalists issue is resolved.
LFW is an overcrowded event as it is, and I can see that people would be worried about it only getting more crowded: but there has to be a way of handling this constructively without alienating the bloggers that are there to work, and do the best job they can.
Love, Tor xx