Nixdminx
The life and times of a happy go lucky blogger in London
Snarking and the Mommy Blogger
Categories: blogging mums

It seems the media is fascinated by the US Mommy blogger – a fascination which I doubt will go away – but why does it have to involve such a whole load of snark? There are two blogs in the US which are constantly on the radar and usually for the wrong reasons too.

A-lister Gywneth Paltrow has established her llifestyle and family blog/newsletter Goop and a year or so on, there’s still lots of negative backlash. I’m not exactly sure why – it’s a pretty, well designed, considered, and sometimes wistful, statement of who she is; yet it’s had a pasting. It’s more genuine than, say, the lifestyle pages of Vogue. At least when I read her thoughts on London, I don’t feel I’m being sold something, which I so often do when I ready glossy mags fattened by advertising. I love what she does, and by the way, if you haven’t seen Glee, you have to watch her in this.

Celebrity Mommy bloggers aside, Dooce is the leading US Mom blogger, and a great success story to boot. One of my favourite blogs, Gawker, has run a piece on the amount of attention she receives which you can read here. There’s a bit of ‘So what?’ about it when I read it – and I wonder why shouldn’t she get media coverage if she’s a trailblazer, and why is a blog bashing another blog? Well, there are no rules in the blogosphere which makes it such an interesting and frustrating place to be.

Sadly, blog-on-blog bashing is becoming an all too familiar story. I don’t do it myself because I have neither the time nor the inclination, but it’s tough to be on the receiving end one way or another. It’s a very weird feeling to read a blog post written about something you do, or are doing, and the comment trail that follows. It’s then that you have to take on board that blogs are to some degree public property once they are put out in the web at large (and don’t ever forget it, for good or bad). It’s a sympton of the cyber conversation culture that love and snarkiness co-exist – free speech resonates with others and comments can take as little time as a text message to write and post.

But all hope is not lost. Dooce is owned by Heather Armstrong and if you’re into blogging and you can’t fail to have heard of her, she has very resourcefully turned snarking on its head and her army of dissenters into a new art form. It makes me laugh out loud that she has developed a huge ad revenue stream from her ‘hate mail’ by publishing it on an area of her blog for people to read – it turned out to be hugely popular, obviously people love to read a good snark if it’s at someone else’s expense – if only I could the same from spam comments!

And who are the other US Mommy bloggers worth checking out? I’ve just got two super special reads to recommend, and both of them have made me cry with laughter and they also are shit hot writers, so well worth taking a few quiet moments to read and enjoy the stillness (by that I mean after the kids have gone to bed!):

Nashville, Tennessee based Suburban Turmoil is a favourite of mine which I have definitely not had enough time to read of late. While it’s a window on another world it airs the common themes of modern life with a large dose of humour

MTFF is another one, she’s a Brit with a massively creative life, and her blog is choc full of beautifully written prose

And if you don’t know what snarking is, it is by definition:

a) A strange creature created by Lewis Caroll

b) A sarcastic, caustic comment or interaction in cyberspace

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3 Comments to “Snarking and the Mommy Blogger”

  1. Troutie says:

    Nice recommendations for new reads – thanks!
    Troutie recently posted..Pissed

  2. Great post. I agree that there’s an inordinate amt of time spent on mum blogging catfights. Or disagreements that can be cast as catfights in the media.

    I’ll definitely check out these other blogs. I LOVE dooce.com. But I have to disagree with you about Goop. It reads as self-indulgent BS to me through and through. I don’t spend my time running it down. I just don’t visit it.

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