Sunday, August 05, 2012

Heard and Overhead at BlogHer

Friday I was in New York City for the BlogHer Conference. It was a first and incredibly eye-opening. There was what I expected: thousands of bright, interesting women who love to write, and bunches of women who have turned blogs into businesses. That’s not my thing, but I was pretty inspired by the passion for the written word and the connections made by blogs. And there was the unexpected: Hundreds of vendors pitching their products and brands to women bloggers. I did think, “Well, duh.”

But also unexpected were what those products were: condiments, snack foods, cleaning supplies, paper products and vacuum cleaners. Yes, vacuum cleaners. I know. I thought, “Even here in the blogosphere stereotypes prevail.” But they are stereotypes supported by marketers who have crunched their numbers. We may be bringing home the gluten-free, faux bacon and microwaving it—but women are the decision makers for high priced appliances. But sad, ya know?

The most wonderful part of being in a crowd of smart word-loving women was listening to them. Here are some of the take-aways from formal sessions and just sitting and listening:

Blogging matters because this is the cyber-campfire. People come for the stories.

The truth about stories is that stories are all we are.

The whole story is the whole story.

I’m 50 years old; this is as nice as I’m going to get.

There is more than economic metrics; there are also the metrics of connection and friendship.

There is value in being uncomfortable. As Americans we are addicted to being comfortable.

When asked if having multiple blogs made it hard to have a clear identity, the speaker said, “All women have multiple identities and multiple personalities. We are teacher, parent, writer, partner, dancer, activist, vegan, employee, boss, friend, leader; that’s what makes being a woman hard.” She got a lot of applause.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing!!!! Did to meet any other Bloggers in recovery?? The single best thing I have found via blogging is that kindred spirit I have found with other women who share my same passion. It is a beautiful thing!!!! I hope you were able to connect on a meaningful level with others! Blessings! Katherine k.