Events feel like they are in free fall right now, history is happening at a rate of knots and it’s very difficult to keep up, or keep from getting overwhelmed by it all. I’ll admit, over the past few weeks I have been unable to ‘be a blogger’. Writing about make up and clothes has felt like empty labour in the face of everything else. So, initially, I found business as usual to be a little jarring and I stepped away from social media for some time as a result.
I have, however, seen the argument that’s simmering away about whether it is ‘right’ and ‘appropriate’ to write about politics on blogs and blogger’s social media. First of all: of course it bloody is. We aren’t just dealing with political issues right now, these are very big and very real human rights issues. Give your followers more credit; if your personality is your brand, then I’d argue that your followers actively want to know your opinion about a wide range of topics.
And y’know ultimately if it’s losing followers that worries you, they’re just as likely to unfollow you for not saying anything as they are to unfollow you for revealing your feelings. I have seen more backlash in the past few days against those who are saying nothing than against those who are writing and amplifying other’s voices. And this criticism isn’t coming from other bloggers and pubic figures – it’s coming from readers and followers.
Okay, people become burned out. Freelancers have got to eat. We have to take care of our own mental health and, yeah, very often we aren’t going to know what to say. If you need time out, take it. I hid from it all for a while as it absolutely overwhelmed me. And that freedom of choice is a privilege I have that so many millions of other people don’t. I can’t and won’t forget that.
Whilst disconnected from social media, I needed art and writing and content. I looked at outfit posts, make up reviews, videos and illustrations. There is still a space for these things, many still want and need them.
So I’m proposing that there is space for both ‘content’ and highlighting human rights issues on social media and blogs, even if you don’t blog about ‘politics’ you can share others that do. I have no idea what to say sometimes, and a lot of the time I feel like my voice absolutely isn’t what is needed, so I will RT and amplify the voices of others. NO I AM NOT PERFECT and I am not holding myself up as a shining example because there isn’t one. But I have resolved to keep blogging here about outfits and make up and weddings and life, and to keep my social media political as it has been of late.
That’s what feels right to me.
Blogging, influence and social media is still all a relatively new phenomenon and we’re all working out the best ways of operating within that as we go. Guys, at the end of the day, your actions are your business: if you have a platform then consider using it. Shit is way too real.
As an addendum to the above, here are some of the resources that helped me when I felt helpless as to what I could do (my disability often prevents me from doing everything I want to):
Watching the signatures shoot up on this petition has been satisfying (if you haven’t signed it, then get on it!)