Let me just start off by saying that these are my own thoughts. It’s something that has been on my mind lately. I love being a blogger. It’s a fun and has given me so many opportunities that I’m grateful for. I’ve also found out about a lot of trends and brands this way. It’s been more great than negative, let me clarify that first. But lately, I’ve seen this fine line of consumerism get crossed and it’s making me think.
Blogging can be so many things. From life hacks to reviews, there’s something for everyone. It’s also a great way to make money and make it a side hustle. I do it so I know it’s great. But after all the holiday madness and sales, I just saw how much we push people to buy things, even things we personally haven’t tried. So I’m trying to see where this line is getting crossed. Let me explain.
Making Money is Okay But
I’m a big fan of reviews. Now, I think about every possible thing before buying something. If I see an affiliate link in a review, I will genuinely click on it. I think where I see an issue is when some people have said they’ve never used an item and still link it. One time, I saw a fashion blogger just tweet an affiliate link to a blender with no disclosure just saying that they liked it. If they had tied it
I’m all for sponsored posts and affiliate links. I feel like the danger lies when we’re pushing readers to buy things or bombard them with links just because we want to earn money. The whole point that I’m getting at and realizing for myself is that we shouldn’t abuse blogging to get money from people. Don’t just link something for the sake of linking something, especially if it’s something you’ve never tried. Again, I’m all for sponsored posts an affiliate links but if we’re overdoing it just to gain money from people, it’s something to reanalyze.
Something I’m doing personally is shopping sustainable and choosing to keep shopping to a minimum. This is 100% a topic I can talk about on its own. But my issue is that I’ve seen so many bloggers buying and partnering up with sketchy fast fashion online stores (looking at you SheIn). There are so many environmental and ethical issues with some of these stores (and other businesses in general) that it’s so important that we research who we are partnering with and not tell our readers to support unethical brands. Let’s not just push people to buy things without looking at it’s lasting effects.
Also, Please Disclose
I wasn’t going to mention this here because I feel like this could be a whole different topic on how to blog. But disclosing affiliate links and sponsorships are important to you legally. Just do it. I hate starting arguments so I usually don’t say anything about it. But I’m in a Facebook group of non-bloggers and saw someone keep posting affiliate links and messaged them just being like “heads up, make sure to disclose.” Anyway, they got mad. Are disclosures attractive? No. But they’re there to benefit you as a blogger to follow the law.
There’s a lot more I can go into with this. Like YouTubers promoting sketchy companies that scam people. Plus, there are tons of other ethical things that can be talked about. But this is something I’ve had in my head for a while.
Again, not saying sponsorships and affiliate links are bad. I do them all the time. This is about being responsible and making sure we’re not pushing our readers to spend for our benefit.
What are your thoughts?