One of the nice things about having your own blog is that nobody but you controls the headlines, images, captions, or advertising. The downside, of course, is that your only readers are the ones that find their way to your little corner of the internet. And so, sometimes we make tradeoffs, in the name of expanded readership.
Here is an article I wrote for Minerva Place, that online lady mag I mentioned a few weeks ago. When I submitted the piece, I called it “Curvy Girl Dating,” or some such nonsense. The piece got retitled “Real Women Have Curves.” Oy! How embarassing! The concept of “real” womanhood is one I have railed against time and again. The idea that body shape is what makes us “real” women is my least favorite and the laziest trope of the body positive movements. Real women are skinny and fat and voluptuous and svelte and flat-chested and pear-shaped and tall and short and blah blah blah. You know the drill.
And yet, there it is, right above my byline.
What’s more, the ads surrounding my piece (which is about body acceptance and body positivity…) are weight-loss ads. Double oy. When you give your writing to other people to share, you give up some serious contextual control. Online ads are often keyword triggered, which leads to some very confusing ad/article pairings. Love your body! Get rid of your fat! Everybody is different and it’s beautiful! Look like the people on magazines! Mixed messaging much?
What do you think? Is it worth trying to reach a new target audience when you sacrifice some of the decision-making power to people (or automated ad generators) who may not be on the same page?
Related Post: Tyra Banks thinks calling plus size women “fiercely real” is a good thing…
Related Post: One gentleman didn’t think I “sounded” curvy on an online dating profile.