The American Blogger Controversy

The American Blogger Controversy. Have you heard about it? Perhaps its because I’ve had a sucky week and haven’t been able to check my social media sites like I normally do, perhaps it was because I was too busy eating bon-bons and watching Oprah, Ellen and The Chew. There has been a firestorm of controversy surrounding the film, American Blogger, by Christopher Wiegand. Before I go further – watch the trailer.


American Blogger Official Trailer from Chris Wiegand on Vimeo.
 

Here are some of the negative comments that I came across on Twitter (and yes, I’m publishing with their names in place):

Not all of the comments are negative. Some are snarky, some are funny. I still need to ask though – what the hell is everyone’s problem with this movie?

Does it depict all bloggers in America? No. Does it depict racially diverse bloggers? No. Does it depict the dad bloggers or male bloggers out there? No. Does it depict an overweight mother of three who blogs about her boring life and raising an ADHD teen, a tween with anger issues, a husband who is from the dark ages and a dog who thinks she’s human? Of course not, because that would be me. I’m not in the film, and I am okay with that.

Just as YOUR blog is YOUR voice, your little corner of the world, Chris’ story is just that – HIS story. From Casey’s blog:

They are a very VERY tiny piece of the puzzle to this big huge internet world but they are my story. Chris, as a storyteller, went out to tell this story. His story of learning what this was all about in my tiny world. The way these women tell their stories authentically does represent American Bloggers, but we are completely aware that not all categories of American Bloggers are represented in this film. Nor was that the goal for this first film. You can read this post from almost a year ago. Read the idea, the thought behind it. See where I mention American Blogger Part 2? From the beginning this was the start of a much bigger conversation. So many stories to be told. He also bought the domain (www.americanblogger.com) with the idea that it could eventually be more than a film but also a website. Featuring American Bloggers everyday. These are all ideas and dreams that he had but needed to start somewhere and build momentum to take this bigger places.

Quite frankly, I’m ashamed at the bloggers who have bashed Chris’ movie so publicly via social media and on their own blogs. You are entitled to your opinion, but don’t include ME in your rant that this is an “outrage” against bloggers all over America. You do not speak for me. I stand behind Chris and Casey and applaud them for taking this idea and moving forward with it. Blog Elevated posted an article about the controversy and, while they make some valid points, I’m sorry – they just do not speak for me.

This movie is going to open doors for all bloggers once it is released. It is going to tell a story about what blogging is about, the fun, the not-so-fun, the down-and-dirty of it all, and it is going to show businesses and marketers that we ARE a powerful force to be reckoned with, that we CAN cause a global change in anything we put our collective minds to doing.

To all of the bloggers that participated in this film – thank you. Thank you for sharing your voice, your opinion, and your stories. Please do not allow any of the negativity to alter you or your blogs.

“A true blogger will never attack the hopes and dreams of another, but will do everything in their power to help that person see their dream become a reality.” — Kim Miller

 

Chris and Casey – thank you for taking this idea, this dream, and making it a reality. I for one am thrilled about it, and I cannot wait to see the amazing things that you will do in the future as you build upon it. Let’s show some love to this young filmmaker and start tweeting:

#I♥AmericanBlogger

 

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2 Comments

  1. I think it's great that there are people that are excited to see the film. Our point was mainly to say that it's ok to disagree. Just because we share the same profession, it doesn't mean that we have to agree all the time. Bloggers need to learn how to disagree with respect and learn how to take criticism. The best way that we can improve what we have is to figure out how we want to handle the criticism. Does the criticism have a valid point? Is it something we should act on or should we change our path?

    In the same way it's great that you're standing up for it because it's something you agree with. Way to go for standing up against the critics and controversy to use your voice in support.

    • I agree Bobbie, we don't need to agree with each other all the time, and I would not expect that to happen even with a tight-knit group of friends! We're all going to have our own opinions, thoughts, dreams, ideas – so expecting everyone to have the same thoughts and feelings about anything is just illogical.

      I did, however, find it very disheartening to see so many mean-spirited comments about the movie. People obviously didn't take the time to read Casey's post from over a year ago when this was just an idea, and unfortunately, in the fast-paced world of social media – people read 140 characters and react without researching and reading further before forming opinions.

      I am super excited to learn about the bloggers that Chris interviewed, and I am happy to have some of them on my list of Twitter friends and in my circles on Google+. I don't want any of the bloggers to become discouraged by the negativity.

      I don't want Chris to stop with the dream that he has started to turn into a reality. I am so excited to see what he does with the entire "American Blogger" idea. There will be more movies, there will be more diverse bloggers – but you have to start somewhere – and so he started with his wife's blogging friends.

      "Does the criticism have a valid point?"

      Honestly, I don't believe that it does. Every dream, every move that we take to think outside the box has to begin somewhere. This is Chris' starting point. Nobody has said this is it, this is all there is to American Blogger. If you aren't like these bloggers, you aren't an American Blogger. So no, the criticism is thoughtless and cruel, in my opinion.

      "Is it something we should act on or should we change our path?"

      As I stated in the post, "A true blogger will never attack the hopes and dreams of another, but will do everything in their power to help that person see their dream become a reality.” People need to realize that filmmakers, much like bloggers, are storytellers. Just as we sit down and write a series of posts on a topic, filmmakers do the same.

      I believe a change in attitude is in order in that bloggers need to be more open-minded and encouraging. If you want a chance to have Chris film you in your home and tell your side of the story – request an interview! If you don't agree with or care for the original group of bloggers that he interviewed – let him hear from you! Tell him, "I want to show you a different side of blogging that you didn't cover."

      If you don't step out of your comfort zone and take a chance, you never know what could happen – and that is a real shame. Only when we take that leap of faith and do something out of the ordinary for us do we learn and grow as human beings. After all, isn't that what our lives are about?

THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME TO COMMENT. WE APPRECIATE YOU!