More rainbows or just stale vomit?

By Luna Jubilee  //  SLife  //  33 Comments

Maybe I’m cranky or my morning cornflakes were tainted but I can’t stop thinking about this Shopping Cart Disco SLSecret from two weeks ago.  Its #8 on the list.  Its about us, the fashion bloggers, being overly dramatic and in love with everything we receive. 

I’m putting out a challenge to all the fashion bloggers.  Stop with the rainbows and rechewing what is seen on the feeds.  Can we give honest opinions about things? Do we always have to say “I love” this or that?  I’m not saying to publicly bash products but rather don’t blog them. Talk to the creator, help them improve. Negative reviews are counterproductive and humiliating for the designer and yourself.

I have a slue of petpeeves.  Maybe its me taking this to heart or just being plain ol’ tired of seeing the same phrase of goodie-goodie-gumdrops about designers and their wares. We shouldn’t blog every single thing that is given.  Do you think we could crack open a therasaus every so often to find new words other than “love”?  Lemme help: adore, admire, appreciate, delight, fond … just to name a few.

If you love everything and live in the land of puppy dogs and fluffy kittens, please send me what you’re drinking with a landmark.  So yeah, maybe I’m tired of being lumped with bloggers who do in fact live in this sugary-ness. Sure, I’ve posted sweet posts. Lately, have I? Not sure as I would like to think I changed my writing style.

Ah, another gripe, while I’m on this roll, the phase “I’ve seen it on the feeds” needs to be eradicated or at least get creative.  I feel that the feeds have become one post after a repost after a repost. If you have seen your review copies already on the feed, talk about another aspect of the item(s), the designer, the store, etc.  Perhaps do a mini-interview to learn more about the designer and expand your fashion knowledge.  Taking pretty pics of yourself in the item(s) and then sugarcoating the verbiage doesn’t make me want to buy the product. It does make me scroll to the next feed item.  

Before I get flamed or whatever, take a moment and think this over. Lets do more and make the fashion feed something that it really should be: creative and unique.  I have things I know I need to work on to improve myself. Do you?

33 Comments to “More rainbows or just stale vomit?”

  • When time allows for a rap session and drawing board workout of the issues, yes.

  • Or other words besides delicious and yummy…we’re talking about clothes right?!?

  • I fall into the “love everything I wear” category, and proud. I will side with the gumdrops and kittens on this one, because RL is dark and dramatic enough without taking SL so damned seriously.

    ♥ and =^.^=

  • lol you guys are great!! Love the comments – thank you!

  • Achariya: I follow your blog and while you might be about “I love everything”, I also feel it’s justified because the stuff you blog is good! Correct me if I’m wrong, but Luna seems to be talking about sugar-coating crap. We’ve all seen enough of that, and frankly it’s patronizing that anyone trying to sell us junk would think we can’t tell what’s quality and what’s not. Nice post, Luna!

  • Thanks Rosie. I have to be honest, I don’t follow Achariya’s blog so I needed to really read to understand her side. Reading what I did, as brief as it was, I do agree. Achariya’s blog is solid. Its not “puppy dogs and fluffy kittens”. Well done Achariya … you made it to my Google Reader Feed (not many bloggers get there!) :))

  • Hmm google reader feed. I could do with filtering some of my more favourite blogs. Might have to work out how to set that up…

    Also Ach, your blog is great fun to read, you find cute and quirky things to show in a way that is creative and original. You can’t exactly attribute kittens and rainbows to your cyberpunk, slightly gothy/flower child style :)

  • Perhaps I fall into the Rainbows and Puppy stuff in your opinion, but I don’t really happen to think you or anyone else have a right to dictate the manner in which I blog or what I say about the items I blog. I am getting a bit tired of seeing this sort of criticism. You took the SLsecret thing to heart, I choose not to, becuase I don’t happen to find it constructive or helpful.
    Call this flammage if you wish Luna, but as a review blogger, your opinion is expected to be critical in some way, positive or negative.
    I do not consider myself a reviewer, and as I have said before, if I am wearing it, I find merit in it. Yes there are only so many ways to say you like something, but is it really so awful to be positive and complimentary?
    I think about my comments, I do sometimes point out things that might be done better, usually I take into account the length of time a creator has been doing it, the newer designers are cut a wider berth in many cases, they are still learning.
    As for commenting about having seen something I liked on the feeds, I think that is a compliment rather then a sheep like desire to be part of the flock. I try not to blog what is the newest hottest and latest fad, especially when designers blanket all bloggers with their review copies, but I cannot know what others are blogging every day, and if I happen to have a post ready to go (I take pictures a day ahead of time) I will not shelf it just becuase someone else has by chance blogged it. I don’t think everyone that reads my blog only sees it as a result of it being on the feeds. I may be wrong, but I march to the beat of my own drummer.
    My blog has come a long way in the year since I started, it is a very personal thing, and it takes many hours of my time. Sorry if that means I am self-indulgent by blogging things I love. I am not a cruel person, I do not choose to spend my time making others feel bad about something that they have invested time and talent in.
    ~ Ketsy

  • Ok.. I was writing my comment, and it became way too long for my liking, so I’, going to stick with my first two alineas:

    Part of the reasons (I think) why a lot of bloggers love and oodle and OMG, is because these days there are a lot of bloggers who’s native tongue isn’t English, and they may not have the range of words at hand to express themselves properly. I myself am one of them, although I rather avoid overly populat language, because it feels so fake to me. Whereas I think that my English is more than decent, sometimes I get frustrated because I cannot find the right words to point out exactly what I mean.

    So should blogging be a privilege for the Anglo community? I don’t think so. I’m less and less following the fashion feed. I’ve made my own, with google reader, and there are no omg, omg, wooot, wooot, love, love blogs on it.

  • Ketsy – See this is why I enjoy reading your blogs. Its direct and, like me, you enjoy the product. I think your passion and drive that you bring to your blog can be shared with other bloggers who do use the sugary-ness in a fake manner as Grazia speaks of.

    This blog post was intended to shed light on the topic of the feed is sliding – the quality of fashion posts are getting stale. Not many are taking the time (be it extra minutes or hours) to really do a solid review. Its more like tossing “I love it” out like confetti.

    I’m wanting to push the blogging community to give more – its just not pretty pictures and “omg”s and “woot”s. Give me more! Its time to shake up the feed and provide more than the sugar coat ’cause you got something to review.

    Its my soap box and I am completely understanding all sides to the issue … and thankful for all the comments!

    Thanks everyone!

  • Oh yeah – I forgot – no blogging is not for the anglo community. I’m just asking for more than the “fake” sounding reviews. I know the bloggers can say more than “love” and “omg” and “pretty” and rah-rah the designers to death.

  • My first and only language is English, but I still understand what you mean. I get stuck with words all the time. I’m no writer, and when I feel that I’m being redundant with my word choice I go to True writers have hard copies.

  • Ah, thanks guys. I admit something: if I think that something that a designer gives me doesn’t suit my style, I will let a different blogger write about it. This is no comment upon a designer’s skill, it’s simply just not me. I figure it’s my editorial call, eh? I wouldn’t be doing justice to their stuff if I just stuck it on. So…..I guess this means more ♥ and =^.^=, eh? Thank god I’m not a reviewer.

  • Like Grazia, English isn’t my first language and neither my second. I rarely speak English except when I am on vacations…
    Theasurus is not really helpful to me. There are some expressions I use in my native language that I don’t have a clue how to say in English. I wish I had more knowledge of the language to point out more stuff.

    I only blog stuff I like even thought I make a lot of posts there a lot of stuff that won’t gets blogged.

  • I used to be a “reviewer” and I eventually stopped for one major reason: I received many review copies, and very rarely was I excited about any of them. I was tired of always finding fault with everything I wore in my blog, and never having *fun* with what I was wearing.

    So, I stopped accepting review copies, and started wearing what I liked and what I thought looked good. Now, my blog has a lot more positivity, but it’s also a lot more fun for me to write.

    I am of the mind that a lot of the newer bloggers receive items, and then feel compelled to write something pleasant, and keep the negativity at bay, even if they may not like it. I once received review copies of something that I really liked, but I was very negative on the price. I never again receieved review copies by said designer, and while it didn’t bother me…it may bother bloggers who care more about what people think about them.

  • I’ve been saying this for at least 2 years. To be considered a “review” blog there has to be some sort of criticism in at least it’s basic definition. Critic comes from the Greek kritikós, “able to discern”, which in turn derives from the word krités, meaning a person who offers reasoned judgment or analysis, value judgment, interpretation, or observation.

    In the current state of the SL fashion review blogs, they have left out a key point of the symbiosis between creator, critic and audience, the reasoned judgment or analysis part.

    In any other artistic venue, constructive criticism offers not only advertising/promotion but a way for the creator to improve their craft and the audience some form of insight into the quality of the item. If an artist only hears the good parts, how will they know where to improve or the reason for it?

    A commenter here said: the newer designers are cut a wider berth in many cases, they are still learning. If they are still learning, isn’t it better to point them in a direction of learning instead of ignoring what could be improved?

    Personally, I think “pooping rainbows” about everything you “review” is just as bad as publically bashing something. It does nothing but stroke the ego of the creator. In fact, it makes the “reviewers” look like bumbling idiots who’ve been bought off with free shit and/or friendship. Not to mention angers readers who buy something on that advice only to find out it is in fact not the best thing to hit the grid. I personally stopped listening to “reviewers” when they consitantly pointed me to clothes with horrible seams.

    Since most businesses in SL rely more on repeat customers and word of mouth instead of new customers gained from press coverage, not telling the bad when there is some, is actually doing a disservice to all involved.

    Funny thing is is that most of the complaints about fashion reviewers is the sending of review copies bit. Every single industry does that in RL and there seems to be no issue with it. Food critics recieve the best meal and wine, music critics gets piles of cds, film critics get free advanced showings, and on and on. On top of all the swag, they actually get a salary.

    The problem is much deeper than the latched on rant of free shit and it’s swaying capabilities. Does anyone actually believe that with all the designers out there sending free shit, that all bloggers review it all? Of course not, there is not enough time in the day.

    A base problem is that anyone can (and most of the time does) take some pictures, get a free blog and call it a “review” blog while never actually reviewing anything. Sometimes they may add in words like “innovative” when its not. Of course not all are like this.

    Another base problem is the constant reposting of the same shit over and over. All sorts of stuff on the grid. We don’t need to see picture after picture of the same clothes on different avies. Of course this is going to lead to cries of favouritism.

    There is in fact a middle ground. If you find something you see no problems with, fine say that. However whats the harm in reviewing something that isn’t “perfect” but might have potential and giving constructive criticism?

    Granted, everyone has their own opinion of what is good and worth buying. And there are definatly some bloggers out there that should find something else to do. However, isn’t there enough people making a go at blogging that most people can find at least 1 they can agree with?

    That is unless the only point of “reviewing” is to make everyone like you.

  • I have to say, I totally agree with you Luna, I want to see what is good and bad and I would love to see a blog that tells you what is bad and actually have the guts to post it! I think most of us write something and then are to afraid of the backlash.

    Even though I have sadly fallen into the category of only writing about items that I find and love!
    I like to have fun with what I am wearing and buying, and I guess I am on of these people who love to share with everyone if I find something great!

    If you find one that does “love and hate” let me know! :)

  • This provoked me in a lot of ways. I’ll be blogging this soon, but I wanted to add my perspective to this conversation here.

    Van and I have been away from SL and the blogging scene for a few months and I’m returning with several review posts to share. All of them are complimentary and enthusiastic, like everything that we take the time to photograph and write.

    It may be just be because of my time off, but I don’t understand this new trend of criticizing someone’s style of blogging, particularly for being positive or reviewing something you think is of a lesser quality. It’s some-one else’s personal expression, hard work, and point of view that you’re attacking! Who has the right to judge taste level, sincerity, and completely subjective concepts like “quality”?

    I didn’t read the SL Secret, but I first noticed this whole “pooping rainbows” movement when I was browsing Efemera Bisiani’s posts, catching up on some of what I’ve missed with a beautifully photographed and stylish blog. A colorful post caught my eye, full of comment activity (I assumed) because of the great look – instead it was all related to a seperate blog post by JellyBean Madison “Walk of Shame – Bad Blogger, You don’t get to play!“, a point by point editorial. In it she criticizes the designer’s ability, questions his reviewers honesty and judgement, and is openly insulting to those who would disagree. I personally found it incredibly offensive and viscious, especially the cheap shots hurled at the creator. An honest opinion is one thing, but there is nothing constructive about that kind of criticism.

    Talking down to your audience, insulting your peers, that doesn’t make you an expert. People run their blogs for different reasons, in different ways, and of course you’re going to love some and hate the way things are done in others. I’m not even asking you to keep it to yourselves, because I love discussion and I’m curious what people really think about things – but keep some perspective! Your personal opinions about quality, about subject matter, they aren’t universal. Enough with the sarcasm, we’re all here for the fashion and no-one’s sense of style is so elevated that they’re able to speak for everyone. There is no standard of practices for the second life fashion community, and there’s room for us all to do what we love. Why spend so much time writing about what you hate?

  • It seems that every month someone waxes nostalgic for the good old days when the feed was so much better than it is now before the riffraff came along.

    Frankly, if you don’t like my stuff, don’t read it. I purposely only put the first photo and paragraph on the feed so folks like you can scroll right on by with one little page down. If that’s too much work, too bad.

    Like others I only post what I like and if I get a review copy that doesn’t thrill me, it doesn’t get blogged. If that’s pooping rainbows, well that’s better than talking trash.

  • wow! Great comments, thoughts and opinions. Keep ’em coming!

    I do yearn for the older fashion days and do remember those posts from such bloggers like Jelly. In the back of my mind for nearly every post are their words. Perhaps that’s what the underlying driver for this post? We need to revisit this topic every so often. Just by the comments left by you all and those who don’t but still have their own ideas, change is needed and hoping its on the horizon.
    I do encourage change and for you to blog your own thoughts. If you do, please send me an inworld IM with the link. I would love to read and help support the change!
    Thank you everyone!!

  • @ Luth:
    “A commenter here said: the newer designers are cut a wider berth in many cases, they are still learning. If they are still learning, isn’t it better to point them in a direction of learning instead of ignoring what could be improved? ”

    I said that, and let me explain what I meant by it. I meant that where I might be more critical of something made by someone that gets un-earned acclaim just by virtue of their NAME or charges more then their quality would suggest they should, a new designer whose work has minor flaws will earn praise but in a more balanced way, I may point out the area that is less then perfect, but I always recognize that there is a very steep learning curve. I still may like an item, but I never am overly complimentary if it is not warranted.

    People buy items I wear on my blog, they have told me as much, so I am careful to point out things they may not notice before purchase so that I don’t feel responsible for them purchasing something under my recommendation without understanding WHY I am recommending it (by blogging it). I do not blog just anything and everything, I do one look a day basically, and though I am no expert, I would not “blow smoke up someone a**” just to make nice, it serves no purpose.

    ~ Ketsy

  • Personally, I fall into the woot and omg category. I’ve been slated a million and five times in comments for either being too wordy, not wordy enough, too serious, too cute, wtsever the wonderfully brave and oh so ballsy anon’s feel like vomiting on me that week. Freestyle isn’t a review blog, and if I don’t like a freebie, I won’t post it. I don’t think it would be good form to bash a designer who’s giving something to us for free, but then freebie blogging is a whole other bone of contention for many!! I agree with Ach about RL being terribly dark and serious, my blogging, for me is part of my SL fun. It’s such a personal thing and means something different to each person who does it. What I’ve found so far, with Freestyle at least, we can’t win whatever we do, so I post and duck to avoid the crossfire!!

  • Hear, hear! I am so sick of not being able to vent my own truth without being bashed by the Fashion community, that we started a secret blog where my friends and I can write what we really think.

    I think it’s a shame that we have to do it in such a way, but we refuse to get banned or badmouthed everwhere in SL just for speaking our own mind. Thus the alt ava’s….

  • as someone who reads the reviews looking for new items to buy, I think there is a big difference between “this outfit looks like crap and shouldn’t be sold” and “although some may like this type of style, I find it’s not for me and would love to see the seams match up a bit better or possibly different color options.”

    One can be positive on critism (sp), offering opinions and ideas without bashing.

    There is absolutely nothing worse then looking at a picture going “ooh I like that” reading the review, seeing someone rave about it…going to buy it and being severely disappointed because of seams or whatever. And yes, it has happened so much in the past that I rarely will buy items if I see them all over the feed with only “this is absolutely wonderful” written until I physically get to see it on another person. Sometimes that means I miss out on some great items but that’s life.

  • Does this help? ;-)

    appealing, attractive, tempting, alluring, inviting, lovely, adorable, charming, enchanting, attracting, entrancing, delicious, palatable, tasty, appetizing, scrumptious, yummy, desireable, tempting, pretty, lovely, attractive, beautiful, handsome, nice, dear, sweet, cute, beloved, engaging, endearing, congenial, alluring, likable, winsome, elegant, graceful, dinky, sweetest, most charming, friendly, amiable, benign, bland, affable, taking, exquisite, delicious, delightful, heavenly, very tasteful, sweet, cute, appealing, lovely, adorable, divine, gorgeous, glorious, ravishing, cherubic, paradisiacal

    I totally stink at describing dresses/blogging, so I think ANY of you who has the guts to write a blog, is doing a great job.

  • lol @ Sascha – Thank you!! That was perfect! :) I will have to use some of those in my next post.

  • I agree with Misty. I’m not looking for bloggers to blog about things they don’t like. That would be a pretty drab post (oxy I know). I want bloggers to blog the things they like, but be critical of it at the same time. For example, you might love the textures and the idea someone came up with, but the sculpties they used might suck. SAY THAT!! As a blogger, if something is not up to par with the fit, inform us. PLEASE!! And what is up with people equating the words criticize and attack. They are not the same.

  • @Soublu383 – that’s exactly what I meant when I wrote the post. Go through the feed and see the sticky sweetness of the posts. I can see in the pics that the textures are poor or the quality is lacking or something is misaligned. Yet the blogger sugar coats the writing. Its sad that there is only a small portion of bloggers willing to not blog or help the designers or do their part to improve sl fashion.
    I don’t want my L$ to be wasted on a product that positively blogged … but turn out to be poor quality when I see it on my AV.

    I’m really excited to see that there is so many others thinking/feeling the same as I do … I’m really hoping that there is a change on the horizon. We owe it to our blogs, the designers that support us and the SL community. Thanks again for your comments and reading!!

  • The issue in saying you or anyone can clearly see that quality is lacking is that quality is purely subjective. For instance, you say the textures are poor – I may disagree or choose to wear it anyway because I like another aspect of the design, and focus on that in my compliments. Why does that make me an inferior blogger, a person with poor taste, or liar? If it’s not your cup of tea, if you see the flaws before you see the hard work and creativity, you’re entitled to your opinions – but why look down on those who disagree?

    The notion that more negative input somehow equals a better fashion community, and that a change is-a-coming, is judgmental and condescending at best. I’ve been designing on my own for almost a year now in preparation of opening a store, and I know firsthand just how much effort goes into each design. Personally, I don’t understand receiving a free copy of anything and complaining about it, let alone a work that a designer has labored over and entrusted to me to represent to others.

    If the mistakes are as noticeable as you say, then you’ve noticed them. If you didn’t notice a flaw from a blogger photograph, assuming it wasn’t photo-shopped, then it wasn’t noticeable. If you didn’t like the items, and want to see something better, scroll past! If you prefer blogs that criticize more often, there are plenty – but enough with the idea that the rest of should follow suit.

  • Thanks for the comment Candy. That’s what the post was about. Others following suit? hmm not sure about that. I would like to see more collaboration between the bloggers and designers. Provide the feedback – both ways. Don’t blog it because someone gave it to you.

  • “The notion that more negative input somehow equals a better fashion community”

    Not so much negativity as honesty. While you bloggers get tons of stuff for free, us common folk pay for these items with our hard earned money. So yes, more honesty equals a better fashion community.

    IMHO I think that bloggers, in general, are scared to say anything remotely negative because they fear they will loose their precious freebies.

    “Personally, I don’t understand receiving a free copy of anything and complaining about it, let alone a work that a designer has labored over and entrusted to me to represent to others. ”

    What do you think designers pass stuff to you guys for. I know that there are some designers that are overly sensitive, but I personally have more confidence in them.

    “I know firsthand just how much effort goes into each design.”

    Yes. I have tried my hand at making clothing and it is not easy in the least, but that doesn’t excuse anything. It also won’t make you any less of a person if you pointed it out.

  • I think most of us are enthusiasts, not reviewers, and our blogs reflect that, so perhaps the starting point is to stop thinking of bloggers as writing reviews of clothes. Now, if I were being paid as a reviewer and I had an assignment to write about a new dress from Store X, then I have a responsibility to review it as objectively as I can. But I don’t work for an SL magazine, no one pays to me review, and for the most part I buy my own clothes. So of course I’m going to write about things I like and be enthusiastic about them–why on earth would I buy and write about things that suck?

    As to the quality of things blogged, taste is subjective. I think it was John Hurt who had the best take on this after he was asked how he could be in serious Oscar nominated films and then follow them up with crap like King Ralph. Hurt said (in my paraphrase) that he was okay with a movie “as long as it works on the level for which it was intended”. I feel the same way about clothes in SL.

  • I’m a “new breed Blogger” I find all the comments here very constructive and helpful. Thank’s Luna for the post and everyone for all the informative comments. I’m a lover of Photography & Fashion in SL which is why I started my blog, I pay for all my clothes and blog what I love..oops I said I would also like to point out i’m not a reviewer or a blogger who gets tons of free stuff (dam what am I doing wrong).
    Seriously if it looks crap when its on me I won’t blog it. I have bought some designs only to find when I wear them they look awful instead of putting this on my blog (and before I even had a blog) I actually do write a notecard to the designer informing them of what I didn’t like and why.

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