Martha Stewart Threatened by Bloggers
So, as you may have heard, the blogosphere is in an uproar over a recent comment made by Martha Stewart during a recent interview with Bloomberg. And, if I was more of a craft, fashion or a recipe blogger, I’d probably be offended, as well.
Bloomberg: Is there an argument to be made that Social Media is a little bit in poor taste?
Martha: Well, I do, I do have a minor gripe about that too, because who are these bloggers? They’re not trained editors at Vogue magazine. I mean there are bloggers writing recipes that aren’t tested, that aren’t necessarily very good or that are copies, or are copies of everything that really good editors have created and done. So, bloggers create, kind of a, ummm, popularity. But, they are not the experts and we have to understand that.
Given the fact that Martha Stewart grew her media empire from the humble beginnings of a home-based catering business, one might think she’d be more understanding of why bloggers blog. Martha is known to be very driven and a perfectionist on top of that. It’s been said that her drive to be successful ended her marriage and put strain on her relationship with her daughter. (Rumor is that her daughter Alexis eloped when she married for the first time!)
But there is no doubt that she is a successful business woman. Hmmm..except for Martha’s minor issue of insider trading that landed her in the pokey.
In 2012 Martha appeared as a Keynote speaker at BlogHer’12 Conference in New York City.
There, her comments regarding Bloggers were much more positive (18:50):
Martha: She (Hannah Milman – crafter at MSO) agreed with me 100% and these are the adjectives we discussed this morning (describing bloggers). You must be personal, you must be passionate, you must be sharing, you must have an openness with your readers, or your consumers, whoever they are. You must also be able to amortize. And I love that ‘cuz hannah’s not, you don’t think that’s going to come out of Hannah’s mouth, amortization of the word.
Elisa: And explain what that means…
Martha: Well, money! Make money at it. Aren’t you all out there to make money at your blogs, sort of? Well, it’s not about making money, money. It’s about paying for your effort. You’re all intelligent women out there. You’re all trying to … make a living? I mean it’s, Its A Good Thing™ It’s good to be productive and earn and contribute.
(I think Martha meant monetize, not amortize.)
So why the change of heart, Martha?
The last 14 months (since her BlogHer keynote) have not been such a good thing. Martha broke her iPad (given to her by Steve Jobs!), her TV show got cancelled, magazine sales plummeted, layoffs at MSLO and Martha’s lawsuit with JC Penney and Macys
At the same time, Pinterest came of age, allowing the next generation of fashion bloggers, home cooks and crafters to showcase their talent with a link to their blogs. And I would venture a guess, many were inspired by Martha Stewart and her work. Many have grown up with Martha.
But, being successful for 20 years and existing in the privileged world she is part of, evidently, she doesn’t find this new generation of bloggers worthy.
I think Martha Stewart is starting to feel the competition and at 72 years old, is fighting to maintain her throne. Have you noticed her re-designed blog? Looks a bit a bit like Pinterest to me.. It still needs alot of work — it feels a bit clunky (maybe the effect of the layoffs at MSLO are showing?)
I still love me some Martha — I could have been there right on the couch with Alexis Stewart and Jennifer Koppelmann. Martha’s presentation is flawless, but it’s so much fun to laugh how ridiculous she can be.