Tuesday, 2 May 2017

3 Years As A Blogger & Counting

Three Down, How Many More Years To Go?

Some thoughts and points I Have realized As Hungry Bawarchi.


To be honest I don’t exactly know how my blogging journey began except that about three years ago, I found myself reading some articles on a food blog (I still follow that blog FYI) and told myself, "Even I like writing, I like reading, why not start a blog and share my experience with food with other like-minded people." Keeping that in mind, I started www.hungrybawarchi.com and here we are today.

Over the last few years, there have been a lot of things that I have learnt, noticed and experienced and they have been fun as well as annoying. In the beginning, it was a lot of fun to meet new people, eat at new restaurants and try different cuisines, but as time went by it turned into a routine. Today, I wish to bring to readers’ notice a few facts that they aren’t aware about, especially those who think that Food Bloggers are just free loaders who get to eat great free food all the time.

Below are some points that are for all the people out there right from fellow bloggers, to PR agencies to Brand Representatives. These points are nothing but the truth and how over the period they have made me realize some things. Most of the points are blunt and to be honest I dont care if you like it or dont. 

1. All PR Agencies care about nowadays is the numbers on your website. They dont give a damn about the quality of the article at all. Are you really that blind? These days numbers are something that can be easily purchased. Even I am aware that numbers matter but they should have some relation with quality as well. A new blogger comes up, has 10 posts and 100k followers – how is that even possible without buying followers? Use your brains for God sake.

2. To upcoming fellow bloggers and already existing ones as well, firstly welcome to the industry. At times, you should use some brains when you write about the food. You know small details about a single dish doesnt mean that you are a food blogger, the so called tag of a “Food Critic” that you are carry, it’s very easy to just write it in the bio, but have you really earned it ? I dont think so as its not overnight that you become a critic. Think before calling yourself one if you deserve to be known as a critic.

3. I know and agree that there are freeloaders. These people are there in every event, call themselves food bloggers without even writing a single article or without a single post. Moreover, some of them dont even have a page. Again here, first prove yourself before carrying the tag of the 'Food Blogger' around and flaunting it around.

4. Next come accounts that are crowd sourced where you do not have any original content of your own in the first place whereas some of you steal the content and dont even give the credits for the same. Half of the crowdsourced accounts who I have met, dont really know about food, but still run a Micro Food Blog.

5. Its not only crowdsourced accounts, but also the blog. If you are picking up a line from some blog, at least give them credits for it and even if you want to copy, dont just copy the whole damn thing, exact words, even the story leading to the post. Come up with some content of your own and original content. Take ideas from other blogs and websites, but at least write on your own.

6. I had recently got an invite from a restaurant to review it and I was quite surprised to see some details in the mail and they were as follows. 
1. Deliverables - 1 blog post, social media sharing within 10 days of attending the event. 
2. You get one drink on the house (can be alcoholic).
3. You get a 50% discount on the total bill upon flashing the invite. 
I was like seriously, you expect me to come, eat, pay my bill and follow your deadlines, I rather eat without the discount and write the honest review. Most brands believe that if you call them, give them free food and booze, you will get a good review. 

7. I dont get it why restaurants/hotels and brands do not take feedback positively. For example, once I had gone for a so-called promotion at a well-known hotel in Mumbai and was left disappointed so I wrote an honest review about it and it was not really negative but just the truth. Firstly, the PR agency calls you a hundred times reminding you that you need to write a post and that is annoying. Secondly, when you write and there is something they are not happy with, they ask you to change it! Really, why the hell should I change my opinion and reviews for you. 

8. To all the bloggers out there, this is just to tell you that, stop stealing content from people, build your own or come up with some ideas. My content is my content and I have worked on it. Its very easy to copy and paste it but difficult to create. This is one of the reason that at times I feel like not to blog any more. 

9. The brands and PR agencies, you think you call the bloggers for free food, free booze and you can get whatever done with them, give them deadlines, there are people who do it, but you need to understand something, that its a free world, a person should be given his space to write and not forced upon. If they are writing an honest review, do not pay them and ask them to change it.

10. The new trend, the PR agencies looking out for bloggers on Facebook, posting in some groups there asking for details and then when people comment, there is not a single reply. Why do you take the details in the first place? 

11.Next in the line is the press release mails. First of all, I dont get invited to the event, not that I want to get invited and taste the free food and get the free goods, then you spam my inbox with all the press releases you have in the world. What should I do with them, its not that you are paying me or inviting me so that I can do some promotion and publicity. If you are reading this article and are one of those people who flood my inbox, stop it right away.  

To sum it all up, all the brands and PR agencies, start thinking with your brains, believe in quality and not only the quantity. If the same continues, I dont know if I will be able to continue blogging for a simple reason, in the recent times, the genuine bloggers with good content are lost and there is hardly any value that they get.  


Lastly, no hard feelings towards anyone, but all the above points are just the truth, my opinions and most of the bloggers who are actually genuine will agree to them.  

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