Last night I attended the annual Cosmo blog awards – the awards are in association with Cosmopolitan magazine and are designed (in theory at least) to celebrate the best of blogging. In the run up to the awards, bloggers who enter are encouraged to drum up votes using #cosmoblogawards and from there, a shortlist is compiled.
So far so good.
Last night the event was held at No.1 Marylebone, there were some fantastic bloggers in attendance, it was clear that everyone had made great efforts to attend and online, prior to the awards, promote them on social media and create a buzz around the event.
I spent the evening with some great girls who had also been shortlisted in the sex & relationship category – both highly skilled bloggers who are committed to keeping their blogs fresh, current and relevant to the subject which they had been shortlisted.
When it came round the awards themselves everyone was encouraged to gather round a stage where the winners were announced.
I didn’t win but, before you shoot me down for ‘sour grapes’, (which incidentally this isn’t a case of – I have been highly commended in these awards before and can confirm that, aside from the ‘glory’ you get no recognition past the actual awards night – the Cosmo twitter account didn’t even follow me on twitter! So I certainly wasn’t relying on a second win to ‘boost’ my profile) Let me explain what I felt most let down by.
After the winners were announced I wanted to speak to a Cosmo representative – there were three members of staff there and I asked them how they judge the bloggers. The response was that the winners are chosen purely on votes, that the blogs aren’t read past the first page ‘to verify they should be in the category that they say they are’ when I questioned this I was told that they couldn’t possibly read all the blogs because they’d ‘be there forever!’
When I questioned this and pointed out that in their terms and conditions it said that the shortlisted blogs were chosen half through votes and half through a panel, they replied saying that that had been the case in the past but wasn’t now – that, this year, it had been 100% voters choice.
So let’s get this straight, Cosmo are running blog awards where they don’t actually read the blogs.
The winners are chosen solely on how many votes they get, i.e. how much they hashtag cosmoblogawards and promote the award. Because, let’s be honest, aren’t awards based purely on votes about promotion rather than merit.
It makes no sense to me and think it does all the bloggers who put so much hard work and time into their blogs a massive disservice.
I should state that those who won were no less deserving than those that didn’t and that my gripe has nothing to do with the individuals selected, it is about Cosmo basically using the blog awards for click bait – to promote their brand through the hard work and commitment of bloggers without even bother to properly read their blogs.
I left the awards feeling disappointed and let down, bloggers are all too often under-valued, under-recognised (and under paid!!) to find out that a brand who promotes itself as supporting the blogging community are using them to promote themselves left me disheartened and angry – and makes the awards a complete circus.
The blogs who won should feel proud of their achievement but those who didn’t should know that hey, it’s not personal – nobody even bothered to read your blog.