Because you know the world revolves around my opinion....
A few weeks ago, the bloggers on D.C. Metro Moms blog had some interesting news. We're being syndicated. The founders of Silicon Valley Moms Blog, and all its various regional offshoots, negotiated an agreement with the McClatchy Group to syndicate three to five posts a week from the SV Moms Blogs. The McClatchy Group selected the first three posts about three weeks ago. My post about Sexism in Advertising was one of them.
Here's the kicker: none of us, not even the founders of Silicon Valley Moms, are being paid.
I know that a few bloggers, some who are freelance writers, have opted out of the syndication on the SV Moms blogs. I can completely understand that. The syndication has no value to them aside from gaining name recognition or resume building. If you already have that as a freelance writer, why give your words away for free to print publications that normally pay you?
So what do I get out of an unpaid syndication of my words? Name recognition? Maybe. Although I doubt that I'll be syndicated so regularly that people will start demanding my posts! An ego massage? Maybe. It is nice to see your words, your byline in actual cellulose and newsprint. Resume building? Definitely.
For those of us who write (as opposed to Write) for fun, therapy, or recognition, the idea of being a freelance writer or (gasp!) writing a book is heavenly. I've been saying since law school that I want to be a Writer when I grow up. Granted, my job already involves a lot of writing but it isn't writing that feeds my soul. Of course, there's no guarantee that free lance writing or even writing a book would do that either. Publishers will only pay for what sells. And who wants to pay to read my narcissistic rambles?
I don't pretend to know the answer to the paid versus unpaid blogging and writing debate. I do know that business models for mainstream media are changing because of the blogosphere. People are fleeing traditional media for the web and many of the providers of news and information on the web are doing it for free. With print publication budgets plummeting, is it any wonder that MSM wants to get in on the free stuff?
I got my first hits on my syndicated article a few weeks ago, via my automatic "Lawyer Mama" Google Alert, from the Centre Daily Times in Centre, Pennsylvania and the Modesto Bee in Modesto, California. I've gotten more since then, but I'm too lazy to link them all. So clearly there is a market for my sort of writing, just apparently not enough to pay me.
Speaking of unpaid blogging, don't forget to read my review of Were You Raised by Wolves? over at Law(yer Mama) Review!