Some people won't like this post. Some people will think and/or accuse me of being bitter or jealous. Some people will think I'm and/or accuse me of being unsupportive; well, I'll get over it. Firstly I'd like to highlight that I'm very happy that so many people, bloggers in particular, are getting recognition for their hard work, especially as I consider many of said bloggers to be my friends. It's not often that the work of the plus size blogger is highlighted, particularly in the media, and even some brands like to pretend that we don't exist. Heck, a lot of folk like to pretend that fat people don't exist full stop.
The topic that I want to discuss is the British Plus Size Awards. I'm sure most of you know what it is, if not give it a google. Hands up, I attended the awards/pageant in 2013 (as I won two tickets in a raffle at Big Girls Paradise, which is run by the same person/company/team) and I attended the 2012 awards/pageant as an official blogger. I've also had a lot of friends enter the pageant over the years, and of course some friends have also been nominated for awards. I even put out a tweet and Facebook page post this year asking people to vote for me if they'd like to (I figured everyone else does so I may as well). That being said, my support and interest in this event has continued to diminish over the years and has now pretty much extinguished following the announcement of this years nominees.
Sounds pretty awful (of me), doesn't it? If you haven't now decided that I'm the spawn of Satan for daring to utter such words, I'll explain. There's been a lot of discussion as of late regarding the lack of diversity in plus size/fat representation, including within the blogging community. How is this relevant? Well, if you've seen the gallery of nominations for this years awards you'll hopefully know how. There is a distinct lack of ethnic diversity. At this point I'd like to firstly acknowledge my white privilege and limited knowledge in relation to this subject, and secondly to apologise if I inadvertently use incorrect or offensive terminology; I openly invite you to correct me if that is the case.
I'm not saying that all the nominees are White British as that certainly isn't the case, but there are very few people of colour (PoC). I know that the results rely upon individual nominations and perhaps as I didn't nominate anyone I don't have the right to comment in some people's view, but I felt I had to say something. Or, rather, I felt that I couldn't not say something; because not only do we need to recognise these things, we need to talk about it.
I'm not really sure where I'm going with this, I just felt like I needed to do something and wasn't really sure where to go with it, what to do, what to say and to whom; so, here it is. I'm not sure what to do about it. I'm not even sure there's anything I can do about it, bar the one thing I can do and that is to not remain silent, to not say anything.
So, there you have it; answers on a postcard, or a comment if that's easier. No, wait. One more thing before I go, a side note if you will. Asides from the above, it's also been highlighted (on the grapevine) that quite often the 'Best New Blogger' nominees aren't actually new. As much as the recognition is deserved, it irks me that those who are new bloggers are at a disadvantage of being in a category that includes people that would potentially have more views, more followers, and even perhaps more experience than them. Granted, previous experience shows that this doesn't necessarily equal winning, but, uh, well, it isn't equal, is it? Honestly, if it were to happen to me (ha), I'd say; "Hey, I'm really chuffed but actually I'm not a new blogger, can you amalgamate my nominations into [a more appropriate] catagory and then, if I don't come out in the top sixth, so be it, but at least it will give another blogger who hasn't been blogging for over a year the opportunity?" I fully expect the blogging mafia to be dispatched to my door after this one, but...#yolo, or something more appropriate and eloquent along those lines.