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This started off as a comment on Sarah Tanner’s blog, then I decided that if I was going to write an uncharacteristically long-assed comment, then it would serve me better to put it on the blog. Shall I go with numbers too? Yeah, let’s do that.

The question was:

Does Running An Ad Equal Product Endorsement?

1. To the question, my answer is yes. More or less. If there’s an advert on your blog, then I think the implication is that you as the blog owner, whilst not necessarily endorsing the product, would appear to at least not have a problem with the ad. This may not be tacit approval, per se, but conclusions can and will be drawn by others who see the ad in question. No amount of involved ethics ruminations are going to change that.

As a blog owner, you either give a rat’s arse about the speculation or you don’t, but you shouldn’t be surprised if people do question the fact that the ad is there.

2. The SBs may not be The Guardian or The New York Times, but here in Romanceland, they are the equivalent of those two publications, which means that what they do and say are taken notice of.

I think that the majority of us are aware that were, either the NYT or The Guardian, to run an ad for somebody like, let’ say Robert Mugabe or Bin Laden, there would be widespread condemnation, and yes, people would probably call their ethics and morals into question. The people running the newspapers themselves may not be in step with the above named individuals, but do we really think that’s going to stop people pointing fingers at them and questioning their decision to run the ad in the first place? Not in this world Dearies.

3. Now as for my objection to the ad itself. Ann Somerville was partially correct in implying that my ire re the SBs posting the ad, was mostly to do with disliking the woman. I freely admit that I do think she’s pretty vile, and coupled with the fact that she writes incest, and tries to pass it off as romance, well, in my opinion, she’s no better than the Victoria Laurie’s and Deborah Anne MacGillivray’s of this world. Two other people, whose presence on the SBs website would have shocked and stunned me.

4. The other annoying factor for me was that the ad was posted on a romance site that I like and admire. That’s the source of the keen disappointment that I felt, I think. Had the ad been posted on, let’s say for the sake of argument, Ann Somerville’s site, would I have given a shit? Hardly. Surprised maybe, but certainly not affected beyond surprised indifference.

5. Lots of people felt that the SBs simply wouldn’t have time to vet all the people who advertised on their blog, and that they didn’t feel that they should have to. Well let’s just agree to disagree on that shall we?

6. There was a lot of talk about censorship, and it was generally agreed that for the SBs to ban CS’s book because of the content would have been wrong. Well, I don’t talk too much about censorship on this blog, because I have what may some may call conflicting viewpoints. I agree that generally censorship is bad, but if I were Queen, I wouldn’t hesitate to ban a book based on its content, if I thought it warranted it.

I don’t actually believe that all censorship is bad, just the ones that I personally object to. I suspect that a lot more people, deep down, probably feel the same way, but wouldn’t own up to it, which is fine, since we can’t all be agitators.

I also happen to believe that had CS’s book been called ‘How To Take The Homosexuality Out Of Your Child’, I think the SBs would have practiced some censorship of their own, don’t you?

7. A lot of people argued that the SBs shouldn’t have to take the ad down. I say this to those people: Shut up. I mean it, shut up, because nobody, and I mean nobody, said that they had to take the ad down. I never asked them to, I never expected them to, and neither did Sarah Tanner. Do I need to repeat that for those who are hard-of-reading? No? Good.

As I remarked to AL when I wrote the post, I expected radio silence, and that’s what I got.

8. As for the question that SuperWendy and SarahT raised re would there have been more of an outcry had the ad been on an author blog, or somewhere like AAR or RT? Yeah, I believe so. I know at least four people who hesitated posting their comments, because they didn’t want to be seen to be having a go at the SBs. The reluctance was mainly because they personally liked the ladies, but their popularity here in Romanceland was also a factor methinks.

Anybody who truly believes that the ad being on the SBs site had nothing whatsoever to do with some of the reticence within The Rom Land Massives to discuss this issue are bathing in denial. Truly.

9. My conclusion re all of this is that the venue mattered to me, and it still does. DA Jane and I have often pondered on the fact that Dear Author is held to a much higher standard than a lot of other romance bloggers.
As a blog owner, being held up to higher standards than anybody else would piss me off no end, but I’m aware of the difference that projected image and perception makes.
In my opinion, DA’s projected image, consciously or unconsciously, is a professional one, and so perhaps that makes it harder for them to say things that I perhaps could say, and nobody would bat an eyelid at.

The SBs, whilst not having the same professional image as Dear Author (I think it’s the gratuitous use of the colour pink on the website that does it) still do have an image that they ‘have’ to live up to.

Here in Romanceland, I see them as major representatives of the genre, and their reputation has been borne out of the some of the crusades (for want of a better word) that they’ve embarked on. As a bystander, I have witnessed their passion and sense of justice not waiver (publicly at least), even when they’ve been the target of immense attention, speculation, and anger.

In my mind, I think I possibly made the mistake of elevating them to a higher status than was deserving, and I forgot that actually in the end, they are no different to myself, in that they have things that piss them off, and things that don’t. I fairly or unfairly expected them to do what I would have done had I been in the same position, which was silly, because, some of the things they feel passionate about, wouldn’t induce me to bat an eyelash.

I’m still disappointed by their choice to put the ad up, but as somebody quite fabulous once said, it’s their blog and they can do what the fuck they want to with it.

By the way SarahT, sailing against the perceived masses in Rom Land is difficult, but I think it’s mostly admirable, because at the very least, people know that you have the courage of your convictions, and that you aren’t a flaky-fence-sitter.

No offence to flaky-fence-sitters of course.


  • I’m unsure who the perceived masses in Rom Land is. Clearly you are a major blog. Why can’t it be said that it is those who are unconcerned about the ad at the SB site are sailing against the mass/mob? I’ve certainly seen more vocal support for your position than for the position I have taken.

    There are a lot of things that piss me off on blogland that I don’t blog about. I was highly offended when Lori Perkins was allowed to blog what amounted to an ad for Ravenous at Romancing the Blog. Where was the blogland ire there? I choose not to blog about it because I figure I just won’t read RtB anymore unless someone sends me there. Ravenous also advertises within RT and elsewhere. There is one epress that I believe publishes m/m incest and advertises on several sites around the web if incest is the hot button.

    There is are many commenters and authors who are friends and, dare I say, supporters of Cindy Cruciger but I’ve not blogged about them, asked them to take CC off the blogrolls (isn’t that a tacit endorsement). So to make the claim that romancelandia would have been up in arms over this issue if it wasn’t at SBs doesn’t seem to have a lot of support given the past non action of the rom land.

    You appeared, in your comments, to be wanting some kind of response and also appeared to be upset that there was not one. What kind of action did you want taken? Would there have been any response that would have been acceptable to you, short of removing the ad?

    At what point are we blog owners responsible for the content that appears on the site? I’ve had at least one complaint about a First Sale letter that appeared on the blog. As Robin said, by participating at Access Romance or Romancing the Blog or some other blog, are we then condoning on what those sites host as well?

    Also, I view plagiarism, stalking readers, and the like very different from incest fantasy. Let me make clear, I don’t like incest fantasy and I don’t find it romantic and I don’t like it but unless it involves issues of abuse/consent how is it unethical? Ethical accusations are very serious, as you as a business woman know. It’s one thing to say “I don’t like this” and another to say that someone is being unethical by hosting an ad.

    Finally, when you say that the SBs hosting of this ad will make it hard to take them seriously when they are
    ranting about ethics, etc., what is it that you mean by that? Aren’t you suggesting with this comment that you find their actions to be hypocritical or at least inconsistent with prior positions? And if so, how? In other words, have they stood up against certain content in the romance industry like you have? Have they railed against authors gunning for readers like Dear Author? How exactly is hosting an ad for Chancery Stone opposed to anything that they have espoused in the past?


  • Well put thoughts there, Karen.
    You know, I do feel there’s a difference between outright censorship and discrimination and politely preserving a chosen atmosphere at your turf. Its like when you see the sign, “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone at any time.” at a place of business. Doesn’t mean the owners are jerks, but that they want to keep a certain tone. Imagine Pat Boone wanting to set up a consignment booth in the local Hot Topic. Now I’ve got no problem with ole Pat singing and praying wherever he’s welcome, but what kind of message does that put out? One to make the regular customers running for sure.


  • Let me add one more question for you all who find incest so distasteful. How do you feel about the Punishment of Nicollet by Evangeline Anderson, published by Loose Id? To me that is a daddy / daughter fantasy if there ever was one.


  • Abby Sun Buffalo-Hawkins
    August 13
    5:35 pm

    I don’t care what she writes. I do find her a distasteful human being, period. I can’t stand her hatred directed against Nora Roberts, her bullshit artsy fartsy rhetoric all over the net, the inflated ego, the verbal abuse of readers and critics alike, the pretense of professionalism. The reaction I have to her ad at SB is the same I’d have at seeing a pen-pal ad for Bernie Madoff in the financial section of my favorite paper. If my paper ran such an ad they’d lose my respect, too.


  • sallahdog
    August 13
    5:49 pm

    I don’t have a blog, so make of my opinion what you will.

    I don’t hold blog owners accountable for the ads on their site. For one thing often blog sites add their own ads to blogs, you don’t always have control of that.

    Even if you do have control, there is no way to please every person who visits your site. An Ad for Planned Parenthood would offend some, an ad for feminine products would offend someone else,,, you cant win.

    The ‘sweet’ romance folks would be offended by MOST of the ads or reviews on this site or DA or SB, are you supposed to worry about them? Hell no…

    I am an adult, I think I can safely decide whether or not to click on a link, or decide to buy a book, without the “content polce” stepping in…


  • As a fence sitter:

    1. How many times does someone have to say that a blog owner can put up any advertising they want. Can we just all agree on that and quit repeating it?

    2. SB’s is a huge industry blog and as such it will always get more scrutiny than say my little personal blog. It comes with the territory. I think they can deal with the criticism just fine and live to see another day.

    3. Why is the question about unsavory advertising become about a listing of other books and authors with controversial subject matter? The question Karen posed wasn’t about the content of the books many of us have read or tried at one time or another. As I understand it her question was whether we should (do) hold sites like SBs to a higher standard because of our (readers of the blog) perception that they are champions of all that’s good and righteous.

    4. I hate the ads all of them. I have a decent desktop and laptop, but they still make loading the pages tedious and the sites and posts sucky to read. So for me, it’s not just that ad I don’t like any of them. I wish I could DVR my feeds so I could fast forward through those on my Reader like I do with TV.


  • sallahdog
    August 13
    6:15 pm

    As I understand it her question was whether we should (do) hold sites like SBs to a higher standard because of our (readers of the blog) perception that they are champions of all that’s good and righteous.

    That is your (or maybe Karens perception)… For myself I dont feel they are any “better” or good and righteous.

    Is this perception because of the plagarism thing? If so, I look at it like this.. I have some hot button issues of my own, they generally don’t match up with the blogs I read for fun.. I don’t expect my hot buttons (foster care system is my main one) to match up with others. I also reserve the right not get all caught up in someone elses hot button…

    Do I get why this book, and this author tweaks Karen? sure… I don’t share her ire (ok I admit it, the net would be a boring place without the batshit nuts people to read so I NEVER want them to go away)…

    On the SB site probably what has bothered me more, and why I hadn’t been reading there for awhile, was all the book promotion going on (which is completely understandable, but I don’t find it interesting)…


  • Karen Scott
    August 13
    6:24 pm

    Perceived masses means just that. I used the word perceived, because as you know, there are times, when it feels like nobody is on your side, and that’s the hardest time to stay resolute in your belief. The reality may be different, but one’s perception might not always marry up with reality.

    As for the endorsement issue, if you blog on Access Romance, in my opinion, it is an endorsement of sorts, you can argue about to what degree is it an ENDMT, but to me, it says that you think they’re good enough for you to write a column for.

    Unless the subject matter is based on how terrible Access Romance is, I am going to find it difficult to see you writing for them as anything else but an ENDMT.

    Re my expectations from my post, I didn’t really expect action, but I was disappointed by the lack of commentary, I admit. And no, actually I didn’t expect them to take the ad down, because from a practical point of view, I knew that that they probably wouldn’t be able to do anything about it, even if they wanted to.

    I made the mistake of sub-consciously elevating the SBs to a higher status in my mind, which was unfair to them. My prejudices aren’t necessarily theirs, and vice versa.

    Re the ethics comments, well to me, when you cut to the heart of everything, ethics will always be about right and wrong, and in my opinion incest is fundamentally wrong, however my words did imply that I thought the SBs acted unethically by placing Stone’s ad on their website, and that was unfair. I don’t apologise for questioning their ethics in the first place, but to level the actual charge without any other evidence other my own prejudices, wasn’t right and proper.

    As for not taking future crusades as seriously, well that’s because I no longer feel that connection to them that I did previously. I made erroneous assumptions about their beliefs, based on their previous record. A record as it happens, that may have been totally embellished in my mind, with no basis in reality. That higher status thing again, I guess.

    I guess it’s like going on a date with Will Smith. Before you go on that date, you watch every film that he’s ever been in, and you just can’t wait to meet him. In your mind, he’s this dashing, brave and wonderful human being who loves animals and children.
    You meet him, then find that he’s as dull as dishwater, he hates children, and thinks that animals are a nuisance and his breath smells. Somehow that dose of reality means that you can never look at his work the same way. Forever more, he’ll always be the guy who hated children, had smelly breath, and was really boring, rather than the perfect human being that your mind had built him up to be.


  • @Karen Scott – I understand it all now. I do think your reaction makes total sense. It’s like how I feel about people who support RR or Cindy Cruciger. I look at those people differently and I judge them differently, fair or not.


  • How do you feel about the Punishment of Nicollet by Evangeline Anderson, published by Loose Id? To me that is a daddy / daughter fantasy if there ever was one.

    I thought it was the “typical” ingenue/legal guardian seduction ala Barbara Cartland with a young but modern female lead (making it way less creepy) and some BDSM thrown in to keep the old horse from smelling like an old horse.


  • maddie
    August 13
    7:40 pm

    First this is a statement on their website:

    A website that reviews romance novels from a couple of smart bitches who will always give it to you straight.

    Sorry but stories about incest are not even close to romance, erotic romance or pushing the boundary pf romance it’s just plain smut that you find in the closed section of a Vid Store or something you can order through Adam Or Eve website.

    As for them taking that ad shame on them, I say this because this an author that has behave badly in the pass, so CS gets rewarded for bad behavior, when SM thenselves have called out others for behavior similar or worst, so where does that leave SB’s in the future in their “callouts” on other authors or even in their reviews with sexual scene that kind of push the limits, because them taking that “ad” is an endorsemt of sort, because it’s on their site period.


  • Karen Scott
    August 13
    7:45 pm

    @Jane That’s a great way of explaining it. That’s just how I feel.


  • maddie
    August 13
    7:48 pm


    JANE SAID: How do you feel about the Punishment of Nicollet by Evangeline Anderson, published by Loose Id? To me that is a daddy / daughter fantasy if there ever was one.

    I thought it was the “typical” ingenue/legal guardian seduction ala Barbara Cartland with a young but modern female lead (making it way less creepy) and some BDSM thrown in to keep the old horse from smelling like an old horse.

    I have to agree with you there was NO BLOOD TIES between
    the two because Nicole mom was a foster sister to the hero and from what I remember the mom/foster sister didn’t even live there with the hero’s family for long maybe a year at the most.
    And they did not even keep in contact with each other after she left, so there wasn’t even a sisterly bond.

    For me it came across as a more erotic old Harlequin book.


  • maddie
    August 13
    7:56 pm

    May also add would the SB take an “ad” from NAMBLA if they wrote a book about their beliefs hidden behind their romantic musings of boy/man love?


  • I thought I commented on this on the first post but it was either spammed, you censored me! or my computer ate it. LOL although I doubt I am one you are talking about as far as “fence sitter” or afraid to speak up.

    1. Is an interesting question all the way around and one I have never been about to answer for myself. So don’t think I can answer it for other blogs. Do ‘I’ see something on a blog and think of it as an endorsement – no. I am cynical.

    But I think many others do, as much as I ‘think’ it SHOULDN’T be an endorsement, I would feel like it is on my blog. In this case? I can’t make up my mind for myself, so I can’t get worked up about someone else. Of course I am selfish and there is the fact I look at everyone has having a ‘blog’ and have never held anyone up to a higher standard or expected more of their blogging style.

    4. totally agree

    5. I was suprised for totally diff reasons. I admit I don’t pay attention to the ads but had assumed they would have their pick of who to take because there was shock a high demand. So picking a self published author calling her incest story ‘romance’ seems an odd pick, unless they wanted to help promote it. Unless it was for the money and the pickings were slim, it is a down economy can’t blame them in that.

    Then again who knows maybe they take everything as long as it meets whatev their guidlines are dunno. I still go with that it is their blog… ::shrug::

    Didn’t see a number but this one but I agree that SarahT’s post was great.


  • Does Running An Ad Equal Product Endorsement?

    For me, I would have to admit that it would certainly feel that way. I run my blog through LiveJournal, and if I didn’t pay the yearly fee, I’d have to run advertising. I wouldn’t really have any control over what the content was). But regardless of that, I would feel as if I were endorsing it- or perhaps more accurately, that other people would feel I was endorsing it.

    I was uncomfortable with the thought. But that’s just me. Perhaps the SB feel differently.


  • By the way SarahT, sailing against the perceived masses in Rom Land is difficult, but I think it’s mostly admirable, because at the very least, people know that you have the courage of your convictions, and that you aren’t a flaky-fence-sitter.

    Agreed. Although I didn’t agree with some points you and SarahT made in previous posts, I admire and respect SarahT for holding it up well against a tide of fellow bloggers including me.

    (I didn’t expect any less from you, Karen, so you don’t get a ‘You’re Awesome, too!’ shout from me. :D)


  • Just some food for thought. My ad is directly below the one in question on the SB site. (Oh joy.) I booked that ad at least 9-10 months ago and at the time I inquired about it, SBSarah told me it was the very last available slot they had for this entire summer. It was a “rotating” slot, shared with another advertiser. I was under the impression that the non-rotating ads are even more popular and sell out even further in advance.

    To me, that says the ad was booked long before mine–i.e. last fall or earlier. Meaning it could well have been bought and paid before before this whole mess started, when nobody had heard of C Stone. The name simply might not have set off any bells and I doubt Sarah or Candy had ever even considered that they might need to “research” their own advertisers. (My mind wouldn’t have gone that way. Now, yes…before this, no.)

    Accepting money for a paid ad, then trying to cancel the agreement could potentially have landed the blog owners in some kind of legal wrangle, could it not? And I’m not any kind of libel expert, but coming out with any kind of statement against their own paying customer could have tripped them up legally, too, couldn’t it?

    I think the SB’s have landed in the middle of a sucky situation. Damned if they did, damned if they didn’t. I am sure it was a big lesson learned, not just for them but for any blog that takes paid advertising. But it’s just not something I would ever hold against them.


  • Myra Willingham
    August 13
    10:10 pm

    I don’t see SB as good or righteous, either. They can be downright hateful to some authors and mean-spirited to others. If the author is a buddy of theirs you can bet that author will get preferential treatment. I really don’t care but that is the perception I have of the blog. Hell, I only visit it when they have funny covers or videos on there. Otherwise, I don’t bother.

    That said, I think they should take ad dollars from any and everybody regardless of their predisposition for being controversial. That’s their right and it doesn’t matter who agrees or disagrees with their policies. All this hullabaloo over whether or not SB should have put the ad on their blog is giving that author more publicity and promotion than she might otherwise get. I bet she’s eating it up like a pig in slop.


  • DS
    August 13
    10:24 pm

    I did a cliched snort of Pepsi up my nose when I realized what that ad was about. She’s been a joke for years and if you want more of the story– http://wiki.fandomwank.com/index.php/Chancery_Stone

    I also don’t see ads as endorsements.


  • DS
    August 13
    10:32 pm

    Oops, sorry, I should have started reading at the beginning of the story. See you already have the link.


  • I get people disliking the author and I get that it isn’t really romance, but I don’t blame the SBs. If I were queen, I might not read certain book, I might not promote certain books, but I’m of the mind that a writer can author anything they like and let the chips fall where they may, and that readers are allowed to read whatever they like, as long as they don’t follow it with dangerous behavior.

    As obnoxious as CS is, and we all know she’s plenty obnoxious, she is acting professionally in this action. The SBs would have a right, imo,to reject the ad if they think it doesn’t fit and ask her to get her promo-yas elsewhere. But that’s their choice, either way, and it doesn’t make me think less of them.

    I don’t think they endorse all the books. The ads exist for me as this eye candy that occasionally makes me curious, but I’ve never though their presence was a recommendation.

    Personally, I think the author would do much better if she coupled the ad with being somewhat likable.


  • sallahdog
    August 14
    1:09 am

    It’s like how I feel about people who support RR or Cindy Cruciger. I look at those people differently and I judge them differently

    What would you call support? I post occasionally on CCs blog, usually to completely disagree with her (I try to do it respectfully)… I have had people tell me in email that even posting on her site means I “support” her.. Since Karen agreed with this statement, I would then assume that my posting on CCs blog would be seen as supporting her, whereas I see it as finding her interesting (even if I completely disagree with her version of events in bloglandia)…. I also like her stories on life in Florida, just like I love it when Karen talks about England (ehh, I live in Kansas, probably the worlds most boring place)…


  • The difference between incest fiction and NAMBLA is that one is fiction and the other is not. I am not sure why fictional murder and abduction are okay but incest or puppy kicking (or animal mistreatment in general) is treated as if any fictional occassion is tantamount to endorsement and advocacy.


  • I made the mistake of sub-consciously elevating the SBs to a higher status in my mind, which was unfair to them. My prejudices aren’t necessarily theirs, and vice versa.

    Yes! You’ve voiced what I subconciously thought. I made the mistake of assuming the SBs’ ethical stance on incest was the same as mine, as I’ve agreed with them on many issues in the past. This was unfair.

    As I think I’ve made clear in my post and elsewhere, I don’t think an ad is just an ad. This is my opinion and I don’t expect everyone to share it. This doesn’t make it any less valid.


  • medumb
    August 14
    8:51 am

    I think I have stated my opinion before? But not fussed by the issue, don’t look at ads and not really seeing the ethics argument.

    But do have to agree with Myra, that the hullabaloo is doing a lot more advertising the book then the one ad.


  • maddie
    August 14
    12:20 pm

    @ veinglory :The difference between incest fiction and NAMBLA is that one is fiction and the other is not. I am not sure why fictional murder and abduction are okay but incest or puppy kicking (or animal mistreatment in general) is treated as if any fictional occassion is tantamount to endorsement and advocacy.

    What I posted is a what if a believer of Nambla just as CS is a believer of INCEST because why would she protest that their in nothing wrong with it just like Nambla, and I pretty sure Nambla members has written their own stories on some website that support their beliefs.

    As for the mistreatment of animals in books, just as children are innocent so are animals that is why the outcry when they are tortured they having no voice (to speak of).

    Murder and abduction in books is something that some authors use to move the plot along, and the characters doing such things in the books are the villains, and do get what coming to them, where as incest in her CS’s books, or even in CL’s are supposed to be hero’s and just loving on your sibling in a sexual way really have no Heroistic qualities in my book or in romanland.


  • Forgive me if I’m wrong, but the SB’s also advertised Ravenous Romance for a month and there was no outcry. I was mightily surprised.

    As Leslie pointed out, those slots are very popular and hard to get. That means, to me, that they can be choosy about who advertises with them if they want to be. Does it surprise me that the ad is there? You betcha. I’d really love to hear from them on their views on advertising. I’m hoping that once the month is up and the ad has run it’s contract, they will speak out on their policy.

    Does it bother me that the ad is there? Only in that it could have been used by an author whose books I’d actually want to read. A book that lives up to the advocacy that SBTB has practiced about romance novels. I mean, they have become spokeswomen for romance novels. They wrote a book about it! And if a reporter doing an article on them checked out their site–well, there is the antithesis of romance novels, Chancery Stone, advertising there. The potential for embarrassment for the genre is quite high.

    If they were just two bloggers, it would be different. But they aren’t anymore. They have cast themselves into the role of spokeswomen for the genre. They’ve been interviewed regularly by the media on behalf of romance novels and have written a book and toured on the premise that they think romance novels are awesome. By putting themselves in that role, yes, I do think their standards for their advertisers should mesh with their stated platform.

    Just my opinion.


  • @ Julie Leto: Robin mentioned the RR ad in SarahT’s thread, but I confess that I didn’t see it–though it is quite likely I visited SBTS more than one while it ran.

    Which begs the question, if I don’t see it, how can I be shocked/outraged/surprised/offended/indifferent to it?

    Evidently, I can’t be any of the above if I don’t know the ad is there *shrug*

    I have to disagree with you, Ms Leto, on this:

    But they aren’t anymore. They have cast themselves into the role of spokeswomen for the genre.

    I do not think that the SBs have cast themselves as anything as much as they have become such in many a blogger’s eyes–and there is a huge difference, from where I sit.

    They are successful (if we measure success as attention from media outlets, book deal, what-not) and that has brought a whole host of quite likely unintended consequences to them. It is not their doing if I expect something from them that is not in their plan/make up/principles/what have you.

    Which brings me to what both Karen and Jane said way up-thread: this kind of thing tend to change how I view the people involved.


  • Masha
    August 14
    7:50 pm

    I remember the RR ad. I was really surprised to see it there. But I remember it running about the time that RR launched (I could be wrong about this) and thought that maybe the SBs and the rest of Romanceland were giving RR the benefit of the doubt. Since Karen and AL didn’t blog about the ad, I thought it was just me that really objected to it on SBTB.

    After the RR ad, SB Sarah blogged about a publishing program (I think it was a POD start-up, but don’t remember and can’t be bothered to find the link). She thought it was a great idea. I thought it was the sort of thing that Writer Beware would warn authors to avoid and I think some of the commenters agreed with me.

    So I’m not outraged, but I think that after the Cassie Edwards spectacular, I and a lot of people thought the SBs were ethics crusaders in a way that they are not. This expectation isn’t really fair to the SBs, but I think it’s normal since most of us only know them online and not in real life.


  • Masha
    August 14
    7:54 pm

    Oh, and on:

    They have cast themselves into the role of spokeswomen for the genre.

    I wouldn’t agree with this, except for their book. That says to me that they want to be more than “just bloggers,” that they are seeking a wide public role as at least Romance pundits, if not spokeswomen. Blogs can become popular overnight, but a book deal means they’ve got (and want) authority of some sort. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with this.


  • Okay, I’m apparently a little behind here- what is Ravenous Romance, and why would anyone have expected some kind of outcry?


  • West, if you go to Dear Author and do a search for Ravenous Romance you’ll get a lot more background, but here’s my version of the nutshell:

    RR = newish digital publisher that sells smut labeled as romance, thereby taking advantage of the only segment of publishing that’s actually growing.

    Hope that helps.


  • AL, I’ll go check that out. Thanks for the help.


  • I’m quite simply horrified. And poor Jane actually read those.


  • medumb
    August 15
    4:36 am

    I am with AL on the SBs status, because they have a pretty website, with a snazzy name, a lot of traffic and they are good to interview, they are being used as spokeswomen by the mainstream media. They are just personable opinionated – I still can’t write bitches without thinking it will be read as an insult.. lol

    Their book doesn’t make them spokeswomen, it makes em die hard fans. I don’t consider every fisherman who has a book out is a spokesman for fishing. (Don’t know about US, but we have fifty million fishing books here LOL)

    BTW – Out of general curiosity, does anyone have any figures on the click through on those ads? not CS one, just general.


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