You know you’re going to have one of those days sometimes right? Monday was one of them.
It was the Toddlers first day at his new nursery and he made it abundantly clear that he didn’t want to be there AT ALL. Pulling at the heart strings and sobbing as I dropped him off (he was fine in the end) nothing like a good dose of mummy guilt to start your day.
The Baby spent the entire day crying because he was so tired yet refusing to nap. Nothing pacified him. Nothing. I tried to feed. I tried to bounce. I tried wearing. I tried walking. I resorted to driving to have him fall asleep seconds before I reach my destination.
You know. One of those days.
Then I took to Facebook and a post caught my eye “To the Blogger Who Copied Me” now I love a bit of drama, I especially loved the whole #bloggerblackmail scandal between a blogger and a bakery that happened a couple of months ago, so I clicked. And I read. And in horror I realised it referred to me.
Now, I hold my hands up on the point that the post in question did help inspire my post. Sleep is a very emotive and very discussed topic when you have babies. I remember reading Charlie’s sleep post just before the Baby arrived and nodding along remembering the whole fourth trimester with the Toddler and knowing that this was in my future with the Baby. In turn it made me smile and think of another post I read when the Toddler was a dot that contained the gem that was “I burped in my mouth and it tasted like pear, I hadn’t eaten pear since lunch what is up with that?” which made me giggle. Then as all good posts have a habit of doing it got stored in the back of my mind and got on with the dramatic birth of the Baby.
Then the newborn days passed and he was still a pain sleeping. It got to him being four months old and I was still to share a hot meal with my husband without having my lump draped across me eating one handed. We headed back to the UK. Same issue. He didn’t want to sleep (he still doesn’t to be honest) and I started to compile my own sleep post, which began life as a list of reasons why he wouldn’t sleep and evolved to become the voice of the non-sleeping baby. Probably because in the back of my mind I had read these two fantastic posts from the baby’s point of view which made the posts more human. Gave them a voice. And so my post gained its own voice in the guise of my stubborn, adorable, none sleeping baby boy.
Now what I should have done and as I always try do with posts that I am inspired to write was to cite where I saw the original post. The same as I did when I wrote about the Toddler travel adventures or the Toddler-o’s Daddy. But I didn’t because when I started writing the post I couldn’t remember where I had originally seen the piece about fourth trimester and newborn sleep. I read a lot of posts. But, I’ve rectified this now and have cited the post on “Dear Mummy, I’m Not Sleeping Because…..
The other piece I really want to clear up is the piece around the viral messages. There has been some miscommunication on that blog post that makes me sound like I am a viral post hunting obsessive. I’m not. (Well not too much).
The post mentioned in the thread was about was this one on the wrong viral message not a thread created where I was asking how to make a post viral, I don’t think there is any winning formula other than writing great content or having great pictures that people relate to and want to share, that is then shared by the right people. Or of course a very negative, shock message. The post in question was on those messages that go viral where I lamented that all the negative messages go viral. The likes of the drivel Katie Hopkins spouts. In particular I was focussed on negative breastfeeding messages and I wanted to see positive messages going viral. Not necessarily my own. But good positive messages like the Breastfeeding in Combat Boots photo that has just gone viral on Facebook. The point on the post in the group that I made was I had seen only 2 positive viral posts which were the Dad Networks poo picture post and the sleep post in question and I asked had anyone seen any others.
The statement I made – which was meant in jest at my baby brain – about knowing that the Blogger was in the Facebook group but I couldn’t remember who wrote it. She came forward and at that point I could – and should – have made reference in my blog post.
I didn’t connect the personal name with the blog name.
I’m human and not to mention still sleep deprived. So it slipped by unnoticed until it was brought to my attention by a blog post.
So I fixed it. I apologised, privately and publicly. And then I thought about whether I should actually write this. And I decided I should. Not to score points or to complain but to give my side of the story, for where there is a story like this there is always another side.
Charlie made a fair complaint about the lack of link back to her post as an inspiration point of view (which has now been rectified), as in my eyes though the posts run along a similar vein (which is bound to happen in parenting blogs when you are writing about babies of similar ages, and let’s face it the sleep topic is one of the most commonly discussed issues amongst mothers) they are in effect different. And will appeal to different people. Which is probably another reason it slipped my sleep deprived mind.
The part that I didn’t like, and have addressed privately, is that the whole situation and quite frankly some of the downright nasty comments, could have been avoided if I had been approached directly. Fair enough if I had been approached and been a b*tch, then call me out all over the show. But I wouldn’t have been as I made a mistake. It’s not in my nature to upset anyone and I’m always the first to apologise if I’m wrong.
Because as my mother always says to me:
Treat others how you want to be treated yourself
Which, to give credit where credit is due, is actually ripped off from the bible.
So, as we have all learnt from this episode to consider who you are writing for, why you are writing and that you may inadvertently be “copying” someone then maybe take a second before you hit publish. Maybe make sure you’ve cited anyone who has truly inspired you.
But whatever you do, don’t let it make you afraid to write, There are an estimated average of 2.73 million blog posts published EVERY day, an estimated 152 million blogs in the blogosphere and honestly, it’s virtually impossible to write something that hasn’t been written before. Does it mean that you’re plagiarising? I don’t think so as a wonderful blogger said to me – we all inspire each other that’s the joy of blogging.
And if you see someone you think has “copied” you? Get in touch with them first, it could have just been an honest mistake.
Now to give fair warning, the next letter that the Baby is going to write to me is a list of all the reasons he is crying….. guess what stage we’ve reached now….