emma's thing And the "What Your Workout Attire Says" Post

I never do this. That is, I never feed into the negative responses any of my writing may or may not solicit. After all, I heard once that if you don't have haters, you're not doing it right. However, this one article has continued to serve as a sharp ass thorn in my side that, after last night, I can no longer ignore. 

Back in July, I wrote a post for my blog called "What Your Workout Attire Says." In it, I am my usual irreverent self, smack-talking some outfit choices but also praising and applauding a few as well. I decided to bestow the piece upon Thought Catalog as a contributor, leaving the fate of its success in their typing fingers. 

Within minutes of the piece posting to the Thought Catalog site, it was a hit. But what I didn't realize until I looked closer was it was a hit for all the wrong reasons. One of the female producers had decided to completely change my original title - okay. That's fair. That's what producers and editors get paid for - to hopefully make decisions that make things better. However, in an effort to make my piece controversial, negative, and more in line with their "we'll sacrifice just about anything creatively for clicks" M.O., Thought Catalog revised my title to:

"8 Things Women Really Need To Stop Wearing At the Gym

No. That's not what I said, guys. That's not what I wrote, what I meant, and in no way embodies the overall sentiment of my piece. Yes, I say hater-ish type things about some outfits I list, but to reiterate, I also praise a handful of workout garb, too. 

Of course, none of this matters because most humans are drawn in by title alone. Thought Catalog knows this, which is why most of their articles come in easy-to-read list forms and probably why they formulate titles with intrigue that often in no way relate to the article to which they are attached, but that will ensure clicks - because, really, that's all that matters, right?

Unfortunately, a lot of the time, Internet readers don't bother to read the actual body of the message but rather become outraged by the title and minor skimming. There's nothing I or anyone else can do about that - it's out of our control and just the nature of the beast when newsfeeds are being inundated with "17 Bizarre Ways To Tell Your Boyfriend You're In Love" a thousand times a week. 

I'm not apologizing for the piece itself - I would never do that. I wrote it, I by no means think it is even close to being one of my best pieces, and sue me - I have opinions about women. I'm not a woman-hater; in fact, I love women and think our judgmental tendencies are hilarious. That's why I play into them and write things I believe the majority of other human women have most likely thought at one point or another but daren't ever say out loud. When people hate my work, 9 times out of 10 it comes down to not sharing the same sense of humor/irony/understanding of over-the-top sarcasm for shock-value. And I'm okay with that.

But to the women via Twitter who call my piece pathetic, and to the hundreds of commenters via the Thought Catalog site who say things like:

You're a dumb ass bitch, get a life and stop judging women in the gym. Obviously you don't realize the problems women already face in the gym with staring and being perceived as weak. Get a life you fat bitch."

I'm sorry you took everything I wrote so personally. And I'll be the first to admit that bashing things like no shirt and scandalous clothing is just my insecurity over in the corner, getting upset and wondering how my stomach will ever go away. But such hateful comments don't exactly make you look like a saint, either. You scold me for having no #respect and #judging and not being a woman's woman, yet you write these 140-character thoughts chockfull of hate and go to town on comment sections, saying some of the ugliest things I've ever read? Come on, now. That don't make much sense.

This entire debacle goes to show that the title really can change everything. Mine was innocent and, in fact, perhaps more intriguing by the vague nature of it. "What Your Workout Attire Says"? Huh? What does she mean? Like, if it could talk to me? Does this include men? Where is this going? I liked my title. My title was good.  But make a title like Thought Catalog's, and watch as pageviews roll in all at the cost of someone's originally innocent piece of content. They should've just named it

"8 Things Stupid Slutty Bitches Really Need To Stop Wearing To Workout by Emma Golden, Someone Who Should Be Hated For This Article Or Maybe Not! OMGDRAMA CLICK HERE TO DECIDE FOR YOURSELF IF SHE'S A HUGE BITCH OR NOT!"

No? Too long? Oh well. Guess l gotta work on brevity.

xox,

emma

 

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