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Food Blogger Rant

Maybe it's the hot weather but I have something to say about food bloggers that I've wanted to get off my chest for a while.

It's not that there are too many of them. There ARE too many of them, but that's to be expected. Give the general population the means to communicate, and they will. Food will of course be a hot topic.

What I hate about them is that they are so verbose about the food they cook. Everything is introduced with paragraphs of verbiage about how this particular dish came about. Julia Child didn't blab so much about the sole meuniere that introduced her to French cooking! She wrote concisely and elegantly.

But these hacks think that people are actually reading the overstuffed verbiage they spill about their hazelnut cake with bacon bits, or their chocolate cake in a cup, or their salmon singed with a blowtorch....

I wish that food bloggers would just write a paragraph, and then print the recipe. And make the paragraph be essential to the recipe.

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  1. I would agree with you that bloggers can tend to be too verbose; this is something I struggle with myself, as I have a tea blog and also another blog.

    I don't have much interest in reading individual recipes though. I rarely (as in once every two years) use a recipe to cook anything and I tend to find recipes uninteresting. So, when I read food blogs, it's the other stuff that I want to read.

    I'm very interested though in the cultural heritage of individual ingredients and dishes, their evolution over time, and people's experiences with cooking them. I like reading in depth about a particular ingredient and how to use it, and I like it when people abstract a recipe to communicate a whole way of cooking or way of approaching something.

    I also like it when people relate food to other topics, like culture, philosophy, ecology, and the like. For example, I like it when someone writes about making something out of an invasive plant but then writes about the history and ecology of that plant in the same post...or when someone writes about baking a certain type of fish in a certain way, and then writes about sustainability issues pertaining to harvesting that fish. THAT's what draws me in, not recipes on their own. And that takes more than a paragraph!

    2 Replies
    1. re: cazort

      I agree that when it's relevant and teaches you something, the words can help. Most of it isn't though.

      I have to say that I'm more of a recipe type myself.

      1. re: cazort

        I'm the exact opposite. I skip over the 'everything else' completely. I'll look at the pictures to get a sense for what it looked like and then i just want to see the recipe (which I'll almost certainly modify, but ...). It really annoys me when said recipe is interwoven with their pithy tales.

      2. Hmmmm . . . seems the hot weather IS getting under your skin. :) Like cazort I too enjoy the stories that go with many of the blogs, particularly for the 3-4 blogs that I follow semi-regularly. But usually it's easy enough to just skip to the recipe if I'm in a hurry or for whatever reason don't want/can't read the whole shebang. Sometime they definitely are long winded! And I'm blown away by the quality of photography on some of these things - "food porn" is a totally appropriate moniker.

        1 Reply
        1. I think Twitter (i.e. micro-blogs) came about because of the verbosity of blogs.

          Maureen Evans is still going strong:

          1 Reply
          1. re: drongo

            Thanks for the link. I laughed out loud at this: "Like any authors, cookbook writers can be blatherers: regional rhapsodists, wheezy memoirists, vegetarian preachers. They try to stuff you with history and anecdote when all you want are ingredients and technique."

            That's what I was trying to say, but I said it with more words. Motes, beams, etc.

          2. I happen to agree with you. I can see how a blogger could get carried away though. I think Elise at Simply Recipes has just the right amount of introduction.

            1 Reply
            1. re: MrsJonesey

              I agree with you! Many blogs are self-indulgent (and that's OK with me), but Simply Recipes has just the right amount of introduction -- whether it's Elise or Hank posting (and I don't know who else posts there). It's one of my favorites.

            2. What bothers me more than the wordiness are the pictures. Now, I love a pretty picture as much as the next person, and it is nice to see what a finished dish looks like. But more and more bloggers seem to have fallen in love with their own photography and completely lost the ability to self-edit. The pictures may be beautiful, but I do NOT need to see five shots in a row of the same bowl of cherries. There are some blogs I have just stopped following because of this.

              One picture of the finished recipe, perhaps two if it is something that looks different when it is cut into, like a cake... that's all I need. I can live with some technique shots if they actually add something to the recipe. But I don't need to see the dish again and again at every conceivable angle, a picture of everyone who tasted it, and the dirty plates left afterwards.

              15 Replies
              1. re: MelMM

                Yes! I don't know which is worse. I adore Pioneer Woman, but she goes overboard with her pictures of every stage of prep. To her credit, at some point, she started adding the print recipe feature at the top, so I just click on that to see the actual recipe.

                1. re: MrsJonesey

                  PW was exactly what I thought of when I read MelMM's post. I want to see a picture of the finished product (which is often what catches my eye in google) and maybe pics of something which would be tough to grasp via words alone.

                  In short, I only go to food blogs for ideas on what to make for dinner, not to read some dope's back patting.

                  1. re: jgg13

                    " . . . some dope's back patting." Wow. Just wow.

                    1. re: jgg13

                      Pioneer Woman was not what I had in mind when I posted that, but then, that is not a blog I have ever followed. I have seen the blog, and she does post a lot of photos, but not as repetitive as what I'm talking about. The blogs I had in mind, which I used to follow but stopped due to photo excess, were Canelle et Vanille and Tartelette. The former seems to have reformed in recent years, and I'm seeing posts with one picture. The latter (Tartelette) has not. Another that has developed this problem more recently and is getting worse is Global Table Adventure. All of these blogs are interesting, and I would read them if they could just self edit a bit on the pictures.

                  2. re: MelMM

                    I'd like to see a blog about cooking without any pictures at all, just to see if it can be done.

                    1. re: FoodPopulist

                      I'd like to see one without words.

                      Picotgrams anyone?

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        Not perfect for ya, but close as I could find in 90 seconds:

                        Ikea recipes

                        Design school student project:

                        And of course, Cooking for Engineers (the tables):

                          1. re: DuchessNukem

                            I do something like the diagrams at Cooking For Engineers when I plan my cooking for Thanksgiving -- to make sure I have enough burners, ovens (at appropriate temperatures) and grills to do everything I want (often 20 or more dishes) with a minimum of keeping-warm or reheating.

                            1. re: DuchessNukem

                              I like Cooking for Engineers, and his diagrams, very much. He has a problem-solving, lack-of-egomania attitude towards cooking. He is an engineer, after all.

                              1. re: DuchessNukem

                                I love this concept of visually illustrated recipes. I would personally start with that, then go to a Cooking for Engineers type chart, THEN to the step by step instrux. Photos help, but only to point out possible pitfalls.

                                Example: when you are creating Swiss meringue buttercream, it can be scary when you get to that curdling stage. A photo of before and after really helped me.

                              2. re: ipsedixit

                                Perhaps we could invent Feynman diagrams especially for recipes.

                            2. re: MelMM

                              Blogs with lots of pictures annoy me. If I want to recreate a recipe, tell me how and don't bother me with all your beauty shots. I'll read it, print the sucker up if I need to, and bring it into the kitchen.

                              1. re: chicgail

                                Indeed - all that is needed is a photo of the finished product.

                                1. re: PhilipS

                                  Obnoxious that you can't print out the recipe itself without ten pages of photos. Rather just skip it.

                            3. That's why professional publications have editors.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: pamf

                                You hit the nail on the head. Whether words or pictures, editing is the key. And it is very hard to self-edit, which is what bloggers are doing. Thus too many words, too many pics.

                              2. Seems I struck a nerve.

                                1. I'll hop on the ranty bandwagon!

                                  I've stopped reading many food blogs because of what I call the "cutesy" factor. Long introduction that makes you think you're the blogger's best friend, everything is sunshine and butterflies, they profess their love for YOU in hopes of you swooning in ecstasy of their greatness in the comment section. And all this is BEFORE they start talking about the recipe, never mind the actual recipe .

                                  I'm so tempted sometimes to post something like, LISTEN CUPCAKE JUST GIVE ME THE @$(&@$^%&* RECIPE AND SHUT UP! But of course I'd ever actually do that.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: xo_kizzy_xo

                                    Just had to comment - I know EXACTLY who you're talking about. Or, you've inadvertently described someone perfectly. Anyway, yes she's extremely cutesy and can swing wildly from vegan, kale-filled salads to decadent desserts. But I remain a reader, she's just so gosh darned nice. And I think her cat is cute.

                                    1. re: sgogo

                                      Ha! I think I've cracked the code, too. And like you, I'm still a fan (though I also give a good-natured eyeroll once in a while).

                                  2. I wholeheartedly agree, something that's been bugging me for a while. The blogger's ego is more important than the food. And I'm happy for your family but we hear about the children and dogs in every post too. It's funny that you mention Julia Child because it makes me think of "Julia and Julia" where the thing that annoyed me about that film was the blogger. She was alright I guess but a bit inane compared to Meryl Streep's performance (and character). The modern Julia is true to form I guess.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: CalicoPaisley

                                      Why should food, a thing, be more important than people, or the life of the blogger?

                                      A lot of blogging starts as a form of self expression, talking about things that one has experienced. In fact that is a frequent recommendation when it comes to writing fiction as well - write about what you know. If may shift to a focus on some particular, such as cooking. Sure there is 'professional' food blogging, say as an adjunct to a cookbook, or other culinary business.

                                      Are we, as readers, being the selfish ones if we insist on the utilitarian aspects of a blog - the recipes that we can use? We are not interested in the blogger as a person, but as a recipe source. If we need recipes, why not pull out a cook book? or search a database on Food Network or Epicurious? For that matter, it is trivial to scroll down past all the verbage to the recipe itself. When I do a web search and find a recipe on a blog, that's what I usually do.

                                        1. re: paulj

                                          I said that I don't like excessive talk. Anything that helps the reader understand (a) the construction of the dish itself and (b) what the dish emotionally means to the cook, is fine with me.

                                          That's why I referred to Julia Child's description of her first sole menieure in France. It meant something to her - and therefore required a bit of explanation.

                                          And it can be anything: a hotdog at a ballpark will do.

                                          My favorite meal was on a hiking trail. I was out of shape, the trail was muddy. I was tired and famished. I reached into my bag and grabbed a watery, rather sour apple and devoured it on the spot. Perhaps if I wrote about that introducing an apple dish, I'd refer to this incident. But I wouldn't go into how the earth's rotation around the sun affected my feelings.

                                        2. re: CalicoPaisley

                                          Blogs are really about the blogger. Good food blogs are usually about the blogger using food as a lens.

                                        3. Unfortunately food bloggers often suffer from two common misconceptions: I can write sentences in my native language, therefore I am A Writer; and I have eaten food my whole life, therefore I am An Expert at it. Their output is not even at the editable level; the training wheels are still new and shiny, and the rider very proud. If a recipe is all the blogger has of value to offer, they are better off posting it to a recipe site and being done with it. As it is bloggers (of all interests) are learning their craft in public, and if they are smart they will understand that it will be years before they write anything worth reading (a lesson that until 10 years ago we learned from the relative secrecy of a pile of rejected manuscripts).

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                            It's interesting, though, how much they parrot each other, especially those I call the "cutesy" ones -- very reminiscent of how PW was before the media storm and FN came knocking. The thinking behind that kind of blogging is wanting every member of your readership to feel like they're your best friend, here's a secret, blah-blah-blah, oh, isn't this precious! And you're all precious for reading me and I love you so much! Oh please, I'm ready to gag. The sad thing is there are a lot of good recipes in between that muck.

                                            It's very much a LOOK AT ME I'M A BLOGGER! contest, especially among the younger set.

                                            Yes, I can scroll through it (I usually do, btw), but more often than not I find myself not visiting those particular sites. Part of me feels I shouldn't have to scroll through the muck to get to the recipe. No wonder why I'm now visiting epicurious and the other databases.

                                          2. I guess I'm being dense because I don't understand the vehemence which some of the posters are displaying here. Seems like it would be easy to either quit reading the offenders or scroll down to the recipe and get on with it. This is much the same way I feel about the contingent who is always bashing Rachel Ray and Sandra Lee. Why not just ignore them? That's what I do and it really isn't hard. There is obviously a market for those shows (and the verbose bloggers), or they would all go away. But they haven't. The comments here - and the lengths to which some are expressing their disgust with bloggers - seems way out of norm for what the subject represents.

                                            1. First of all, I have no patience for "food snobbery" in any form. There are a couple of food bloggers in which I find their tone to be too smug and elitist. I keep away from them. The blogs I like to read are approachable and come off as if they are speaking to me. I like that. In addition, I like the stories of the bloggers I read regularly. I do try some of the recipes but I have to say, I don't pay too much attention to the photos. My favorite food blogger of all time is David Liebowitz. I love his blogs. I love his stories and love the recipes he amasses. That's all:)

                                              14 Replies
                                              1. re: jarona

                                                I love David Liebowitz, too, but I don't think of him as a food blogger. I think of him as a pastry chef and cookbook author who also maintains a blog. To me, a food blogger is someone who, aside from their blog, has no previous food cred. And while I have nothing against a person with no previous food cred, I'd rather come to a forum like Chowhound and read the opinions of many such people than have to crawl every corner of the internet in search of the occasional trustworthy voice. I just don't have time for it. Plus, I prefer the genuine exchange of an internet forum, versus the faux "you link to me and I'll link to you" and "you comment on my posts so I'll comment on your posts" that the blogosphere tries to pass off as an exchange.


                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                  Plus, I prefer the genuine exchange of an internet forum, versus the faux "you link to me and I'll link to you" and "you comment on my posts so I'll comment on your posts" that the blogosphere tries to pass off as an exchange.
                                                  Ouch! The blogroll is an opportunity for food bloggers (any blogger) to exchange and support fellow bloggers. The entire purpose of linking is to be supportive. No different than sharing a pin, a website link, a Tweet, etc. The blogsphere is not a one size fits all forum either, TDQ. There's a place for all of it.

                                                  1. re: HillJ

                                                    yeah, not sure how an exchange that way is so different than an exchange on a website like this.

                                                    1. re: tommy

                                                      I find most comments on blogs to be very superficial. I don't find most chowhound posters to be superficial, though there are most certainly some who are.


                                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                        Ah, that's an interesting point of view. Hasn't been my experience and I wouldn't compare the give & take of CH's with a personal or professional blog written by one person or a few partners with a forum of 2 million food loving members. I enjoy both but they have little in common in that sense.

                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          It's okay to enjoy both and I'm glad you do.

                                                          But, it's just not for me.

                                                          For my time and money, I'd rather seek out a resource that is many voices. Or, a single, knowledgeable voice that has been carefully edited.


                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                            I understand and see your point. For my time...sometimes my money...I'm quickly reminded of colleagues who started out truly at the beginning, unknown, unwanted and made it. My patience for those starting out is an ocean wide. I enjoy watching others succeed and from humble beginnings in the food world I get the greatest pleasure. Blogging is one avenue that can take a talented nobody somewhere. I love blogging for that reason alone.

                                                            1. re: HillJ

                                                              I agree that blogging, and social media in general, is a great democratizer, invaluable for those whose voices can't be heard through traditional media channels. And you're right, for that alone I should be more in support of blogging. I'm feeling appropriately shamed. (Not that you shamed me, but that you reminded me of an important value you and I seem to share in common.)

                                                              But I do find it honestly difficult to find the gems amid all of the noise and that frustrates me.

                                                              That goes for traditional media, too, by the way. I have a relative who likes to give magazine subscriptions as gifts and I often call right away and cancel them (or apply them to a different publication) if they are for a publication I don't enjoy. The big newspaper in town has recently started dropping a free "express" Sunday edition on our doorsteps. I called and stopped that, too. No need to waste ink and paper in these days limited natural resources and global warming.


                                                    2. re: HillJ

                                                      HillJ, I am certain there are many bloggers who geniunely support each other and use the comments and linking as genuine exchanges, but I don't find it to be the norm and it hasn't been my personal experience, with food blogging or other types of blogging. Wordpress on its tips for bloggers actually suggests that you comment on other people's blogs as a way to increase your own traffic. It's promoted by wordpress as an actually marketing strategy.

                                                      Nevertheless, as with any human endeavor, I am sure there are a few exceptional folks who rise to the top and outshine the others.


                                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                        TDQ, I've had tons of blog experience and exposure over 15 plus years already and you can take it or leave it (from me) that your view is backwards in the sense that the norm outshines the exceptions. My last report on food blogs tracked more than 4,000 startups over a year period.

                                                        I'm sad to learn your experience differs but I do question your exposure.

                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          Question away. My exposure is as both a contributor to a couple of very successful blogs, including food blogs, and as a reader.


                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                            TDQ, my question remark was meant in terms of wide exposure to food blogs. I am already aware of your contributions from previous exchanges you have made here on CH. Do you mean successful in terms of advertising revenue, fan base? Readers, we all.

                                                            1. re: HillJ

                                                              Successful in terms of all of that, yes.


                                                          2. re: HillJ

                                                            HillJ - is this report published somewhere? I'd love to read it.

                                                  2. I understand the need to rant about nearly anything these days...afterall, if you spend a good deal of time surfing the Net and land on or follow what's deemed the newest trend or super popular-you're bound to see a lot of opinions about the stuff ...and joining in by comment follows naturally. I get it.

                                                    OTOH, no matter the topic of the blog it begins as a personal journal online. Most bloggers aren't writing for an audience they don't know; they write for themselves and folks they do know. It's amazing how often online writers forget the scope of the potential audience. Or how often readers believe what's written.. is for them.

                                                    However, today blogging (I read my 1st food blog in 1998) has grown into a area of business that is "fairly" new and gaining speed daily. Blogs for income, blogs to enhance profession, blogs that provide a new avenue to access a person, place or thing has exploded already along with all the social media that came (quickly) after....

                                                    Like following an author, artist, etc. people follow along in greater #'s today. It's just easy to do, fun to do and POPULAR to do. More people want to participate. Not all food blogs are created equal and never will be. So rant away, but don't throw too big a blanket on a medium that has become an acceptable way to share ideas, talents and trends.

                                                    The choices are so grand in food blogging I don't need to waste a minute on those that don't hold my interest.......hey what's that........a new blog just popped up over @ X YZ...

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                      Fairly said, and yes, when evaluating what a blog is worth to us a distinction should be made between personal and professional ambition (journals and journalism). There's really nothing to say against someone who's just enjoying food and writing and having fun.

                                                    2. I find the verbosity and lack of writing skill or ability to be interesting just as annoying on every food discussion website, blog or not. I bet most of the qualities that people are complaining about are right under their noses here, for example.

                                                      6 Replies
                                                      1. re: tommy

                                                        I was thinking the same thing but couldn't figure out a way of saying it without sounding even worse that I already did!

                                                        1. re: Toots4120

                                                          "When you get beyond irony, you have to be REAL careful." - Jeff Danziger, political cartoonist

                                                        2. re: tommy

                                                          But the difference is, a food forum such as Chowhound faciliates the exchange of ideas, a give and take. Your skill in communicating your idea is essential on a food forum, of course, and good grammar and selective editing is certainly useful. But, some of the most worthwhile tips I've gotten on Chowhound have been in a post of a mere sentence or two. Maybe not even a full sentence.

                                                          A blog, on the other hand, is a broadcasting of a single voice. I think grammar and editing becomes a lot more important in that scenario.

                                                          Also, I don't know about you, but on Chowhound, I'm writing in between meetings or in the spare couple of minutes I have while waiting for a job to come out of the printer. And my flawed posts here on Chowhound reflect that. I hope bloggers are putting more effort than that into their work...


                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                            boring is boring, uninteresting is uninteresting, no matter how you slice it, and regardless of the platform on which it's presented.

                                                            1. re: tommy

                                                              Absolutely true! But, if you're going to be boring, you also probably ought to be brief.


                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                Being brief generally doesn't give one enough chance to be boring. Just pointless.


                                                        3. Julia Child was working under the constraints imposed by editors and producers for print and television. And before the widespread availability of a hundred cable channels, only the best could get on television. Anybody can produce a blog and self-publish without limit at low cost, so of course much of what is published in that way will be worthless.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. The grandiose grandstanding bloviating food blogger..

                                                            1. Guilty.

                                                              I don't do recipes on mine but restaurant reviews. I try to incorporate some history either pertinent to the food, restaurant or area. I can, at times, get really long winded. After I'm finished with it I'll think, I'd never read that. It's too long.



                                                              1. That's exactly what I look for in a food blog. A good recipe with a short, interesting narrative and relatively few photos. There are bloggers who don't appreciate the concept of "less is more. " Not only are they verbose, some use the medium for a stand-up routine. Grant, those are predominantly from talentless hacks who possess little if any culinary abilities. I've seen some food blogs that have obscene amounts of photos, with pics detailing mundane steps such as pouring salt and chopping onions. Others include photos of their kids and pets. Serious food bloggers make judicious use of the family photos. When I run across one that doesn't, I quickly exit out of it. If I want to look at dozens of photos, I'll pick up a pretty picture book in the children's section of my local Barnes & Noble. When it comes to food blogs, I prefer content over style.

                                                                1. I dislike food bloggers so much I have started a spoof blog website. I am based in the UK and it seems that food bloggers are taking over the internet.

                                                                  Many seem to be vengeance blogs too. One high profile food blogging couple have managed to rack up 22,000 tweets in addition to their blog - which coincidently doesn't allow any negative comments although they freely criticise the establishments they visit.

                                                                  16 Replies
                                                                  1. re: PhilipS

                                                                    I find the shameless self promotion of blogs a bit humorous.

                                                                    1. re: PhilipS

                                                                      I dislike food bloggers so much I have started a spoof blog website.
                                                                      PhilipS, if you're doing so for fun, $ or sport or any combination, it's hard not to smirk at your comment and think "where would PhilipS be without food bloggers."

                                                                      1. re: PhilipS

                                                                        "food bloggers are taking over the internet"

                                                                        So your solution is to start another one??


                                                                        1. re: Davwud

                                                                          Indeed - but only to expose the bloated obsession with the fine dining industry that is happening in London especially.

                                                                          HillJ - my blog is for fun only and I am not concerned for one moment as to "where I am" - unlike many "celebrity" bloggers that exist.

                                                                          1. re: PhilipS

                                                                            What are your thoughts on the pioneer woman.

                                                                            1. re: tommy

                                                                              Never heard of her/it - but a quick google and a glance at the site - it seems OK - but probably not one I would spend a great deal of time on. I can see that it would attract a certain section of the population, but I am not one to open up my private life to the world and find it hard to understand people who do.

                                                                              Why do you ask?

                                                                              I do have a problem with people who feel the need to openly criticise the efforts of other on the internet. If I have a good experience, then I will give a good review on Trip Advisor or write a letter of praise to the management. If it is bad, then I tell my friends, but wouldn't rant on the web about it.

                                                                              1. re: PhilipS

                                                                                "I do have a problem with people who feel the need to openly criticise the efforts of other on the internet."

                                                                                Hello Pot. I'm Kettle. How are you today??


                                                                                1. re: Davwud

                                                                                  I'm fine poppet.

                                                                                  Although some people get a bit touchy when the tables are turned ;)

                                                                                  Additionally many food bloggers are doing it as a hobby. Restaurant owners are trying to make a living.

                                                                                  1. re: PhilipS

                                                                                    It's a free Net-world PhilipS. Obviously you can do as you please. Perspective is what most blogs are about. On any topic. I support the blogsphere personally as a fan of several dozen and professionally (for those making some real money running professional blogs). Since 1999.

                                                                                    I'll share this much with you. If you have something to say and attract readers who comment on your perspective, you may be on to something for fun, sport or profit....but then you'll be joining the rank and file-not finding fault.

                                                                                    1. re: PhilipS

                                                                                      I agree with you that far too many people feel like their the next Anton Ego. There are also far, far too many people who think that if it's not awesome it's crap. Like a good solid _______ is just junk.

                                                                                      I don't do negative reviews. I'll point out what I percieve as short comings or talk about things that I don't like. But if a place isn't "Blog worthy" it doesn't get a mention.


                                                                                      1. re: Davwud

                                                                                        Huh? What does a restaurant review on a personal blog have in common with a blogged themed to spoof on food blogs?

                                                                                  2. re: PhilipS

                                                                                    Forget to say, good luck PhilipS.

                                                                                  3. re: tommy

                                                                                    Couldn't resist there, tommy? LOL...too funny.

                                                                              2. re: PhilipS

                                                                                What do you do to see so much food blogging? The food blogs that I see are ones that come in a recipe search, or that I subscribe to (rss). No one is forcing me to follow thousands of food blogs.

                                                                                Are you somehow professionally involved with food or food media? Your post on the food photography thread sounds a bit like that.

                                                                                1. re: paulj

                                                                                  No - I am not professionally involved with the food industry. I have however, see how blogging can have a negative effect on an establishment.

                                                                                  My cousin runs a hotel. He had a bad review because he charged a guest for damage done to a room - the damage was bad enough for the police to be called. This person then made it his personal vendetta to write as many bad reviews on the net - all anonymous of course. Thankfully my cousin managed to keep on top and either counteract the review or get the website to remove it.

                                                                                  But it took a lot of his time using search engines and sending off reports and emails. As a business owner, he shouldn't have to do that.

                                                                                  1. re: PhilipS

                                                                                    So it sounds like you have a problem with the Internet, then. Not necessarily just food bloggers. A huge group of diverse people who are all the same to your mind.

                                                                              3. This seems a bit like: hipsters hate hipsters...

                                                                                I think food blogs are great, because you don't have to follow them. There is a wide variety. You don't like the style of one blogger - read another blog - you don't like any blog - so don't read any!

                                                                                For the recipes, I can't really follow you - there are so many recipe databases in the web, which just feature a simple recipe or a very short introduction... you might have missed them out?

                                                                                I think it is definitely a topic of live and let live...

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: opinionated.alchemist

                                                                                  I think for me there is a distinct line between "sharing" and "bragging".

                                                                                  Nothing wrong with someone sharing a good recipe, but we have a lot of food bloggers in the UK who are into fine dining and have blogs detailing their eating experiences. Very often they are not complimentary to the chefs either. There was recently a bit of a spat between one blogger (James Isherwood) and a top Chef which hit all the national papers.

                                                                                2. I couldn't agree more. That's why I prefer to watch short food video blogs. The makers of the videos know they have a very limited amount of time to make their point. No 'Bergman' shots. LOL
                                                                                  This is what I'm talking about: NFB food
                                                                                  and 'The Perennial Palate'
                                                                                  IMO food writers like Waverley Root (The Food of France) was the 'Escoffier' of food writing perfection. Anyone who thinks they have opinions about food 'others need to know about for their own good' first should check out the above sites. Then try to be as parsimonious on their keyboards.

                                                                                  1. I think the folks on this discussion need to read another - much more reasonable/less ruthless - approach to this topic that is going on another post here at Chowhound: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/864896

                                                                                    It's interesting because that OP had a snarky approach much like much of this one but the subsequent comments have been, for me, less self centered and more accepting. As I said way early in this discussion, here's a lot out there in the way of food blogs - if you don't like what you see immediately, just go to something else. No need to be so harsh and uppity about "what is right." There is no right way to do this.

                                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: Toots4120

                                                                                      Toots, many of us have said the same. Not everyone dislikes food bloggers or adds to the snark. But we can accept that communities like CH are designed to offer a place where food folks can duke out their opinons freely. A passionate anti food blog comment doesn't change my opinion anymore than I can convert a rant. Do you really think a successful food blogger is losing sleep over this? Any hard working writer knows what comes with the territory and criticism can fuel inspiration.

                                                                                      1. re: HillJ

                                                                                        Travel anywhere in the world and you'll get VERY passionate opinions about food. We all have to eat. Food isn't about filling our stomachs in many parts of the world. Yes that's true about the millions of people who must send all day trying not to starve to death. For us blessed people who do not have to worry about starving we have invested 'food' with a very complicated aspect.
                                                                                        IMO CH is, on a scale of one to a hundred, a twenty when it comes to allowing members to 'scream' at each other. The mods keep it that way for better or worse.
                                                                                        For me most food bloggers are pretty much irrelevant. Why do I need to waste my band width reading what the 'twenty something' guy three miles away sitting in his 'PJ's" in his parents basement thinks about his latest 'dining' experience at 'Dick's Halfway Inn'.
                                                                                        There are only so many 'A.A. Gill's out there.

                                                                                        1. re: Puffin3

                                                                                          Screaming? Hardly. Passionate is a word I use liberally myself. But screaming, nah.

                                                                                          You lost me when state you believe that most food bloggers are irrelevant and hanging out in some basement, wow! That's a mouthful considering the global scale of food blogging. You really believe that?

                                                                                          But like I said upthread, we can accept that communities like CH are designed to offer a place where food folks can duke out their opinons freely, including opposing opinions about food blogging.

                                                                                          1. re: HillJ

                                                                                            "But like I said upthread, we can accept that communities like CH are designed to offer a place where food folks can duke out their opinons freely, including opposing opinions about food blogging.".

                                                                                            Exactly. If any of us "duked it out" so to speak, on any of those blogs, we'd create a firestorm. And I wouldn't even consider this discussion to be "duking it out" -- it's a discussion fueled by passionate food lovers :)

                                                                                              1. re: HillJ

                                                                                                It's like some people who drive cars fancy themselves as 'experts' at 'all things car'. Remember when we didn't have digital cameras and most people who were into photography had to put some thought into using up a film cartridge? Now I can take a thousand photos a day if I want. That doesn't make me an 'expert' in the field of photography. Now with the internet anyone who goes to a restaurant can offer up their 'expert' opinion to tens of thousands of readers. A.A. Gill? Not so much.http://www.vanityfair.com/archive/france

                                                                                                1. re: Puffin3

                                                                                                  I think it's perfectly fine for people to share their opinions, whether they be "experts" or laypeople, as long as they don't misrepresent themselves. Afterall, Chowhound is a community full of laypeople (and some experts, too) so it seems to me that those of us who post here have already decided they are open to reading the opinions of laypeople. Whether it's a blog or chowhound, it's up to the reader to decide if they want to read opinions from laypeople.


                                                                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                    Excellent points TDQ.

                                                                                                    And Puffin, while I wouldn't disagree with the analogy to the extent that "things have changed" thanks to the Net and technology in nearly every sector of our busy lives, I don't agree that food bloggers are labeling themselves experts. Having an opinion is what writers do. Pros and layman. Readers typically assign labels like good/bad/expert/etc. Taking responsibility for how we as readers take in information is on us.

                                                                                                    Expert labeling is a waste of time. Having that expectation is up to you.

                                                                                    2. You can't expect this with the volume of bloggers out there though. Yeah it's annoying (trust me, I can't stand overly verbose writing) but it just means you have to spend more time sifting through the stuff you don't like to find and bookmark the gems that appeal to you.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: thecitylane

                                                                                        Very solid point coupled with the sheer volume of choices! I'm a huge fan of the genre.