A short while ago, I joined the online community of British Mummy Bloggers. In part it was an attempt at self validation - I'm not just a sad housewife who spends too much time at her computer, I'm a British Mummy Blogger!
As I have navigated my way around the site, I have come across many inspiring, funny, heartwarming and informative blog posts from women, who like myself, have parenting as an overwhelmingly high priority in their lives.
I have also found (and enjoyed entering) many Blog Giveaways offering an amazing variety of different prizes. This is my baby boy modelling a Winnie the Pooh Sleepsuit I was lucky enough to win from one of the blogs I discovered, Chez Maximka.
Some of the prizes that are offered in Giveaways are bought with the blogger's own money but more often they are items that have been received from Companies or PR representatives that want to promote a brand or product. I have been surprised by the amount of interest there is from companies looking to sponsor the more popular blogs and offer free products in exchange for reviews.
I do wonder how easy it is to give a completely honest opinion of a product when by virtue of having been given it for free, one might feel a sense of loyalty or of being indebted. I have rarely read an unfavourable review (apart from one for Ben 10 Shaker Maker which basically said it was rubbish!) but they nearly always offer an interesting perspective which makes them eminently readable.
With so much on offer from the commercial sector, there might be a temptation to try and cash in but I honestly believe that financial gain is not the primary motivator of the mummy bloggers. Were it to become so I think that the group would very quickly lose it's heart - and heart is evident in much abundance.
I am proud to be a mummy blogger, and if I were to profit from the odd giveaway from time to time, I certainly wouldn't feel that I had sold out!