Behind This Door is a Blogger Who Is Feeling an Epic MARVEL Sized Burn

UPDATE: Which I feel is necessary due to a high amount of responses to this post on social media. I want to make it very clear that I am not PROTESTING MARVEL or Sony. I think they made a mistake. People make mistakes all the time I don’t go protesting them. Other professionals make mistake in their line of work, I don’t protest them either. I will continue to promote their films and merchandise because before a blogger I am a FAN! That is at my core. Also, this is not a cry to be recognized as a journalist or a reporter. Bloggers are very different than both. However, we do reach the same end which is to create publicity and publicize and we should be respected for it. This is an article to build awareness around what we do as bloggers and why people need to stop treating us like we’re a joke. 

 

Behind this door is a personal post. I don’t get to write these much lately, however, recently a particular film struck me right and wrong for many reasons. I’m talking about Spider-Man: Homecoming. Albeit a really good Sony/MARVEL film, there was a particular line which struck me like an arrow straight to the heart. No spoilers here.

 

Before I tell you the quote, I want to tell you another quote. A statement from a strange older guy who was one of my regulars when I was waiting tables (a position I took so I could quit my career in the operating room where I was a surgical technologist, and pursue my blogging ventures).

 

Why don’t you quit blogging and get a real job? You have two degrees, why not use them for something that will make reliable income?”

 

What that man didn’t know is that I was using one of my degrees to further my blog brand in the travel industry. This brings me to today and Spider-Man: Homecoming.

 

At the end of the film, a line is said,

 

Behind this door lies a room full of reporters, real ones, not bloggers.” – Tony Stark

 

Whoa, wait, I’m a blogger!

 

Behind this door

The Disney/Marvel blogger team with Benedict Cumberbatch after we interviewed him for Doctor Strange

 

That was a big fat hairy slap in the face that came at me right at about thirty minutes before the ending of Spider-Man: Homecoming. A personal attack on bloggers which did nothing for the plot. An attack approved by MARVEL Studios President Kevin Feige and about to be seen my millions. As in, in just a few days, bloggers around the country are going to be dissed in MARVEL sized capacity. Now I’d like to say for the record that I am aware that Sony owns this film however, MARVEL put their name on it and approved it. Did we do something wrong?

 

This dig is made after countless unpaid hours have been spent (by myself and many of my own friends and colleagues) on MARVEL junkets with Disney, tweeting from premieres until our thumbs fly off, wading our way through 30+ pages of transcripts from interviews (interviews which include Kevin Feige himself). A job we do because we love MARVEL and we are fans as well as bloggers. A job that many think is a walk in the park, but is actually quite vigorous and demanding as we leave our families for days, suffer jet lag, and manage collectively over 30 MILLION impressions for premieres and talent interviews. A job which we love. 

 

Is flying across the country to interview a MARVEL director not work? Albeit cool work. But it’s still work, and it deserves respect.

 

It is a place where work and passion collide but it is work and we deserve respect for it. Especially when that bleeds into our desk demands for upwards of 3 weeks as we deliver DAILY timed interview releases. Especially when reporters are paid by their publication to be there and often given thousands of dollars for a story, while we have to manage our full-time income on our own through ad placement and sponsorships (despite not even being present at our desks so we can be a part of the content we’re creating). #Whatthefeige

 

It was a colossal sized slap made directly at bloggers. My best friend Shelley VanWitzenburg of A Magical Mess, MARVEL blogger and awesome writer was so upset by it that she shared it with her followers. You can read her Dolby Cinema Spider-Man: Homecoming review and rant here.

 

behind this door

We screen films, without our families, so we can bring our fans breaking reviews. Then we go out and watch them again. Because we love what we do, we support MARVEL and their box office openings and we spend our money to do it.

 

 

Behind This Door

 

If you are a blogger or influencer, I urge you to share on your socials, in your posts and other channels your own story about how hard you work using #Behindthisdoor. You don’t have to mention the film. The hashtag will do its work.

 

#Behindthisdoor

 

#Behindthisdoor lies a single mom who has to leave her son to bring you a story.

 

#Behindthisdoor is a girl who does all the jobs a big media publication does from a little desk in her home but still reaches millions. Who tirelessly stays connected, engaged and in the loop (even when my mind and body are begging me to disconnect).

 

#Behindthisdoor is a blogger who reaches ten times more people in a weekend than the New York Times in a week on her Twitter channel but gets paid nothing by MARVEL while the Times charges 35k dollars. And I do it gladly because I love MARVEL, Disney, and Lucasfilm.

 

#Behindthisdoor I am one of the many bloggers who work directly with Disney/MARVEL to promote and produce content in line with their film releases. Content I am flown out to Los Angeles by Disney to produce. My last trip was for Doctor Strange.

 

#Behindthisdoor is one of the bloggers who in just five hours reached nearly 3 million people with this hashtag today, and that’s just the beginning. If that’s not real I don’t know what is.

 

behind this door

 

The Profesh World of Blogging

 

I hope this message can create awareness about how bloggers work and create a living. First let’s acknowledge the fact that like film talent and musical talent, we also created something from nothing. No one handed us our brands on a silver platter. For most of us (myself included), we had no idea what we were doing. We spent (and still spend) countless hours researching digital media strategy, brand strategy, SEO, and social media guidelines. And just when we think we have it figured out, algorithms change, Google changes and we have to start it over again.

 

We weren’t given a textbook in college. Yet, many of us hold degrees in journalism, marketing, public relations and communications. We were all told we were crazy, to get a real job, yet many of us have managed to make more of an income in four years than a college graduate four years post grad.

 

We have been the underdogs, scraping our way to recognition among “real press”. It’s been a bumpy road, but statistics will show we are the future of media

 

We attend massive conferences where we meet with national and global brands. We are sponsored by thousands of national brands and even entire countries. We pay overhead. We have registered companies. We pay federal and state taxes. We hire people and create jobs.

 

behind this door

We attend lecture upon lecture, year after year on how to be better at our work.

 

On top of all those things, for every blogger you see, read about, follow or meet, you should know that we are likely doing it all on our own. We manage our own publicity, administrative work, financial aspects, networking, content creation and social outreach. Whereas big media has entire departments for these things. It is a highly competitive and demanding field to be in but I wouldn’t change it for one moment.

 

Behind this door, christa thompson

The Reality of Blogging

 

In reality, yes we do some pretty amazing things. Behind the scenes things, HQ things. All promotional things.

 

In reality, we can’t just go to a personal dinner (the fact that personal and dinner are even in the same sentence is a reality in of itself). We take photos and Tweet and share on Facebook. My family won’t touch their food until I’ve given them permission. We never want to miss an opportunity for good content.

 

In reality, I spent my fourth of July with my family worrying if my Kia placement would be charming enough. Did I look good for the camera? Did my son’s clothes look okay?

 

In reality, I’ve gained 40lbs in the last three years from being sedentary for 10+ hours a day, weeks on end, and then going on press junkets and eating out every day (because we get fed, a lot).

 

In reality, I haven’t been “caught up” since 2013. I’ve sacrificed holidays from my child, family gatherings, being present in just about every situation, my fitness, and personal relationships all so I can grind.

 

In reality, I’ve had to break up with guys who get jealous of my travels, possessive and even intimidated.

 

You don’t know pressure until twenty different national brands are staring at you as you approach a deadline. 

 

I love what I do. I love that I can be home with my son when he needs me. I love that I have seen and done things I never dreamed would be possible, much to the thanks of Disney. I love the people I have met and the control I have over my own creative mediums. I love my work, but it is work, and it should be respected as such.

 

#whatthefeige


About Christa Thompson

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Christa Thompson is the Founder and Senior Editor of The Fairytale Traveler. Christa has been traveling the world since 2003 when she attended a summer abroad study at the University of Cambridge in England. Since then, her wanderlust has been fierce. Her three passions in life are her son, traveling, and being creative. The Fairytale Traveler brand gives Christa the opportunity to do all of these things and to live intentionally every day. "It's never too late to believe in what you love and to pursue your dreams." -Christa Thompson

23 Comments on this post

  1. As someone that has been told to get a real job, and then went back to school to study journalism and then be told that it is a dying profession and a dumb decision, I have so many feels about this. Bloggers work twice as hard as journalists sometimes because we are the photographer, coder, marketer, and monetizer all in one. The “obvious joke” that people want to claim is the same as “normalizing” in other conversations. Why do we need to put anyone down!?

    #BehindThisDoor is a mother of two that left the workforce to follow her dreams of writing, no matter what the topic.

    Meghan Cooper / Reply
  2. Thank you for being the voice of us who are less influential still. You’re amazing.

    Wendy Byde / Reply
  3. So proud of you and your authenticity. Love how your being true to yourself and taking a stand for that truth and your passions without fear or intimidation of possible backlash or repercussions. What was just said #behindthisdoor was well said and well written.

    Dovess777 / Reply
  4. I hope this means you will no longer attend any Marvel press trips in protest.

    AJ / Reply
    • I see what you’re doing here. Let me be clear when I say, THIS IS NOT A PROTEST. None of the bloggers backing this hashtag are protesting MARVEL or Sony. We are simply creating awareness around our profession. I work with Marvel, I will continue to work with Marvel. If it continues to be the butt of their jokes then I will reconsider that and it will make me sad because I am a fan, before anything else, I have been a fan of the MARVEL Universe and MCU for as long as I can remember fangirling about anything. I hope they don’t make this mistake twice….

  5. Blogging is just a different type of platform of expression. With all the “fake news” labels being thrown around, you would think that all types of writers would come together instead of beating each other down.

    parentingpatch / Reply
  6. I would love to write for or about Marvel! I am a huge comic book nerd! I really enjoyed reading your blog and yes I read the whole thing! It really hit home for me as well. I am just starting out on this journey and hope to eventually leverage it to help a lot of people. Thank you for sharing the struggle. It was real, authentic, and refreshing. I appreciate it.

    Jim / Reply
  7. […] as an attack on another blogger, so I apologize in advance if I offend her. I actually really like her site. I simply and strongly disagree with her opinion on this topic. Think how boring the world would be […]

  8. I’m glad you spoke out on this! Bloggers work very hard and it was rather brash (just like Tony Stark) to say that.

    Cindy Gordon / Reply
  9. […] to make a living. #BehindThisDoor is someone fighting to be taken seriously. #BehindThisDoor is an educated woman running a business. […]

  10. Amen and Amen. Love you and thank you for speaking your mind. Thank you for being who you are. Thank you for being an example that I look up to as just a small blogger. What we do is real work and I put my heart and soul into it.

  11. I personally think you are overreacting to a comment by a character Tony Stark in a marvel movie. I do not get these attack on a blogger comments at all. Bloggers work hard yes they do, but a Blogger and a reporter are NOT the same at all. PR vs Journalism in my opinion.

  12. Well done for speaking out about this! I don’t think bloggers are given enough credit for what they do. Many of them are a LOT more influential than mainstream celebrities, yet the majority of people don’t seem to get that at all!

    Louise x

  13. Bloggers work so hard at what they do, so this must has been a huge slap in the face.

    Danielle / Reply
  14. Sounds like you hate your job.

    Lynsey / Reply
    • Actually, I wrote in my article several times that I love my job. So I don’t quite know where you’re getting that from. I just want respect for it (as do many other bloggers) in the media community. But that you for coming to my site and reading my article!

  15. […] I hadn’t seen Christa’s post – oh but once I did – It wasn’t just me! Other bloggers were reacting to the […]

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