Friday, March 6, 2009

My Side of the Sassy Mama Story

Wow its been a crazy 24 hours and I have had some time to soak it all in and things have gotten way out of hand and I feel I need to tell my side of the story, so here goes. I have so much going through my mind right now so I apologize if I begin to ramble or jump around during this post.

About 2 weeks ago I was at a #gno twitter party and we were talking about PR and sponsorships and how to develop relationships. As a new blogger this is a topic of much interest to me so during the end of the party when someone named @sassymamas came into the party saying if you were interested in Blogher sponsorships to dm her, so did. I was told to join the www.sassy-mamas.com community and send her an email about what I wanted and my blog stats, so I did. A few days later on the site I was given the title of "Sassy 16" and was asked to begin promoting the site, get members, and start groups on the site, so I did. A few days later I was given a "sponsorship" to blogher by sassymamas. I would like to clarify that this "sponsorship" was $100, a very small amount of money in relation to the overall cost of the trip. I am not greedy, I am happy for any amount of help, but the way @sassymamas is presenting this fact on twitter, she is making it sound as if she has given 5 full sponsorships and she has not. The more I thought about it I felt it was unfair the amount of work that I was being asked to do for her site in return for a small amount of money.

Anyway, I invited my friends, started my groups and was actively promoting Sassy-Mamas, then some of my friends and some others who are much more educated in social media than myself started to ask questions about the site, questions I didn't have the answers too so asked Sassymamas myself. I told her people had questions and I myself had questions and before I could continue to promote her site I would like my questions answered. I asked who she was? She knew who we all were we knew nothing about her. I asked her where the funding for her sponsorships and site were coming from. I also asked her what her goal for the site was. The answers I received were, if I didn't know what the site was about I shouldn't be there and for personal reasons she was keeping her identity a secret. Think of it like this, If your tween came to you and said they just accepted money from someone whom they know nothing about and was "working" for them wouldn't you freak out? So I decided to follow my inner mom voice and try to find out more about sassymama since she was not sharing.

I found that the site and the email address where recently created and came out of nowhere very quickly, I found that the address I was given was at a shopping center and I found that the email address that sent me my "sponsorship" was a completely different person all together. So I decided to approach Sassymama again with the information I found, I asked her to come clean and explain what was going on. I woke up this morning with an email from Sassymama telling me it was sad that I had nothing better to do than investigate her and I was no longer welcome at Sassymamas and please return my "sponsorship" I was also banned from the site. I go back again to the point, if you are going to do business with someone don't you have the right to ask questions such as these. Okay so you have an office in a mall to protect your privacy, then say that, to get defensive and not answer reasonable questions. If you are just a mom trying to help other moms, why not just say that. Isn't social media about transparency and building relationships? How can you build a relationship with someone you know nothing about?

Before I was asked to leave I had decided I was going to lay low at Sassymamas until I felt comfortable, I contacted a few of my friends who had joined to let them know how I was feeling, what I knew, and what responses I was getting and asked them to make up their own mind about the whole thing and just to proceed with caution. I was in no way trying to ruin anyone's reputation or character, I was only looking out for myself and my friends. I did not send out a broadcast email to all members of the site, I only spoke with a few women whom I trust and consider friends.

I see as I am writing this that there are posts saying the "real Sassymama is revealed" I cannot comment on this information because you must be a member to read it and I am not allowed on the site.

I apologize if this has hurt anyone, that was not my intention, I was just asking questions I felt I had a right to ask. When I didn't get answers I stepped back, that's it. I felt I was looking out for myself and my friends. If I was wrong then I was missing out on a great opportunity and that was my problem no one else's. I did not tweet any malicious tweets, I did not publicly tweet that people should not join Sassymamas, I did not tweet anything negative about Sassymamas or start any other sites about the issue.

I would like to put this behind me and move forward and do not plan on talking about it publicly anywhere else. I wish everyone involved with Sassymamas the best of luck in the future.

I am not sorry that I decided to follow my instincts and look out for myself and my friends.

Feel free to leave your comments.








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10 comments:

PlusSizeMommy said...

Very good Kim, and respectable !!! I feel you did the right thing, and I agree with you 10000% !! I pulled out too but on my own free will and I am not into drama and I am glad I made my own choice as well. (((HUGGS))) just keep on keeping on..

Love ya !!

Beth AKA PlusSizeMommy

Sandy Jenney said...

You did what was right, as I did. When you are getting the run around from someone when you ask them honestly to answer questions and they get nasty with you...then you know something isn't right. You have nothing to apologize for. Why didn't the SM tell us who she was when we were asking if all was fine. You have nothing to feel bad about.

....the Sassy Mom!! said...

Thanks for thinking of friends and following your instincts! I don't know what is really going on there but I wish everyone the best!

Jerri Ann said...

I just don't know. I stuck with it today through lunch or so and then the links started coming through proving that it was simply not something that was on the up and up. I'm with you, I'd rather not continue to discuss it, it's too much of a "drama-mama" thing and I'd just rather now cope with that. I have enough on my plate - as we obvious by my tweets from last night...argh!

Nicely written and I commend you for being tactful and honest at the same time, it's not always easy to do that.

Rachel Ferrucci said...

Kim,

Nice post. Honest and to the point without bashing anyone...you are a Classy Chick!

Stacie in Atlanta said...

I think that you are very upfront and did the right thing. YOU do not have anything to apologize for at all. :)

Becky said...

I found you through Plus Size Mommy and I just wanted to let you know that I am impressed. Some people would have taken the $100 and done whatever she was asking. You had questions and doubts. You made a decision and you stuck with it. I admire that. It seems more and more people take the easy way out but it takes a person who is true to themselves to take a stand. You also did it with honesty and integrity.

Painter Mommy said...

So sorry to hear that this has happened. I didn't realize what was going on. I appreciate your honesty as well. I am not sure what to think about all of this because I am involved at that site. I am a bit confused on how to proceed, especially because I know you more than I know this other person. Hmmmmm.....

 
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