The New York Times Has NO Fashion Sense

Apparently I can push political agendas, but I’ll always be seen as an Oprah-watching, bon-bon eating, Katie Couric-esq, shoe-shopping, GIRL.

Even the New York Times will write about how powerful I am, and how I’m not getting my props-yet they will publish the article in the ‘Fashion and Style‘ section.

Sure they will write about about heart attacks and blogging and place it in “Technology.” But WOMEN bloggers? Oh, they belong next to “It’s Botox for You, Dear Bridesmaids” and “The BreakUps That Got Under My Skin.

Perhaps, with all the talk of us being “…a corporate-sponsored Oprah-inflected version of a ’60s consciousness-raising group” they missed the part about 36 million of us taking over as power-users of the web while raising our children and supporting our families.

Perhaps, I need to remind or at the very least provide some additional information that may or may not affect the future placement of a piece on women bloggers.

Women are outnumbering men on the web.

Women control .83cents of every household dollar spent. That means from buying a lawnmower to buying laundry detergent, women hold the purse strings.

Women have been turning off DayTime television and canceling their subscriptions to ‘female’ based magazines in favor of going online.

Yet when we get together yearly to learn from one another on the business and practices of blogging, the NYT sees fit to discuss us in the same breath as “what women are wearing on their feet this summer.”

Maybe they missed the part where we discussed open source with 2008 Google-O’Reilly Open Source Award Winner Angela Byron? Or where we met to create a position paper to be submitted to the Democratic National Committee for inclusion in the party platform? Or what about the BlogHer/NBC Universal deal worth 5 million?

I am thrilled the New York Times sees fit to cover a women’s blogging conference. I look at it as a step in the right direction.

But you surely don’t see stories about men bloggers in the Sports section or an article on the latest strategic partnership laced with phrases like “And though women and men are creating blogs in roughly equal numbers, many women at the conference were becoming very Katie Couric about their belief that they are not taken as seriously as their male counterparts…”

Is Michael Arrington of TechCrunch very Rupert Murdoch? Is Jason Calacanis of Mahalo very Matt Lauer?

Are the men in tech and blogging consistently being compared to their male, traditional media counterparts?

Not so much.

For every article on women and tech and blogging, you will see the words “Oprah” and “Couric” and “Fashion.”

New York Times…thanks for coming out to BlogHer ’08. Thanks for taking some photos. Thanks for raising awareness.

Next time I’m hoping you’re over our lactation station and daycare and “nurturing messages,” because if that is all you see…you’re missing out on a tour de force, online and off.

Crossposted at the Huffington Post
Erin Kotecki Vest is the Political Director at and writes a !gasp! MommyBlog at Queen of Spain blog.



Spoiled, Not Stupid

BlogHer ’08 squees have faded and hundreds of powerful women bloggers are now back home with their families.

Companies are furiously entering new email addresses into their databases and I am going through the three totebags filled with everything from gift cards for photo prints to thumb drives to toys for my children.

I’m used to it.

I’m not impressed.

I’m spoiled by the big stuff. The video game sytems and the hottest electronics. The humidfiers and the loaner hybrid SUV’s.

I’m spoiled.

But while I revel in my swag, I fully realize these ‘gifts’ are bribes.

I’m not stupid.

The assumption that I am, pisses me off.

Just like any business, some people will act professionally and some will not.

Just like any friendship, some people will latch on to a person to use them and some will not.

I’m not stupid.

There is an assumption floating around the internet that we silly mommybloggers have no idea how to handle all this ‘fame’ and ‘fortune.’

We are taking free stuff and not being transparent when we write about it. We’re taking free stuff and thumbing our noses at any offering that isn’t the best and most expensive.

I’m not stupid.

I’m wondering if the tech bloggers were all called spoiled when they started getting the new notebooks via UPS. I’m wondering if the fashion writers were called spoiled when new designers sent over their spring lines. I’m wondering if any publishing site, anywhere, at anytime, for any reason was called ‘spoiled’ when they were sent the ‘newest’ or the ‘latest’ or the ‘most recent innovation.’

I’m not stupid.

It might make some of these larger names or sites or companies uncomfortable that this Mom of two in her PJ’s, drinking her morning coffee, conducts the business of blogging from her laptop while the rest of the industry toils.

I’m not stupid.

I’ve spent 3 years now wondering why you didn’t take me seriously. Annoyed you refused to acknowledge the revolution occurring. Pissed off I had to jump up and down screaming to have you notice me. Then, while being called spoiled, I realize something;

We do it better. We do it easier. We do it on our terms.

You are jealous.

I’m not stupid.

Hate. Criticize. Do whatever makes you feel better. I’m going to conduct the business of mommyblogging. The best of my community will continue to rise, the less transparent will fall. The typical cycle of any new medium will play itself out from rockstar, front page headlines to being replaced with the next best thing.

I’m not stupid.

And while it all plays out, my spoiled self will have paid some bills, met some amazing people, engaged in some unreal opportunities, all while you called me spoiled in my oversaturated market.

I’m not stupid.

I will also continue to do what I do, WHY I do it- for this hobby that became a business, but was always about my friends, my life, and my community.

I’m not stupid.

Spoiled…but not stupid.

Once again, I am amazed

I’m at BlogHer ’08 in San Francisco.

But I wanted to quickly introduce you to BlogHer’s newest blogger.

Michelle Obama

Click. Read.


Kicking Off BlogHer: my friends, and Katie Couric

Ok, I’m getting all geeked out. And listen, if you are not coming, drop me your phone number and we will call and pass the phone around. I’m not kidding either.

Check out Katie Couric giving a shout-out to those of us heading to San Francisco, with a special hello to my very good friends Sarah (who sang at my wedding, people) and Devra who are two of the five women making the cross country trip Katie speaks of.

Yeah, I’m getting a little misty.

Obama, Me, And BlogHer’s Questions

My exclusive sit-down with Senator Barack Obama for

Senator Barack Obama & Erin Kotecki Vest -Yes ME!

Senator Barack Obama and Erin Kotecki Vest of

Senator Barack Obama answered the questions drafted by the BlogHer community in an exclusive, one-on-one, video interview in Roseburg, Oregon.

More to come-check BlogHer for the video as I travel from Eugene, Oregon home to Los Angeles.

Thank you Senator Obama!