Privacy for Profit: Commodifying Privacy in Lifestyle Blogging

Commercial lifestyle bloggers in Singapore publicize their personal lives on blogs and social media, using their lifestyles as a vehicle to advertise goods and services. Women bloggers engage with readers by performing a blog ‘persona’ (Abidin & Thompson 2012) that is created for their business, and distinct from their real identities. This persona is premised upon sharing the personal, usually publically inaccessible aspects of their life. Therefore, privacy becomes a commodity that is manipulated and performed to advance their careers. In this paper I conduct a processual analysis of how bloggers sacrifice, balance, and, privilege privacy throughout the life cycle of their career. They do so in relation to their readership, family, attention, and status. Privacy is no longer personal seclusion in which one is free from public attention. Rather, it is manipulated as a commodity for profitable gain.

Abidin, C. (2014) “Privacy for Profit: Commodifying Privacy in Lifestyle Blogging” IR15, Association of Internet Researchers, Daegu. Oct 23, 2014.

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