Blogher 2011: A reference guide to common blogger types

This week, I’m officially attending my sixth blogher conference. I first came to Blogher 2006 as a nervous newbie, excited to meet the women who I can now call friends. (Click over and see how far we’ve come in five years. Especially our haircuts.) I handed out buttons that read I swear I’m funnier on my blog, and the BIG BLOGGERS deigned to wear them.

Blogher 2006 with Kristen and Izzy, where "designer pasties" were the only swag.

That’s when I first realized that for the most part, bloggers are nice. Especially mom bloggers. So I’ve pretty much spent the last five years trying to convince panicky new Blogher attendees that very thing.

Two years ago, I provided a helpful guide to help you distinguish between popular people and bloggers. This year I thought with 3000 people (!!) attending, I’d take it one step forward and help you identify some of the types you’ll be encountering over the course of the weekend.

Ideally I’d illustrate an icon for each one and make them into a Bingo card, but eh, I’m just not that good with Illustrator.


The tech savant

She carries extra USB cords in her bag, knows the hotel wi-fi password by heart, and can help you troubleshoot your VPN issues. Be best friends with her.


The den mother

She carries extra Kleenex for the community keynote in her bag, a few protein bars in case you’re hungry, and always knows where the nearest bathroom is. Be best friends with her.


The blogger who asks a question in every single panel

Her patron saint is Catherine Connors. Actually, she might be Catherine Connors. Fortunately, all her questions are smart.


The blogger who insists it doesn’t matter what you wear, and will spend the weekend proving it to you.

Look for the hairy armpit-stained tank top combo. You can’t make her use a hairbrush, dammit.


The blogger who is there for the coupons.

There is indeed a breed of blogger who will spend $500 on a plane ticket, another few hundred on a hotel room, and take four days away from her family only to spend that time amassing $1-off coupons for frozen sausages on the expo floor. Buy her a drink please.


The blogger who is there for the swag

If you spot an expo table with a fishbowl full of business cards and the word “win” anywhere nearby, do not get between her and the table. It is simply not safe.


The blogger who will shamelessly post any photo of you, no matter how unflattering.


Shameless. Circa 2007

The design blogger with the awesome shoes

You will want to not like her, but it is patently impossible. The worst part–she probably made those shoes herself. 60% chance she lives in or around Salt Lake City.


 The sponsor-averse activist

Her mantra: HOW DARE YOU SUBSIDIZE MY TICKET WITH YOUR DIRTY CAPITALIST MONEY.  That said, she will secretly enjoy the free snack bars from the swag bag alone in her room late at night without even checking the ingredient list.


The PR guy who hits on everyone.

There’s always one.


The snobby popular blogger

This is a type I’ve been hearing about for five years now, although I have yet to meet her. I’m convinced she’s a myth, like the Loch Ness Monster or that elusive “Canadian girlfriend” that every guy in junior high claimed to have in summer camp. I’ll believe it when I see photos.


The blogger with the cute baby in a sling

Secret: sometimes it’s not even her own baby. She just does it for the attention.  Shhh.


The happy drunk

There are so many of them, this would be like the free square at the center of the Blogger Bingo board. Watch Twitter light up with them starting around 9PM PT every night.


The uber-networker

This woman is amazing. She hugs everyone, smiles for every photo, and remembers everyone by name without once having to glance at your name tag. She has a special place in her bag just for business cards and they never get dirty or wrinkled. She will probably send a follow-up email to you within a week telling you how nice it was to see you. Gah.


The blogger who hands you her business card even though she’s known you for five years

She is just very excited about having business cards.


The drama starter

There will be roughly 3 of them at Blogher this year, identified by bitter post-conference posts disguised as critical analysis. Really, what they need is a big hug and some Chapstick.


The drama avoider

There will be roughly 2,997 of them at Blogher this year, identified by the fact that they’re having fun.


The supportive tweeter

Every Tweet from her about every panel will include the word awesome, inspiring, or amazing.


The hashtag hijacker

For her, the Twitter feed is simply a way to enter to win things. She might not even be at the conference at all.


The token celebrity

Rumor has it, this year’s roster includes Jane Lynch, Ricki Lake, Indra Nooyi, Bob Harper, Candice Kumai, and Mr. Lady.

2008's token celebrity

The really friendly blogger who will hug you, but will not be able to place your name or face until you mention your blog name and hopes you won’t take it personally. 

Hi. Nice to meet you.


If you’re going to be at Blogher, please say hi! I’m moderating a seriously awesome panel at 10:30 on Friday, participating in a luncheon for Bill My Parents at 11:45 (though I hear it’s waitlist only now), and then you can find me at the Bill My Parents booth on the expo floor on Saturday from 10-11 and1:30-2:30.


105 thoughts on “Blogher 2011: A reference guide to common blogger types”

  1. Okay, if Bob Harper is really there I’m going to be really upset that I decided not to go! LOL

    Also, you forgot the category for me (if I were to go): the guy who’s too shy to come out of his room, unless surrounded by the 2 people he already knows. 🙂

  2. I’ll be the blogger who looks very involved in her phone but is actually looking for someone to talk to. Say hi!

  3. Love this list. But can everyone really be that unjudgemental and funny and with really sleek hair and movie star sunglasses? And yet, I want some of those pasties! Just to wear around the house while I’m vacuuming…

      1. I still have my pasties. I’ll bring them. No, I’ll WEAR them. Get the jump on anyone who might, you know, PUT SHIT ON ME.


  4. So funny and so true. If no one is playing Snobby Popular Blogger this year, I might audition. Going to go practice snubbing my kids right now.

    1. It is a good archetype, if you can handle it. Let me know how it works out. Or better–if I ask you how it works out, just ignore me.

  5. That would be me, Bill. I’m always the one in the corner, trying to look lost in my own thoughts – or clinging to whatever poor soul I recognize. I’ve not been to BlogHer, but I am thinking of going…one of these years. ;-).

    Have fun, Liz! I look forward to reading all about it when you get home.

  6. I had great time reading your list of blogger types, so damn funny! 😀
    Have a great time on the conference!

  7. This is my first year! I’ll hug you as soon as I stop freaking out about how early my plane leaves on thursday (pre 6 am, yikes).

  8. Dammit. i knew I shouldn’t have waxed all my pink facial hair off.

    I think you’ve got it just about right, actually. See you in three days, woman.

  9. Love this list..even if I won’t be there to be the uber networker/ happy drunk:) Hope you all have a blast! I will be there next year..if I have to walk to BlogHer12. LOL

    1. I think I’m *still* that one, even after all these years, Katherine. (I started going the same year Liz did.)

  10. I would be The 40-Something Blogger Out in the Lobby at All the Parties Because I Can’t Converse with Loud Music Anymore. (I’ve found they put the heavy-handed bartenders out there.)

    But sadly, I’m not going this year either. Fingers crossed for East Coast next year.

  11. Can’t wait to see my NYC soul sister! I’ll be the one who never remembers anyone’s name until she’s met them twelve times and/or gotten drunk with them. Yay!

  12. Dude, I wish I could be there this year so I could give you a big hug. I miss you!

    If I were going, I’d be the Typically Sub A-Cup Blogger With a Fantastic Breastfeeding Rack.

    1. I never got the “fantastic rack” while breastfeeding. I have never had cleavage and thought, yeah when the milk comes I will be able to show my “girls” off for once in my life. Nope, nada, I got ripped off!

  13. Do people really not comb their hair? They are probably friends with the “don’t wear any makeup cause I think I am a natural beauty blogger.” A little lipstick and blush never killed anyone!

  14. Oh. Oh man. I snort-laughed. Multiple times. My husband is looking at me like I’m nuts.

    See you this week!

  15. Great list! I’m gonna be the nervous newbie wondering why I decided to leave my house for four days. I’ll have great shoes on, but most likely toilet paper stuck to one of them. I look forward to (not) conversing with the other “very interested in phone” types.

  16. This brings back BlogHer Nostalgia and makes me wish I were going this year! I think I would handily fit into at least two or three of these archetypes (especially the more socially awkward ones).

  17. Very fun post! I look forward to meeting every type mentioned, well…except maybe the stinky one…or the drama mamas.

    But defin YOU! I will be at your luncheon!!

  18. I’ll be the newbie, scanning the room for the faces I’ve been reading for years (like yours!). Then I’ll awkwardly stand there, staring, because I don’t want to interrupt. I’ve got this all planned out!

  19. Ohhh, I remember BlogHer 06 with such fondness. But gah… I hate the 06 pics—I was still so puffy and postpartum-ish. Of course, the rest of you look great 🙂

    1. When you write things like that, Izzy, you make me think you might actually be insane.

      You are gorgeous, and you were then. Intimidatingly, leg-ilishously gorgeous.

      I guess I was a Happy Drunk. Well… a happy member of the tribe of Sasquatch.

      I forgot to make business cards.

    1. No, Comic-Con is over. Trust me, there is no way our convention center could handle a second conference at the same time as Comic-Con.

      Although, that would be an interesting pairing. BlogHer and Comic-Con…

      (I’m a local who is strangely not going to BlogHer. I hope you all have fun here in San Diego!)

  20. I am that last one too. I just pray no one is offended when I say and your Twitter handle is what now?

  21. I’ll be there too. I’m the one who badmouths BlogHer all year then buys my ticket for next year the moment it goes on sale.

  22. Note: to self- be sure to pack the Kleenex. I am that blogger. Also, wish I had thought to accessorize with a baby that is not my own. I’m so not about the swag, but I had a very odd dream last night that I decided to head to BlogHer a day early and then was accused by many people of doing that just for the swag, which was so not true and I was really upset by their claims.
    Also, you don’t *need* my new card, but you will want them because, well, three words: vintage flocked wallpaper.
    I’m looking forward to your panel!
    Uh, also, in my world you were a BIG BLOGGER even way back in 2006.

  23. It will be awesome to see you again. I would like to contribute one more: dad blogger who gets anxiety attacks if he’s not hanging out with a few of his closer mom blogger friends to prove that he is “vetted” and not creepy. aka, Jim.

  24. I know we have met before, once or twice, but remind me to hand you a business card. They are EPIC. And you totally know you want one.

  25. If I were attending (which sadly I am not: no money/PTO) I would most definitely be the happy drunk.

    One year I hope to actually attend and maybe by then you’ll have the bingo cards all ready to print out. =)

  26. “….she’s just really excited about having business cards.”

    There’s a whole lot about blogging stuffed into that little observation.

  27. I am SO the Business Card Blogger. But I make new cards every year, and every year I think they’re so pretty, you know?

    Have fun, all of you. Next year, Blogher should be in Boston. (Keep dreaming, I know)

  28. My goal at BlogHer is to not see any babies or children so I don’t die from the guilt of leaving my boys at home. Sob. I need a few dozen drinks, I think… Didn’t meet you in NYC last year, so hopefully I’ll get to say hello in San Diego!

  29. I was the lone Aussie blogger last year. This year, there are five of us. I will say hi to you at some point, Liz. And what’s a pastie?

  30. Hilarious. And true.

    Pretty sure I’ve seen every one of these people at a conference I’ve been to.

    Hope to see you there Liz! It’s Elaine A. 😉

  31. This is fantastic! I’m a total Den Mother. I actually already have my protein bars packed (with extras, just in case, you know!).

    I’ve been reading Mom 101 for years and have your session on my trusty BlogHer schedule!

  32. “The blogger who hands you her business card even though she’s known you for five years. She is just very excited about having business cards.”

    I desperately want to be this person since I always come home with the EXACT number of business cards in my cutesy card holder that I had upon arrival. Can’t remember to hand out a card for my life.

  33. This will only be my third BlogHer (I go every other year), and I recognize all the types!

    I may not recognize you, but please don’t take it personally if I don’t! I’m really bad at remembering people by sight. My kids gleefully tell me I have this rare disorder they found called “prosopagnosia”, though I don’t think I’m THAT bad!

    And I used to teach school, too, so you can only imagine how impaired I was. “Hey, you, redheaded kid, sit down!” 🙂

    Look for me at BlogHer. I’ll be the confused one.

  34. Oh dear, I guess I’m the I “don’t wear any makeup” blogger, because, well, I never learned how to be a real girl. but I do have a blue streak in my hair.

  35. Sounds like we all might be a little of all these blogger chick. Gonna have to try to make it next year to I can see if my theory is correct. Fun post and enjoy the conference.

  36. Reading all this makes me want to take a couple of shots and get on a plane to CA. It seems so big and scary and overwhelming. I would totally be the one saying “it just got away from me” while holding the bottle of wine.
    Have fun! Maybe I’ll get enough courage one of these years. It sounds amazing!

  37. Love the list. I have been trying to get to BlogHer since 2006 when I started blogging. But alas, my life schedule and BlogHer never seem to work out. I am determined to get there next year and I totally be the “happy drunk” as that will be the only way I get the nerve up to talk to people. Maybe I’ll just hang out in the stall next to Jenny.

  38. Considering I asked my roommates what they wanted me to pick up at Costco before I got to the hotel, and I already have a power strip packed, I’m destined to be the Den Mother aren’t I?

    (if that means people will talk to me though, I’m all for it. Because I’m really the newbie who’s not good at inserting herself into other people’s conversations, which seems like a poor thing to struggle with at BlogHer.)

  39. ‘The blogger who insists it doesn’t matter what you wear, and will spend the weekend proving it to you. Look for the hairy armpit-stained tank top combo. You can’t make her use a hairbrush, dammit.’

    If I’m ever an attendee at one of these conferences, this will be me.

  40. Awesome. Is there a “really loves a ton of bloggers but can’t think of a damn thing to say in the moment” category. That’s my role. Easily confused with “doesn’t want to talk to you” or “is boring.” See you there!

  41. This is awesome. Love it. I’ll be the “BlogHer Newbie who doesn’t really know what she’s doing so she’s wandering around in circles hoping someone asks her to be friends.” Or maybe I’ll just be pacing. Can’t wait to meet all of you!

  42. Love it. I’m the last one, too. And the really awful part is that often it’s somebody I really like, have connected with a ton online and/or hung out with last year, but a) she looks different from her avatar b) she doesn’t pronounce her name the way I pronounce it in my head and therefore her intro doesn’t ring any bells or c) she cut her hair or put on a different outfit and somehow it has acted as a disguise.

  43. Catherine Connors is definitely my patron saint. And yet, I’m also a den mother. Now I’m all confused about my blogger identity.

    (And also trying really hard not to cry actual tears about not being able to make it this year after I thought I could.)

  44. Damn I wish I was there! San Diego, why are you so far away from the East Coast? Have fun. Remember, I’m living vicariously through you!

  45. Great post! I kind of wish I was one of those 2997 BlogHers this year. Alas, being a responsible student kinda stinks. Have a great time, sweetcheeks. xoxo

  46. Maybe one day I’ll actually go to BlogHer. It seemed more plausible back when I had a public blog where I posted my photo and talked about where I lived. Now that I’m anonymous (because I’m a teacher and I don’t want to get “dooced”), that seems less likely. I wouldn’t care about swag, but I would want to meet and talk with other creative writers.

  47. I’m just now reading this now that I’m back, unfortunately. But that made it no less funny. I’m kinda sad we didn’t meet, but would not have been annoyed had you seemed less than thrilled to shake my hand…honestly, I think those rumors of “snobby” bloggers happen simply because someone hits them up at the wrong time. There’s only so much smiling a person can do, I’m thinking.

    I had a blast, and even had a few people wanting to meet me(!!!) with my tiny little blog.
    Can we do it again next month?

    1. I would have been thrilled to shake your hand – promise! Next year it’s a hand-shaking date.

  48. Darn it! I wish I would have gone. It would have been off the charts wonderful to meet you!

  49. I’m probably the Supportive Tweeter, largely because my phone’s keypad is so annoyingly small and fiddly to type on that I get frustrated and tweet lame tweets. When I do have a good tweet ready to send, you can bet that my connection disappears. Lucky for me I got a phone at the HTC event so here’s hoping I’ll send no more lame tweets!
    Enjoyed the Bill My Parents lunch!

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  51. I’ll be the one with the cute baby 🙂 but I swear the baby is mine. And I’ll also have a husband in tow for part of the conference since he jumped at the chance to leave the other 2 kids at my parents and have a few days off.

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