Monday, March 28, 2011

A Learning Experience

So I thought writing for a website I really liked, College Candy, was going to be a great idea. They were looking for someone to take on a month-long challenge and I emailed them saying I'd like to try giving up chocolate for a month. I didn't even think they would respond being a busy and successful website, but they did and I was excited! You may have seen me post about starting this challenge!

I must say this has been an eye opening experience on how important credibility and professionalism are.

For the first article, they posted it up "By: CC Staff" even though they knew my name and I even sent a picture! But, alright fine, I let it go. I asked to have my blog link in there just to show that I wrote it and didn't think it would be a big deal. They never responded and didn't add it, but the article looked great and I was so excited about being published on a popular website that I didn't even care I couldn't eat chocolate!

The second week however, was different. Words were changed and sentences added without asking me. Not a huge deal, but what really miffed me was that it now said "By Lauren *last name*" and it wasn't my name. It was the editor who I send the articles to. Definitely made it look like she wrote it without any credit to me whatsoever.

I was mad. I want to stay professional with everything I do and sent a nice email with my third article asking if I could get some credit because I'd love to use these published articles in a portfolio. A friend pointed out, perhaps this was a mistake since we are both named Lauren? Maybe. Didn't get a response and when the third article was posted it said "By CC Staff" again.

Oooo best part. They added this sentence that made me sound disgusting: "And really, even if I have a few cheats here and there, it’s still way better than what I would normally doing, right? A petite red velvet cake is still a step up from an entire sleeve of Girl Scout cookies….every day." No, I didn't write that and I don't eat an entire sleeve of cookies every day, thanks!

So now I have one more to write. I have to admit that being so aggravated over this, I gave up giving up chocolate. I don't even care anymore since I proved to myself I could do it for a few weeks. So then I was left with a decision: do I even write and send in a last article? In the end with advice from some journalism friends, I decided to send it in.

But I also wanted to write this blog to warn my blog friends about their website and ensure they don't offer to write for them and go through the same experience. It was definitely a learning experience. I realized you're not always going to deal with a professional website, you perhaps won't get the credit you deserve, and you'll get ignored even if you're doing them a favor.

Live & Learn.


  1. WOW! I am glad you shared your experience with your personal blog readers. That is beyond frustrating. It is one thing for them to edit your paper for grammar and put CCS staff- but to give credit to someone else AND add that paragraph is not ethical. Not that it makes it ok, by any means, but perhaps it is run by college students and not professionals? Was this supposed to be a volunteer basis or paid? I would report your story to the Better Business Bureau.

    p.s. CONGRATS on a successful no chocolate challenge!

  2. Thanks! I wasn't sure if I would post my experience but thought it would be something others can relate to! I'm not really sure who it is run by and I volunteered to do this for free. I found out that no one is really paid for their articles and this happens to others.

  3. So sorry that happened! I think that College Candy is actually run by college students.. Regardless though, them publishing an article without crediting you as the author is essentially plagarism. Adding in the stuff about the girl scout cookies is just plain unprofessional.

    I hope they at least give you credit for your work soon!

  4. Yeah they are going to be screwed in the real world if that is how they are running their site now! Thanks Allison!


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