Should Bloggers Stop Using "Whore" and "Pimp"?

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The Blogging Betties don't often deal with controversial topics, but recently, a word got dropped into our laps that created a little discussion behind the scenes:

Whore.

If you caught our podcast with Lance Burton of Lefty Pop, you probably didn't miss his new mantra, "Be a whore" (which, incidentally, he picked up during a BlogHer '14 seminar). Lance was of course referring to getting your work and your message out there with reckless abandon, not encouraging us all to go stand on street corners. And incidentally, if you spend even ten seconds with him, you'll realize he's the least misogynistic guy on the planet (I mean, come on —he has a leftist website and writes stuff about the Axe body spray guy messing up Pinterest with porn).

Words like whore —and pimp — get thrown around a lot these days. If you're a person who deals with the blogging/publishing/advertising biz, you may even hear those words coming from people whose only interaction with a prostitute has been Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. They're just trying to move their stuff through cyberspace. Thanks for pimping my post. I'm such a comment whore. Be sure to pimp so-and-so, she's awesome.

Get In On The Convo: Should Bloggers Stop Using Whore and Pimp?photo credit :http://500px.com/CarluzFoto

While we all know what a whore is historically, the word has definitely morphed over the years to take on non-sexual meanings. Merriam-Webster's third definition is "a venal or unscrupulous person," so it "officially" has a meaning other than sex for hire. But probably more telling is Urban Dictionary, where the second most popular definition to come up is, "Someone who does something excessively." As in, "He's such a camping whore."

It seems that words like "whore" and "pimp" are going the way of "bitch" and "n*gga" (which, sorry, still can't even write that one in its entirety). While I understand the idea behind claiming a word and sucking the power from it, I still can't say I'm positively thrilled with the idea of comparing the practice of asking people to read or listen to something I've created with the act of selling my body for money. And let's not even get started about the not-so-cute realities that are experienced daily by so many women, men, and children—like human trafficking, rape, and domestic violence.

So what do we do? Do we stop using a word that, frankly, pretty aptly describes how many of us feel every day when we have to push our wares on Facebook? Do we boycott it with a hashtag on Twitter to try to bring "awareness" to the problem (until everyone gets tired and moves on to something new)? Do we just let it slowly sink into the vernacular and hope everyone understands what we really mean?

Like I said, I'm not a fan. But I don't like censoring, either. Not to mention, I'm all about using anything and everything at my disposal when and if necessary when writing, talking, or whatevering.

So what do you think? Are you pro-whoring it up or against any kind of pimping? "Vocabularily" speaking, that is...

Tammy blogs at World's Worst Moms and does a weekly podcast with her gal pals, the Blogging Betties.

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