If you are good at doing something, anything really, in this life… some one will watch, imitate, copy and perhaps outright steal or expand on that thing. I’ve experienced this first hand. I’ve been blogging since 2010 when barely anyone was blogging and there certainly wasn’t much money to be made from it. I’ve seen bloggers come and go. Some evolved into influencers. Some moved on to something new. But it’s easier than ever to become a blogger or influencer thanks to the few who started so long ago. Those were the blue prints. Although my following is modest, I consider myself an OG blogger especially in the Black blogger community. Many people may not know me, but I’m probably one of your favorite bloggers, favorite blogger. That may be a little narcissistic of me to say but if I don’t believe it, who else will LOL. The thing about being a creative is to continue to evolve and move with what’s moving to remain relevant. There are trendsetters and there are followers. There’s nothing wrong with being either or, as most people are, a little of both. But trust and believe if you are a trendsetter, you will undoubtedly be imitated. 

Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of being plagiarized. It was probably the biggest violation in this life that I’ve ever felt. That’s how serious I take my writing. Not only did this person steal almost word for word my entire blog post, she didn’t even bother to change the links (which were my own bit.ly and affiliate links LOL). How rude. But I guess thanks because the money from those affiliate link commissions went into my pocket. I’ve had my blog posts, posting schedule, video schedule, mannerisms, Instastories daily greetings and rituals, hell even vacations (down to my exact poses in a whole other country) copied. Mostly by people close to me, who comment on every post or watch every video and most of which have a substantial following compared to mine. Does is bother me…HELL YES! I am only human.
But I find that it’s pretty pointless to confront these people. Oftentimes they admire you and don’t even notice that they are essentially attempting to hijack your persona. It’s usually people with no real sense of self or any idea what they’re doing (that you’re an expert at) who’s first resort is to copy. Confrontation usually leads to defensiveness in these situations. If it get’s to the point that an imitator’s essence thievery (yes, I just made up that term and it’s dope) is affecting your mental well-being and slowing down your productivity because you’re so focused on them not stealing the next thing, BLOCK THEM. If you happen to be friends with said unintentional thief, MUTE THEM. I find that passive aggressiveness works better in this situation than confrontation unless you have ALL THE RECEIPTS.

Isabel Marant Jumpsuit | & Other Stories Sandals | Fendi Bag via Rebag


There is a thin line between inspiration and imitation. Most people think if it’s working for you it will work for them. Sometimes it will and sometimes it won’t. That’s the chance you take when you’re a creative and you’re great at what you do. I love that I can inspire people to try something new when it comes to fashion or travel or makeup. Part of being an influencer is the ability to inspire and influence people to try things. I’m incredibly humbled that so many people value what I have to say. The thing you have to remember is no matter how much someone copies or imitates you, they can never be you and that’s your superpower. What helps me in these situations is knowing that what is for me is for me. No matter what someone copies, or imitates or steals, I’m still going to get what is destined for me. What’s for me won’t miss me and isn’t deterred by someone else attempting to be me. Trust me, it’s probably harder for them to keep up with you than it is for you to just do you naturally. And of course every so often I have to repeat those mantras over and over a few times while consuming a glass of Merlot but eventually it sinks in. I put the focus back on me and get ready to receive what’s already mine. 

xx

Monroe

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14 Comments

  1. Jasmine Terry
    May 6, 2019 / 1:28 pm

    That’s insane that someone would jack your whole vibe, but that just means that you’re doing something right. Not that it makes it right, but if you wanted to find a bright side about it, that would be it. You inspire me to get to this place. A place and mindset of peace and happiness. And even though you said that your coins had lowered, we can tell how happy you are. You are radiant and shining, and its an amazing thing to see. So, thank you for sharing yourself and your life! Can’t wait to see what you come up with next!

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 6, 2019 / 2:09 pm

      Girl it’s so tiring. But you are completely right. Thank you for reading and for your support!

      xx
      Monroe

  2. May 6, 2019 / 1:58 pm

    Yesss!! Those last few sentences said it all! You’re the only one who can be the best you out there, no matter how hard folks may try to swagger jack lol! Great post.

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 6, 2019 / 2:08 pm

      Thanks love! I appreciate you reading and commenting.

      xx
      Monroe

  3. Deidre
    May 6, 2019 / 7:01 pm

    Wonderfully written. What God has for me is for me! ❤️

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 7, 2019 / 8:34 am

      Thank you for reading! YES!

      x
      Monroe

  4. Chloe B
    May 6, 2019 / 7:10 pm

    I’ve been rocking with you since the genesis of your blog, when it was rare to see a melanin rich sister blogger who was successful and had content that was worth consuming. I was so excited to visit everyday to view what was new and fresh. I have seen how you have an excellent creative eye and a sense of self, that is what kept me coming back. It is a shame that those who are inspired cannot simply give props to the originators, the true innovators and stop imitating. Unfortunately that is the way it goes, in history those who are the charlatans tend to get the upper hand because their louder and are willing to do anything to get seen. Keep your creativity energy going and intact, don’t let imitators stop your flow and keep calling out the fakery!

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 7, 2019 / 8:34 am

      Wow thanks so much. I appreciate your support. You are so right too!

      xx
      Monroe

  5. May 7, 2019 / 6:41 am

    I resonated with this post because I always experience this. I call it the African market mentality. As when people see someone being successful at one thing everyone jumps on the bandwagon. I admire how you deal with the imitators. I do believe it is the best way.

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 7, 2019 / 8:33 am

      So true LOL. Thanks so much for reading!

      xx
      Monroe

  6. May 10, 2019 / 11:24 pm

    I needed to read this post TODAY! We all know who that person is in our lives, and it is super annoying! But like, you said, confronting it brings a whole new drama. And in fact, I now use it as an additional motivation! The more it happens, the harder I go. Thank you for your honesty! xo

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 11, 2019 / 10:27 am

      Thanks so much for reading! Glad it could help.

      Best,
      Monroe

  7. May 16, 2019 / 3:29 pm

    So sorry this happen to you girl! I admire you work and you inspire me however I am not that consistent to copy anyone lol. Some people just don’t like to work smart and hard anymore. Keep doing you and your readers will know what’s what!
    #blackgirlmagic

    • monroesteele
      Author
      May 17, 2019 / 8:15 am

      Thanks so much! I’ve made my peace with it. Thank you for reading!

      xx
      Monroe

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