You’ve all heard of the cheeky, charming, lighthearted recipe-based (but so much more besides) website, Lovin’ Dublin. Right? Probably.
It’s everywhere at the minute. In every company’s lunch time of a Wednesday courtesy of the genius initiative that is Lovin’ Box (which, in fairness, is pretty clever and though I’ve never had one I would love to try one). On your Twitter, on your Facebook newsfeed, on Instagram, the #minireview hashtag is one I love checking out. I love the recipes, for the most part. I love the reviews, for the most part. I love its intention: giving Dublin’s cultural and foodie development the spotlight it deserves, and making sure people are eating in and enjoying Dublin at its very best.
I like it so much, in fact, that I wrote a piece on Dublin’s Best Virgins (cocktails, people. Keep your hats on…) for it and got a grand aul response. As a Dublin girl, I should feel nothing but proud of this beacon of love for my home city.
What is it about the site that has, lately, left a bitter taste in my mouth that even one of the delicious looking recipes can’t rid me of?
The fact that more often than not, I’m offended (either directly or on behalf of someone else) by what Niall Harbison, the site’s creator, writes.
I’m not easily offended, and I’d never be described as someone who attends every argument they’re invited to. I don’t usually engage in online bickering because in general, I reckon it’s a bit pointless. But I read something earlier that was so pretentious and downright disappointing that I just had to write about it.
This whole passage about bridge jumping “knackers” just makes me sad. The least clever form of humour is the humour that requires you to tear strips off someone else in order to be funny. I found this post neither funny, nor clever. Likewise, this:
I’m from Dublin. But I’m also from Ireland, and sure, there might be differences between people from different counties but “a complete muck savage bogger up on the train for the day…” is not a sentence I’d ever use on a blog that talks about positivity and growth and development. And for the record, I’m from Dublin and I’m totally SH*TE at using chopsticks. It seems some of the Lovin’ Dublin commenters feel a similar way…
This sort of stuff isn’t present in every post of his, granted, but in enough to make me want to ignore a post when I see the “By Niall Harbison” bio on a post. With a platform like Lovin’ Dublin, a bit of responsibility should probably be exercised. And whoever is in charge of the editorial integrity of the site needs to stand up to the creator and say ah heyor.
Without getting too ranty about it, I just want to say this. To anyone and everyone. If you claim to love Dublin, don’t set about insulting the people that live there. In fact, an idea might be to stick to positivity and steer clear entirely from the insults – isn’t that the point of the website in the first place?
PS. I’m half expecting that if anyone other than my dad reads this I might get a bit of abuse for writing it. And I’ll be honest, I’m scared of that. I hate wading in with opinions because I’m totally afraid to offend anyone and hate confrontation. But I just feel like I had to say something! So go on. Lambaste.