I want to start by saying that while there are two sides to every story, I can't see a legitimate reason that "a girl" I know should be afraid to utter her own personal name, why that same girl can't remove her own personal posts from a hijacked Instagram her former employer now has control of, or why a company as large as they are convinced a young designer to sign a contract without a lawyer and then refused to renegotiate once she became older, wiser, more sparkly, and had attorneys to help her.
It's like a Taylor Swift song/scenario, and while I'm certain "that girl" (who's name I'm not even sure I can legally use in this blog post because of JLM's lawsuit (seriously - it's very Harry Potter/Voldermort'ish which is crazy) will come out on top one day I can't imagine what it feels like today to be living her reality.
2020 has taken so much from the wedding industry and it pains me that it may have taken away my dream designer.
The reality that 1.2 million of her followers are now under the impression that "she" is the one liking their posts, resharing their photos, and communicating with them. Or you know, the 1.2 million who didn't also follower on on her podcast Instagram (which thankfully, she didn't use HER OWN NAME FOR or she would have lost that, too).
Take a second to watch her announce the news here, and then keep reading: Resigning from JLM
I had a few thoughts while watching this as someone who has followed/interacted with her for a couple of years now.
I almost never see her smile, and her entire demeanor here hurt me to watch.
I personally have a long conversation thread with "that girl" on "her" Instagram and it makes me uncomfortable knowing that now her former employer or whoever they chose to run her Instagram now has access. While it's nothing "embarrassing" or private even it was still a conversation between her and I - and I imagine she has thousands of conversations that are actually private, between her and friends/family, her and vendors, and her and her followers. I would not be okay with someone hijacking my Instagram and having access to every relationship, every friendship, every partnership and our private conversations. How is that even legal?
I immediately changed URLs to galleries I had sent her, specifically, of weddings/sessions/shoots that had images of her gowns because she's who I had given permission to use them and something about the new "ghost" behind her Instagram potentially posting them "as her" is upsetting for many reasons. One of which, that I consider it one of my career heights when she re-posted an image I had taken of a local model onto her feed and then followed me. It was a very, "I finally made it" moment for me.
I worry how this will impact small boutiques that sell her gowns (like my friend Brooke's). & hope people understand that her gowns already at those boutiques are pre-purchased, so by not buying them in a show of solidarity it hurts small businesses. I also felt a knee-jerk reaction of, "Well, guess I won't be buying an "HP" gown if that's how they treat her," before remembering what following through on that statement could mean for places like my friend Brooke's boutique.
How would it feel not to be able to say my own name online? I don't even know because it seems like an impossible situation - but here we are, and there she is.
I can not support JLM- and un-followed their page. Hijacking her account probably seemed like a smart move on their part (her follower count and community was ten times what theirs was) but if suddenly her page has a mass exodus at least they don't get the satisfaction of speaking to HER audience and maybe they'll give it back if it doesn't benefit them like they hope it will to "be" her; there's only one her. I would really encourage my friends/fellow wedding vendors to do the same and to follow her All That Glitters page until she regains control of HER accounts; the fact they have her Tik Tok and Pinterest as well as Instagram boggles my mind.
Very few "big" names in the industry are as down to Earth, personable, and relatable as she is. Even fewer love glitter and colorful things as much as I do - so it felt personal when I watched her try not to cry while explaining how her dream job and brand have been essentially taken from her (yeah - SHE quit, but they backed her into a corner... not the same as her choosing to leave).
2020 has taken enough from people and I hate that this is what her 2021 will start like.
I hate that there will most definitely be a negative impact on boutiques that have spent all of 2020 struggling as is.
I just, hate it.
I hate it for her.
For her brides.
For her clients.
For her followers.
& I, and many others, are waiting for her to let us know how we can help her.
For starters - we can encourage people to un-follow her hijacked page and to follow the one she has control of (here, if you missed the previous link).