Public blacklists–lists of people an individual doesn’t recommend working with–can be found on many profiles on Internet modeling sites. They are often fueled by anger and judgement, and are usually created and added to during the heat of the moment, while one is angry due to the actions of the very person they’re blacklisting. The list-maker usually just wants to “get back” at the person whom they feel wronged them, and quite often, the list maker doesn’t pause to think of the consequences to themselves that these lists often have.
Consequences for the person with the list, instead of the people on the list? You bet!
As someone who takes what she does seriously, I don’t like the idea of working with someone who’s got a flake list a mile long (or even just a handful of names) on their profile page. In fact, it makes me wonder what in the world that person has done to cause so many people to no show up, or otherwise not deliver as promised. But instead of asking what the deal is, I’ll just move on and find someone else to work with, because it’s far less of a headache.
Additionally, a profile that’s got a “do not recommend” list on it makes me wonder if the only purpose of the list itself is to get vengeance on someone, and not actually help out the person who might be looking to work with the person on the list. With a blacklist telling only one side of the story, it’s quite possible that (for example) the model ended up there because she refused to let herself be pressured into shooting something she wasn’t comfortable with, and the photographer put here there to get back at her for not giving him what he wants. Or maybe the model’s there because she refused to TF* with the photographer, but paid his biggest competitor for a shoot. Maybe she bugged him for 6 months asking for images from a TF* shoot, and he got sick of it and blacklisted her. It’s impossible to know.
A blacklist also means that I have to be concerned about ending up on a blacklist. Not because I’m a flake, but because if something out of my control were to happen to spoil the shoot, would it earn me a spot on that list, or would I not have to worry? That doesn’t appeal to me in the least. I’d rather just not book with that person, because then I don’t have to worry about finding out. Given the choice, I’d rather work with someone I trust to deliver and not hold a grudge than someone who’s got a list on his or her profile.
And that brings me to another point. Experiences vary by person, and sometimes, personalities just don’t match up, making working together a challenge. What one person might view as ok behavior, another might think is a diva attitude. A joke a photographer tells on set might make one model laugh, and could offend another. You get the idea. Because of this, it’s hard to take blacklists seriously. How do you know the reason the photographer or model is on that person’s blacklist is more than just a simple personality difference, which resulted in a strained or awkward shoot? You don’t.
That said, how do you even know the 2 parties worked together? A friend of mine was put on a blacklist by someone because they had a disagreement on one of the modeling site forums. They’d never worked together, never talked about working together, and weren’t even in the same state. But because there was an argument on the forums, my friend was blacklisted. (It was asked by site moderators, later, that the person with the list limit it only to people they’d actually booked work with, and to remove people they’d simply disagreed with in the forums. But yea…)
What if you get the other side of the story?
I suppose one could message everyone on someone’s blacklist, but who has time for that? I don’t. I’d much rather just work with someone who keeps their drama to themselves. If they have drama, that is 😉
In a nutshell? Having a blacklist on your profile makes you look like a grudge-holding drama queen. And that’s a bad thing.
Keep your blacklist private, and share specific experiences if asked. Much more professional.