Looking for Regional Information?

Blogging Ethics

By Charles Hopkins Published 01/17/2007 | Blogs

While blogs do give anyone with a computer and Internet access a voice, and the freedom to say what they want to say, there is a code of ethics that exists for bloggers. If you want to get along with others in the blogosphere, you need to learn and apply that code of ethics no matter what type of blog you want to start.

When publishing entries, make sure that you are always honest and fair in your writing. This means that you should never plagiarize. You should always name and link to sources that you quote, and sources that you use, even if you do not quote them directly. Do not misrepresent your blog or blog entries with misleading titles, photos, descriptions, or any other element of your blog or blog entries.

Do not alter photographs in anyway, unless you let your readers know that the photograph was in fact altered and how. Do not publish false information make sure that you check your facts and quote your sources for those facts. 

In everything that you do online, remember that behind every computer is a human being. Never publish information that is meant to hurt or defame another human being. Nobody is going to censor you, but they can sue you so you need to censor yourself. Always publish appropriate content for your readers. For instance, do not publish adult content on a blog that is accessible by children. If you will have adult content on your site, or any content that may offend any one of any age group, make sure that you post a warning before the content is visible.

Respect the privacy of others. For instance, dont ever publish someones social security number, unlisted phone number, or other facts such as this. Do not publish private information about ones life. For instance, if you know that your neighbors son is gay, this is not information that you need to share with the entire world.

Be accountable and responsible for what you post on your blog. If you make mistakes, make sure that you admit to those mistakes and correct them as soon as possible. Respect the comments that are left on your blog, even if you do not agree with the comment or if the commenter doesnt agree with what you have posted. Different views and opinions make the world go round.

Remember that human beings will be reading your blog. Avoid racial slurs and defamatory remarks. There is no place for this type of thing in cyber space. The Internet has allowed us to break so many barriers, and racism is one of those barriers. Respect the human beings on the other side of those computer screens in all of your writing.

Again, these ethics are not meant to censor you. You can still write anything you want, just make sure that you write it in an ethical way and respect humanity while you do it. Not only will this show the blogosphere that you are an ethical person, you will also avoid legal problems. When you defame others, they can sue you and they will win.