Week 3 Reading Response Continued: Ethical Blogging

September 20, 2006 at 8:30 pm 3 comments

Karen Schneider hears warning bells when she thinks of librarians and blog technology.  Do they really understand the new technology or is this to be the next “filtering wars” of the 90’s?  As Karen states, “the stakes are even higher, because we’re creating highly visible, globally available content.”  But maybe we don’t have to experience the “filtering wars” again, maybe all we need is a code of ethics, which for librarians should really be an extension of our existing ‘information best practices’.  As Karen suggests it is the librarians’ task to provide accurate, reliable, and unbiased information, regardless of the medium.  If we follow some common sense principles like: be conscientious of copyright (if you didn’t write it cite it or in the case of blogs link it!) and disclose the potential of all biases, and distinguish between opinions and fact, there may be hope of a future for libraries in the blogosphere.

Just a quick thought about disclosure of biases.  I got thinking about some of the articles from the first week, when we talked about learning more about yourself and your biases as you blog (I think it was another Rebecca Blood article).  What if you have biases that you are not aware of and you, unintentionally of course, project this into your blog without notifying your audience?  (Yes, I’m a tad paranoid.)  I suppose you’ll find out pretty quickly when your readers respond, but what about your “blogger reputation”? Well lucky for me I read on before I became too paranoid about my subconscious biases!  It’s so simple, when you’re wrong, ADMIT IT!  You will hurt your reputation less if you admit you were unaware of your bias, or if you change your stance, or you were down right wrong about something!  So there is always hope for saving face, so long as you blog ethically!  Okay so now we know how to save face, but how can we avoid the need to save face whenever possible?  Well, Rebecca Blood is so smart because she suggests writing each post as if it couldn’t be changed!  Imagine that, don’t treat it as “just a blog” like Schneider warns against, treat it as a final draft, don’t post it unless you are sure you won’t want to change it, and like Blood suggests don’t be sneaky either, don’t just go in and change a past post because you changed your mind, own up, fess up, talk about it in a new post!  That’s what these things are for right, conversation, and intellectual growth?

On another note, I was sad to find the cyberjournalist.net site was temporarily unavailable by the time I got to it.  Not only was it a posted reading but it was also a recommend link from Schnieders article L  Guess we’ll have to just keep watching to see when it is up again.

Last note for this post I swear!  I just finished reading the “Why and How to Use Blogs to Promote Your Library’s Services” article and it emphasizes in a number of places the importance of brevitiy for a library blog.  Haha it made me giggle because I just realized I an not going to be the worlds best blogger since brevity is something I’ve yet to master 😉


Entry filed under: LIS 757 Weekly Reading Comments, Uncategorized.

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. shadowandflame  |  September 22, 2006 at 5:06 pm

    Oh, I think brevity’s not as important for a personal blog – being interesting is the essential thing there. 🙂

  • 2. Vicki  |  September 22, 2006 at 5:31 pm

    I like that and I’d also like to discount brevity in course blogging….I just tend to have to much to say!! haha

  • 3. amanda  |  September 23, 2006 at 3:13 pm

    I think you’re both right – brevity is really not all that important for the kind of blogging we’re doing here. Also, I’m starting to think that brevity in blogs in general is a thing of the past. As a couple of last week’s readings suggested, we’ve moved beyond the “linklog” blogs where all we do is link to interesting things and provide a few comments about those links. While those blogs still do exist, there are fewer of them than there used to be. And while libraries/librarians could/can do a great job of doing this sort of link “curation”, I’ve become more of a fan of blogs where the library/librarian has a human voice and tells the library’s stories.

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