Pit Notes: Blogger Ethics

With a focus on bloggers in the Tom-Tom and The Autowriters Spotlight we add some helpful comments on the art by Jay Rosen, journalism professor at New York University and Press Think blogger where they were posted:

Jay Rosen
Jay rosen

Dave Winer, one of the founders of blogging, says a blog is not defined by the software or features in the format (like comments) but by a person talking: ‘one voice, unedited, not determined by group-think.’ Blogging, he says, is ‘writing without a safety net’ and taking personal responsibility for the words.”

Rosen continues, “If ‘ethics’ are the codification in rules of the practices that lead to trust on the platform where the users actually are—which is how I think of them—then journalists have their ethics and bloggers have theirs:

  • Good bloggers observe the ethic of the link.
  • They correct themselves early, easily and often.
  • They don’t claim neutrality but they do practice transparency.
  • They aren’t remote, they habitually converse.
  • They give you their site, but also other sites as a proper frame of reference. (As with the blogroll.)
  • When they grab on to something they don’t let go; they “track” it.

In all these ways, good bloggers build up trust with a base of users online. And over time, the practices that lead to trust on the platform where the users actually are… these become their ethic, their rules.”

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