Code of Conduct for Bloggers and Readers?

September 9, 2007

I was reading a past article on the Straits Times’ Digital Life section and was quite intrigued by the topic “Do bloggers and readers, need a code of conduct?”

Everyone regards the internet as a tool for them to communicate as well as at the same time, allow them to conceal their real identity. People can thus freely air their views online without fear of ever being identified. But this poses as a real danger to people, especially the young ones because information posted on their blogs may indirectly affect or influence the ideas of people who read it.

Do you agree with the statement, “Bloggers need a code of conduct, be it formalised or unwritten”?

Personally, I feel that it is unnecessary. If there were such a code of conduct, it’s going to restrict a lot of freedom on what people can write about, give their opinions or basically bitch about. The code of conduct serves as a boundary for bloggers because now, they would have to take into consideration the consequences of what they blog or say. It may make blogging seem more rigid.

That however implementing the code is not naturally bad. Words can be hurtful especially if it were directed for just impulsive and petty reasons, can thus be prevented (but i doubt it can prevent much). Moreover, bloggers who come under the fire of readers for their opinions would thus more protected by the online community, so long as they abide by the code.

Perhaps the code of conduct will serve to protect the bloggers more than the readers especially if it was implemented to protect bloggers from criticisms and attacks from blog readers. But one must recognise that these days, blog readers are also quite vengeful in the words that they leave as comments on the blogs.

I certainly think that it’s good for people to observe basic online etiquette such as leaving your name and contact email if you were to leave a comment on a blog and perhaps bloggers can also be more aware and self-impose a code of conduct on themselves (where they don’t blog vulgar, toooooo personal and too obscene stuff).

It’s good to make sure that the online community is a safe haven for people to be in. Because only then, can interactions online be fun, enjoyable and interesting amongst bloggers and blog readers.

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2 Comments

  • Reply Terence September 13, 2007 at 2:59 AM

    A code of conduct exists whether you like it or not. Particularly in Singapore, there are certain OB markers that are already in place, set by the government and netizens. As you mentioned, basic ettiquette is observed when posting comments etc., and these are quite universally recognized.

    As for a more formal system of decent behaviour though,there is simply no need for it now, as self-regulated control is quite sufficient. That said, as the blogging medium evolves to become a more recognized form of self-expression and information dissemination, we might see it happening after all.

  • Reply -:-queen_pat-:- September 14, 2007 at 12:43 AM

    Hi Terence!

    Haha.. your comment is written by a true-blue journalist, YOU! It’s true that a code of conduct exists with rules set by the government and netizens, especially those related to blogging about politics, racial issues etc. But sometimes, it’s not enough to protect bloggers from personal attacks from their blog readers. Take the attack that i got through snail mail some time back. The person first attacked me by making comments on my blog and finally sent me an insulting letter to my house. I don’t think that the current code of conduct, protects me in any way from such harrassment. A more formal set will perhaps?

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