Queen Of The Sky’s Blogger Rights :: Do you have a lifeguard?

Shel Holtz posted about The Queen of Sky’s Blogger Bill of Rights campaign.

She refers to some companies as “blogophobic”. As you’ll see at her site, The Queen has had to back off on some of her targets. She suggests that some bloggers might boycott those companies that are not ‘blog tolerant’ – or have fired employees for blogging.

In a perfect world – a kind world – the employers would have dealt with all of those situations in a better, gentler manner. I wish The Queen of Sky – and the others – would get their jobs back, or their back pay – benefits, etc..

Ya’ know, blogging is kind of like swimming without a lifeguard or using the hotel’s diving board. We all blog at our own risk.

Yes, companies would be wise to at least establish some base ‘rules’ for any employee engaged in publishing online. However, I don’t want us to forget that the employee has a responsibility to ‘announce’ their blogs to their employers, too. Well, you do if you want to avoid a similar fate as The Queen of Sky, Jeremy Wright, Troutgirl, Dooce and others. Even then, though, you probably aren’t safe. All of those bloggers mentioned above do have differing stories for why they were fired, but I use them as examples of bloggers getting the lil’ pink slip.

Companies/organizations would be wise to buy into their employee blogs and help guide them with regard to what is, and is not, allowed. The bad news buzz accumulated from the firings serves no positive purpose. These are all opportunities lost.

For me, my immediate ‘supervisors’ know I’m blogging – as well as my students. I don’t know if they’ve ever actually read anything in my blog – or the student’s blogs, either. But, at least they are aware. No one said, “Hey, go blog.” They do know my personality. They have a good idea as to what I perceive as ‘proper decorum’ and behaviour. Likewise, no one has said, “Don’t blog.” They have said things like, “Thanks for keeping tabs on the blogging thing.” They are glad the students are involved. They appreciate the new channel and its use as a tactic. They see this as a positive learning experience.

Still, I’m without a lifeguard here and I have to accept the responsibility for my posts, just like everyone else has to accept responsibilty for theirs.

As Foghorn Leghorn would say, “Luckily, I keep my feathers numbered for just such an emergency.”

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2 thoughts on “Queen Of The Sky’s Blogger Rights :: Do you have a lifeguard?

  1. Jeremy

    I’m always in the minority on certain issues, and on this one, I side with the corporate world (eh, I’m just an old Reaganite).

    We are at a crossroads, and we need to have corporate guidelines for what can and cannot be blogged about. It needs to be part of the employee guidelines, but these “blogger bill of rights” aren’t going to do it. But, there are too many cogs in large corporations that want to show their importance, and will unwittingly blog or leak information. We can all think of one little Apple blog that seems to get information a couple weeks early …

    Ah, let’s be honest. Blogging is a total PITA for corporate America.

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