Where Do You Draw The Line On What You Should Blog About?

For some of us, having a blog has become part of our profession. Whether we’re designers, programmers, musicians or simply businesses that rely on the net, it has become a universally sensible thing to use blogs as a means of connecting to the rest of the world, to a market and to our potential clients.

However, for the rest of us, blogging isn’t a necessity, nor is it a prerequisite, nor is it even a recommended tool. Blogging for the most part is a hobby. Something you do during your free time for your reasons of your own benefit. So when your hobbies have nothing to do with your work or career, how far apart would you separate your blog from your work?

Where do you draw the line between what you want to say and what you should say?

I ask this because I’m somewhat disturbed about the ethical conduct some people choose to follow in regards to careers that need a high level of privacy. But it doesn’t matter whether you’re in the medical, scientific or legal profession, it should be said that what is ethically justifiable should come as second nature to our common sense.

You wouldn’t want your pending patents known by your competitors, you wouldn’t want to be subjected to experiments against your will and you certainly wouldn’t want pictures of you delivering your child via cesarean section posted on a blog without your consent. There would be something fundamentally wrong with you if you think that at least has no ethical ramifications, much less legal ones.

In my line of work at least, the dissemination of information to the public goes as far as factual data and ideas that I can chuck around beside the constant pandering toward my emotional state of mind. I have no qualms in giving you an idea of what I do, I’m just bound by certain responsibilities not to share with you everything that I do. That is where I draw my line. That is where I have to draw my line.

I can only hope that people in jobs that require a certain level of silence keep to their common sense and not lose themselves in the excited moment. I can understand that some things, you just want to share with people because, there is no doubt about it, the coolest thing you have seen in your life. But everything has its consequences, and if you can’t hold on to what you’re responsible for, then those consequences just might cost you your career, or worse.

After all, how can you trust someone to be the best they can at a important job when they would be willing to betray your confidence on a whim?

I certainly won’t and neither would anyone else.

7 thoughts on “Where Do You Draw The Line On What You Should Blog About?

  1. I have seen pics of C sections and stuff but they were in pregnancy-related books and naturally, with the patient’s consent. If consent was not given, publishing details and info is against ethics among other things and frankly, it’s disgusting to hear of it.

  2. That is why I don’t blog about the kind of turtle projects that we do these days. I will still write about turtles because there are so many (other) things about turtles that I can write about. Like you, if I want, I can still give an “elevator-talk” on my blog, but definitely not more than you should know 😀

  3. Mei: It’s understandable, it’s meant to be educational and there are consent legalities to go through for those sort of things. But when you mix the personal and the professional, that’s when things go wrong. Some things are meant to be kept private.

    Pelf: Research is one of those areas where secrecy becomes part of us. We are committed to it because it is the right thing to do. Doesn’t mean the facts can’t be shared. Spread what you know. The rest is between you and that thesis. 🙂

  4. I draw the line when it affects the business of the company.

    For me, whatever that happens inside the company such as jokes between colleagues, rants, etc are all perfectly acceptable on a PERSONAL blog. It is after all, something personal. The moment it affects the company though, I do not post it unless it’s requested by the client.

    The main reason for this is because I don’t want to be dooced. Whoever writes about their clients in their blog without their clients’ consent deserved to be both sued AND fired from their jobs. Just because it’s virtual doesn’t mean the laws are suspended. But then again I suppose a lot of people suspend their brains when in cyberspace.

  5. Naoko: People tend to believe that because they are behind a screen, they remain anonymous. Unfortunately when pictures and words tend to portray and event by the person, anonymity is rescinded. People take for granted that on the net, there are no secrets.

  6. I would draw the line at material that doesn’t fit into the blog’s category. Also, the content shouldn’t bring about problems based on its content. This would mean that certain items inciting negative action can be inappropriate.

  7. Armen Shirvanian: That’s kinda vague considering that personal and commentary blogs tend to have a very wide range of subjects. And negative action is subjective too, controversial blogs tend to incite negative responses though bringing a positive matter to the subject. That’s something to consider.

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