Wow… Ethics. This has seemed to be a hot button issue lately, so it’s good to get to talk about it today!
However, ethical blogging is simple: don’t cheat.
Granted, we all probably think of cheating as not copying someone’s test or fudging the facts to make things our way. And yes, you are right in this matter. However, with blogging, it kind of goes slightly deeper. There are SO many blogs out there and we all read them, so it’s pretty easy to copy someone else’s words. It’s also tempting to do this, especially when you can’t think of what to say. But here’s my thought on it: if you can’t think of what to say, don’t say anything. It’s so much easier to shut off your computer, walk away, write it out, whatever you need to do to think of what to say than copy someone else’s hard work and deal with the repercussions.
Now, but what about those times when you DO copy someone’s work? What if they say something SO GOOD that you cannot say it better and need those words to express yourself? Easy. GIVE THEM CREDIT! It’s not hard to add a little line “Jane says…” or (Jane @ Don’t steal my words blog) giving the original author credit. Or, better yet, ask that person if possible. Chances are, they may be flattered. Regardless, GIVE THEM CREDIT!
Blogging is meant to be a fun pastime, but often it can lead to more professional aspirations. I don’t mean professional in that we get paid to do it, but many of us take it seriously and treat it as we do our real professions. And while blogging isn’t super structured and is meant to let your creative flag fly, the minute we let it become unethical is the minute we lose credibility. Authors, publishers, agents, etc. have begun to rely heavily on bloggers and, in return, we give them honest, ethical reviews to help promote books. I’m still new to the game, but I imagine this is a new relationship that has only recently become strong. However, I imagine it’s a rather thin line we walk and I hope we, as bloggers, continue to strengthen our bond with the publishing world by continuing to remain ethical and NOT cheat!
Honestly, I steer away from non-fiction. Not my favorite thing to read, although I sometimes wish I liked it more.
That being said, I do LOVE a good biography/memoir written by funny women. Not necessarily famous women; just women with a unique story who tell it in an endearing and fun way. I’ve only read a couple, but they have been oh so cute and good! I’m always keeping an eye out for new ones, so if you know of any, suggest away!