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Blogger Ethical Code and Toni Morrison’s Trustworthiness


Journalists have ethical codes and so do librarians and lawyers. (Librarians also have a intellectual freedom codes, which might answer some of your question about why we can be so pigheaded).

Do Bloggers Share an Ethical Code?, posted at attorney Donald Vanarelli’s blog, is worth reading:

Excerpt: “According to a recent study published in the June 2009 edition of the New Media & Society journal entitled doing-the-right-thing-online-a-survey-of-bloggers-beliefs-and-practices, bloggers share a group of ethical principals. This first large-scale survey of blogging ethics identified four underlying ethical principles important to bloggers: truth telling, accountability, minimizing harm and attribution...” (link to full post)

I also like his Blogging Goals post and may adopt the practice, though he seems much more focused and organized than I am about blogging. It will remind me that bloggers are, or should be, immune to people who sniff at bloggers, as if we are less than “real” writers. Most of us within our blogging ranks do strive for professionalism and trustworthiness, which reminds me of the following ….:

I have found myself talking about this Toni Morrison/Trustworthiness interview to several people. It left a deep impression on me, her wisdom and forcefulness – and the rightness of rating trustworthiness so highly.

Excerpt: “… Q: Do you ever think about your legacy? I should, because I had an awkward moment some years ago when I was in England for a reading. The [moderator] onstage asked me how I would like to be remembered, and I said as trustworthy, as embracing, as someone in whose company you always felt a little bit better. And some black girls [in the balcony] said, “What are you talking about? You mean you have won the Nobel Prize and all you want to be is trustworthy?” They were furious.

Q: What was your reaction? I was so taken aback. And I said I wasn’t thinking about them or the world. I was thinking about my children, my sister, my mother, my father. I wanted to be remembered as somebody they could trust. But those girls wanted me to be remembered as “the first black person, the first female…”

Q: Well, I suppose there’s something in between, yes? There’s nothing in between.”

(Link to full story and interview at AARP site (“Newsmaker: Toni Morrison,” by Marilyn Milloy, January & February 2009 AARP Magazine: “The Nobel laureate imagines a world where race doesn’t matter”)

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