December 04, 2005
Control of blogging is an issue
From a corporate point of view it is all about trusting your employees and creating (or having them create - even better) corporate blogging/podcasting guidelines. Yes you have to protect confidential information, yes you have to make sure intellectual property is respected but not by cutting the internet connection or issuing them a warning that if they blog they get fired. It simply doesn't work... Chances are that some of them already blog about their work anyway.True, but this question of control cannot be dismissed as irrelevant or reduced to a simple issue of confidentiality. Substantial harm can be done to people and companies by slandering, revealing stuff that should remain private or just not being careful enough with posts which can be misinterpreted. There is definitely a control issue here. I would argue however that this control issue is not about censorship, but really about making sure that:
1- every post can be tracked back to an identified individual and not to an anonymous IP address. Today, I could easily create a blog under a fake name and spread rumors about people or companies I don't like and damage reputations. For sure this is already happening in the blogosphere.
2- access rights can be attributed to each post so that the responsibility of a possible information leakage can be clearly attributed either to the author of the post or to the blogging service provider.
We talked a lot about this when we worked on our KM Charter. It will certainly become key for blogging services in the future to avoid ugly lawsuits.
[Update: Look at Rebecca's latest post. Faking identities is really where the issue lies]
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