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Sunday, May 07, 2006

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Lisa

Wasn't Michelle Malkin the one who, during the Presidential campaign, claimed that John Kerry shot himself on purpose to get a Purple Heart? I seem to remember her getting chewed up and spit out by Chris Matthews of CNN for that one.

The whole purpose of her professional existence seems to be to stir up hostility and aggression. So I am not at all surprised that the hostility and aggression eventually came back to her own front door. I'm disappointed that people would stoop to her ridiculously low level. Also surprised that the police were not involved sooner when people started receiving death threats.

liz

Yes, Malkin alleged it was a self-inflicted wound; the Matthews Interview is here

Malkin lives and breathes controversy, sometimes manufactured. I do not care for her approach (or another right-wing woman, Ann Coulter: inflammatory quotes list and Wikipedia entry. ) But Coulter doesn't blog.

fp

Regarding blog civility, I think you were brought up to behave appropriately and so respect for others, their privacy, their perspectives, is second nature to you. I've been through the online anonymity concerns and made the personal decision to live openly rather than anonymously, since my views are somewhat contrarian and I think they would lose impact if I didn't stand behind them four-square. Still, I have a friend who "went anonymous" after some time blogging and I've always respected his decision. He has a corporate job, a young family with daughters, and he's a contrarian like me. I respect the Happy Tutor's not too perfect anonymity because his satire is risqué and open to mainstream criticism and he lives in the corporate world too. I don't think it hurts to codify and publish rules for interacting, personal credos, and whatnot, because it models good behavior for those who might not know what's expected of them.

All that said, people like Malkin and Coulter and I'm sure I could find examples on the left have empowered themselves to behave atrociously and no simple code of ethics will influence them toward moderate behavior.

I think that remaining concerned for others' feelings, seeking a middle path for conversation has a better chance of influencing change for the better than posturing and pontificating from an isolated perch we delude ourselves into thinking is a moral highground. Malkin is the proof of that.

All that said, I would not sign on to these principles for the reason that I would not swear an oath in court. Rather I would affirm that I generally agree and that my behavior will be the proof of that agreement. (Or, on a bad day, the disproof).

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