What I’m about to say is not earth shattering. It’s common sense. However, despite it being common sense, you’d be surprised how many people don’t seem to understand this concept.
In today’s blogging world, as in the journalism world, everyone wants the early story; the scoop; the information that makes you the source and causes everyone to bow at your feet in humility. Trust me. Everyone wants this. Sometimes, if you play your cards right and happen to know the right people or be at the right place at the right time, you might just get access to information that is not common knowledge. Some of this information would make a heck of a blog entry. It would mean lots of traffic and you would surely end up on Techmeme or on Digg.
Stop. Just stop.
Think. Ask yourself these questions:
- Will blogging this story cause me to lose friends or relationships?
- Will blogging the story cause me to break an embargo I agreed to? (Embargos sent without prior agreement are fair game, in my opinion)
- Will blogging the story violate an NDA?
- Will blogging the story cause other people not to share information with me?
Like I said – common sense. Personally, I’ve been given intimate knowledge of LOTS of things. Google related things. Early previews of alpha products in stealth. Insider knowledge of how organizational health of some companies. Indications of where key players may end up and who’s talking to who. What employee at a tech company is sleeping with the CEO. Yes, I have access. No I am not blogging any of this stuff. Why? Because… it will hurt my chances of getting other access or it may cause me personal relationships with folks.
Oh, and don’t share private conversations without permission.
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a big fan of football. You also might remember when I blogged over at Squib Kick before the current author, Jim Edwards, began. Since Jim started, the blog has become one of my favorites sports blogs anywhere. Recently Jim encountered some health issues that have forced him to do less blogging and as a result, several folks have been guest blogging over there.
Today, I began a weekly segment I’ll be doing for a bit until Jim gets back. Specifically, it’s for those of you who do fantasy football. Go check it out.
I was looking around on IMDB this morning when I came across this atrocity. Apparently, they are making a movie set to be released in 2009 based on G.I. Joe – yes, the toys, cartoons and comic books that every boy growing up in the 80s remembers fondly.
I was excited that they were making a G.I. Joe movie. After all, Transformers rocked. Then I saw the movie description:
A European-based military unit known as Global Integrated Joint Operating Entity (G.I.J.O.E.), a hi-tech, international force of special operatives takes on an evil organization led by a notorious arms dealer.
What the hell?! G. I. Joe was a real American hero, not some European, internationalized commando group. Give me a break. I guess a “Real American Hero” doesn’t play well in a world that despises America and relies on the United Nations to make all decisions best left to the sovereignty of nations.
As my friend Keith noted, “GI Joe is being EU/UN-ified? Can’t wait until they’re brought to the Hague for being mean to Cobra Commander.”
Insanity. Don’t mess with my heritage, please.