September 8, 2006, Newsletter Issue #31: Privacy concerns and blogs

Tip of the Week

Blogs are by definition public documents. They are hosted on the Internet, which is a public resource. So yes, there are privacy concerns associated with blogs. Before starting a blog, you should ask yourself what your purpose is in doing so. If you hope to build a public following (whether you're seeking adulation or ad revenue), then you need to be mindful of the fact that even if you offer moderated access (i.e., there's a "gatekeeper," usually you, who either permits or denies individual bloggers access to the blog) to your blog, these bloggers are strangers. At a minimum, you should avoid posting information about your physical address and telephone number. Also, keep in mind that your blog could, in theory, be quoted at any time in any forum by anyone reading your blog. While blogs are great outlets for the expression of personal opinion, there's a fine line between libel and slander.

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