This morning, Sunday, November 4. 2007, CNN’s Reliable Sources is having a discussion on blogging. You and I have been grappling with the issues of blogging and journalism for months. The professional journalists on CNN all write blogs. It seems the major news outlets are beginning to embrace the world of blogging. What are they going to do – ignore a worldwide phenomenon?
I have written about the sarcasm, wit, cleverness, and satire of the blogging universe. (I can’t get used to blogosphere.) I have even posited that there is an undercurrent of anger bubbling to the surface. Each of the journalists on CNN admit that when they are blogging they feel a greater sense of freedom; their writing is more relaxed. But there are boundaries.
The boundaries are old and proven. Use complete sentences. Organize the thoughts. Make a point and defend it. Name calling is not useful. The use of slang degrades the post for the same reasons that slang degrades any essay – slang has different meanings to different people – thus slang has no value in accurate communications. Be clear when presenting an opinion versus reporting facts.
Don’t worry about the editorial board nixing your idea – there is no editorial board. This liberty of writing a blog must be respected. There is no check on rationale. Many bloggers get into trouble because their judgment wanes for a moment and they post something they wish they could have back; I know this from personal experience.
Many folks have taken up the proverbial pen to express themselves in the new cyber world. I travel around and visit other sites. Some are not very well written. Some even butcher the grace of our language. Poor writing can really turn the reader away. I visited a site the other day and found a profound message of life’s struggle presented in broken grammar. I forged ahead into the post and found extraordinary human compassion and powerful expression of emotion.
Grammar is important; but I submit that honesty of self is more powerful. If the two are married in a citadel of humanity – the results can be astounding.
See Also: On Writing, Blogging, Journalism