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Nov 2, 2009

Blogging policies

A set of policies, presented as checklists or guidelines for employees, explains typical rules for employees who use blogs or other social media:
"The Disclosure Best Practices Toolkit is a draft series of checklists to help companies, their employees, and their agencies learn the appropriate and transparent ways to interact with blogs, bloggers, and the people who interact with them.

We believe in the principles of transparency and openness, and this document is a way of making this real on the inside. Our goal is not to create or propose new industry standards or rules. These checklists are open source training tools designed to help educate the hundreds or thousands of employees in any large corporation the appropriate ways to interact with the social media community."

The authors evidently have a bee in their bonnet about people disclosing any pecuniary interest in the matters on which they are writing. If adapted to become corporate policies, management may wish to be crystal clear about the limits on employees discussing the organization, its products, customers or related matters in any public forum (including all social media), particularly if all such pronouncements should normally be explicitly sanctioned by Public Relations, Law, Marketing or other interested parties.

Note: this may be just as much an issue for employees (or indeed contractors, consultants and others) blogging 'in their own time' as for those blogging at work.