Friday, February 10, 2006

Prohibition

4 days with no posting! oh my god!

Anyway... I was thinking the other day about my prohibition on blogging about work and I'm not changing my mind on this policy, it's a good policy. The latest hill "scandal" involving a staffer with a blog on the now controversial MySpace got me thinking about it. I started to think about what's the difference between me sending an email, instant message, calling someone or even telling someone in person what happened at work on any given day and blogging about it. The only real difference is this: it's saved online. I admit that putting something online about the negatives of a job, or the people you work with is embarrassing for them and for the company and more to the point, it's rude. But what recourse does a business really have? I know they have the power of the paycheck so to speak, but do they have the right to use it? Can a business fire you for saying something negative to another person? The conversation is, assumedly, done on your own time with your own resources.

And what about the "scandals" that have hit the hill in recent years? I put scandal in quotes because I don't think either of them was all that important when compared with actual scandals. Neither of these women discussed their jobs, neither of them said anything bad about their co-workers and while one of them did use a hill computer, the other didn't. Yet both were reprimanded (one was fired) and both received an overabundance of press (and a book deal). So then, what's to stop an employer from firing someone for saying or writing anything that they disagree with? Apparently nothing.

I think this stems from peoples misunderstanding, or at the very least a lack of information, on what blogs are. TV news is filled with how horrible MySpace is and how it will steal your children, Blogs are criticized in the "mainstream media" on a daily basis and parents are scrambling to catch up with technology so they can investigate whether their children are suicidal or not. Does this seem a little ridiculous to anyone else? First, MySpace is a tool, much like the benevolent titled site friendster. It will not perform evil tasks and the only danger in it is the same that goes for everything online, i.e. moderate the information you give out. Second, Blogs were not edited for a couple of years so the information wasn't necessarily truthful. Many of the "mainstream" blogs are now held accountable for the news they produce. Who are they held accountable by? The readers. The other blogs that aren't considered news outlets should be viewed as just that... non-news blogs. Lastly, parents should stop fretting so much about technology and playing detective on their children’s computers, and start parenting (which I will admit involves playing detective sometimes). If a kid writes about how he/she wants to hurt themselves online and you're not seeing signs of depression in their REAL LIFE BODY standing in front of you, then you don't need to take an IT course you need something completely different.

So let us review: Internet = not evil, Technology = not evil, MySpace = not going to abduct your children, Blog Scandals = aren't there better things to be reporting?

1 Comments:

Anonymous Mongo said...

I read this blog entry and I was scared. All it says is "I, Jeff Dickson, worship the internet and want to steal your babies. Hail to thee, Satan!" Honestly, if you want to keep spreading your evil gospel then I might be forced to actually make an effort to not read it.....wait, I have a choice............wow, I am no longer under the spell of the Conservative Right! Thank you, Jeff. You are a hero to many, maybe even a God to some. Now let's go key O'Reilly's car!

10:58 AM, February 11, 2006  

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