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The Blogger Code of Ethics

It seems to me that I’ve never seen a code of ethics for bloggers. Have you?

I figured I’d write one. The interesting thing about this code is that it isn’t just an ethical code. It happens to be a success code. If one applies this code at all times, their chances of success increase. Success gravitates to ethical people, for the most part.

It also happens that this code would be true for pretty much anybody in business. But, since I’m a blogger, I like to talk about that. Naturally. :)

So, here it is:

  1. Be thankful.
  2. Be and act kind.
  3. Be and act generous.
  4. Help people.
  5. Be honest.
  6. Be transparent.
  7. Only sell what is in absolute best interest of the customer.
  8. Don’t require approval or praise.

What do you think?

Let me offer a few comments on this code.

Be thankful. Never take for granted that you have readers or that people pay you money. They made a choice to invest a small part of themselves in you. Thank them for it.

Be and act kind. You like it when people are kind to you, so always be kind back. It comes naturally for most of us. The biggest challenge might be when somebody goes after you in a negative way. When you get snide comments, it might be hard for you not to counter-attack. The quest for rightness is the path to nowhere. In most cases, you’re better off just deleting the email and walking away than to respond in kind. You don’t owe replies to people who don’t deserve one.

Be and act generous. Give more value than you take. Try to help your readers with personal email replies.

Help people. This is the foundation of this entire business. Help people solve problems and they will pay you back in spades.

Be honest. Always always always. Don’t promote something you don’t believe in. Don’t write anything that doesn’t come from a place of honesty.

Be transparent. People like to bond with real people. So, be a real person. Social media is the best tool for transparency. Also, bloggers have often seen how readers respond to posts which are most transparent. This doesn’t mean you have to tell your readers everything (that’d be stupid), but don’t be an impersonal faceless person, either.

Only sell what is in the absolute best interest of the customer. Pretty much a no-brainer.

Don’t require approval or praise. This is a biggie for many bloggers who just have a hard time taking it. Some bloggers have their whole day ruined when somebody decides to unsubscribe, leaves a bad comment, or requests a refund. Why? First of all, this is a people business and not every person is going to click with you. Don’t take it personally. Just realize that that person is not your ideal reader/customer, and part ways. But, under all that, just make it a personal policy that you don’t need approval. It you required approval for everything, you could never rock the boat in any way.

Do You Agree With This Code?

If you do, then spread the word by retweeting this post and sharing it with your friends.

More importantly, follow it.

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