UPDATE:Tim O’Reilly’s Code of Conduct – Nice Try, Wrong Direction

Tim O’Reilly presented a nice concept – blogging code of conduct . This voluntary code suppose to make blogs more civilized environment, help us all to keep our dignity while blogging, and end world hunger problems. It was also picked up by NY Times.

I feel strongly about making blogs a more accessible medium for people outside the social media walls. I promote it both online and offline. But what O’reilley wrote really doesn’t help. It misses the point in my opinion.

You see, Tim is trying to make us all very nice and coasy with each other, open to others, and generally nice people. I don’t have a problem with that. But I opened a blog to write whatever I want. That’s the whole point of having a blog – publish my thoughts and ideas, without any censorship. If I have something smart to say -readers will come. if not – they won’t. Simple. Easy.

Kathy Sierra’s story is sad, and makes me angry every time I read it. But it is not different from other cases, where media celebrities were threatened and even murdered due to racist, sexual or pure hate reasons. Hey, Howard Stern made his career from saying unconventional things on air!

The same goes for publishing what Tim define as inappropriate content:

“…We define unacceptable content as anything included or linked to that:

- is being used to abuse, harass, stalk, or threaten others
– is libelous, knowingly false, ad-hominem, or misrepresents another person,
– infringes upon a copyright or trademark
– violates an obligation of confidentiality
– violates the privacy of others …”

All these points are important but are handled by the legal system of each country. If you are offended by a post, you can always react, either online or offline. Why is there a need for such a code?

Let’s try to solve the real problems bloggers have – gaining respectability from the regular newspapers readers, explaining the medium to people not involved in it, and gt more readers involved in this new type of media. We can be nicer to each other later….

Update (11th of April): Jeff Jarvis wrote a great post about the subject here. You can also find Andy’s opinion (from VoIP Watch) on the topic. Didn’t see too many positive reactions till now…

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1 Response to “UPDATE:Tim O’Reilly’s Code of Conduct – Nice Try, Wrong Direction”


  1. 1 Proud to be Anonymous April 24, 2007 at 12:07 am

    The O’Reilly Saga continues in his comments section. O’Reilly says he knows the person who attacked against Kathy Sierra. He gets the victim and the perpetrator together on CNN – then somebody pumps up the NY Times publicity machinery for both the victim and the perpetrator. It doesn’t take a genius to see who may be benefiting from this little fracas.

    Then O’Reilly starts blaming a random responder as being one of the attackers.
    And when bloggers respond, most of the track backs lead to O’Reilly’s Radar Website – and (duh – as an Internet expert!) he is unaware that there are persistent error messages generated in his responders’ posts, so that it becomes a hit and miss game whether the post actually gets published or not.

    Perhaps Tim’s involvement relates to this little gem.

    Sierra’s current gig, along with her partner Bert Bates, is developing and producing the bizarre new Head First series of books for O’Reilly.


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