Friday, January 06, 2006

Washington Times' employee blogging policy

Romenesko has posted the text of a memo from editor-in-chief of The Washington Times, Wesley Pruden, who describes the conditions and reasons behind the paper's policy on employee blogs.

The policy requires that employees who wish to blog first receive permission to do so from senior editors. It is anticipated that most requests will be granted, provided a few conditions are adhered to:

* Time spent researching potential blog topics and the writing of the entries themselves have to be done on the employees' own time.

* The topics written about cannot discuss issues pertinent to a respective journalist's regular beat. Doing so could open the journalist to accusations of perceived bias and worst case scenario, could be used in any libel lawsuit brought against the paper.

* Employees cannot blog about the paper itself.

I have to say I find the policy to be a fair one. I made a decision when I started this blog that the one topic that would absolutely be off limits is my job and my employer. I firmly believe that the work I do and the situations I deal with at the office are meant to be kept separate from the thoughts I express in my posts. I realize there is a lot of debate on this topic, but my position stands.


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