Should bloggers have a code of conduct? Would you appreciate it if a blog had one?
Of course, this is not a new subject and it’s certainly one that divides opinions, particularly in the context of the many political blogs out there, which are written by activists, journalists and politicians alike – and which often attract very virulent and partisan commenters (to say the very least).
The idea of a code of conduct is certainly something that interests me, despite the fact that Another Kind Of Mind is different in that it is not solely a political blog (although there’s certainly a lot of politics to be found here). I have, however, long had quite a few informal but important rules I follow when blogging, whether I’m writing about politics or not (see below).
“First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me–
and there was no one left to speak out for me” – Martin Niemoller.
Martin Niemoller was a controversial figure, whose motives and actions are still debated by historians, theologians and political theorists to this day. But his words (above) ring as true today as they did in the 1940s. Like many Lutheran pastors (and other religious leaders) in 1930s Germany, Niemoller was an anti-communist who opposed the democratic experiment of the Weimar Republic and its associated ‘decadence’, welcoming the Nazi accession to power in 1933 even to the extent of apparently having official meetings with Adolf Hitler.