The nuances of editing a blog

In Uncategorized on December 30, 2007 at 12:52 am

There’s a large discussion going out there on exactly how much writers should edit their blogs, if at all. There’s also a marked difference between a personal blog and a journalistic or opinion blog meant to be read by more than just the author and her/his friends.

At a speaking engagement Lucas Grindley had in one of my Jclasses, he brought up the point that blogs shouldn’t be edited, and (this is especially important) old posts should never be deleted. It’s all part of having an open and lively discussion, even if we make mistakes.

This was a foreign concept to me. I was under the impression that as editors of our own work, we should edit and correct the wrong information we put out there. I’m used to reading personal blogs full of bitching and moaning, where the authors delete posts at will and block people from accessing their blogs because of flared tempers and immaturity. Then, I realized that I’m a journalist-blogger. I have a set of ethics to live by (and, to create in this new medium).

Here is how I edit:

1. I never delete a post, even if I think it is horrible, it puts out an opinion that I have second thoughts about sharing or it receives less than positive attention.

2. Because I want to see the finished product as it’s being published, I post a blog before I make my final edits. Then, I go through with a fine-toothed comb and clean up the grammar, spelling, HTML, etc.

3. Any mistakes left after 24 hours will remain on the blog forever.

4. Any mistakes I or someone else catches are fixed using strike-throughs. I also use strike-throughs when I want to be a sarcastic smart-ass, because I have become somewhat versed in the world of Teh Interweb.

5. I give link-credit where link-credit is due, and I will strive to be better about link-crediting photos I use that aren’t mine (this is something I have been neglecting).

6. I don’t screen comments. I post everything; I’m not sure how my comments’ spam filters work, so if someone has a hard time posting comments, I’m sorry. It’s not me.

I’m pretty new to this whole thing, but I think it’s exciting.

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