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Blogs causing trouble: survey finds 36% of bloggers have gotten into trouble over their blogs

Blogs causing trouble: survey finds 36% of bloggers have gotten into trouble over their blogs

Fernanda Viégas from the MIT Media Lab has released the results of a new survey on blogging aptly titled “Blog Survey:
Expectations of Privacy and Accountability”
which has found that 36% of respondents have gotten in trouble, 34% know other bloggers who have gotten in trouble with family and friends and 12% of respondents know other bloggers who have gotten in legal or professional problems because of things they wrote on their blogs.

Other findings of interest include
– 83% of respondents characterising their entries as personal ramblings whereas 20% said they mostly publish lists of useful/interesting links, which is suggested is an indication that the nature of blogs might be changing from being mostly lists of links to becoming sites that contain more personal stories and commentaries.
-when blogging about people they know personally: 66% of respondents almost never asked permission to do so; whereas, only 9% said they never blogged about people they knew personally
and probably of greater interest given recent news of Blogs and libel, despite believing that they are liable for what they publish online (58% of respondents believed they were highly liable), in general, bloggers do not believe people could sue them for what they have written on their blogs.

The survey proposes that blogging is a world in flux where social norms are starting to flourish. Examples given are many bloggers revealing the names of companies and products when they blog about them, except when they write about a company for which they currently work or have worked in the past.

Further commentary states that bloggers still feel like they do not know their audience, that they have no control over who reads their postings, which is probably stating the obvious.

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For the full survey results visit the MIT Media Lab site.

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