Saturday, September 26, 2009

Blogtiquette. Get It Right.

I posted 'Truly Amazing Race' on 15 Jul 09.

It was about my thoughts shortly after learning that Dr William Tan was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. Dr. Tan is someone who has given me a lot of motivation and inspiration. Being wheelchair-bound, he has shown many able-bodies that handicap is a matter of the mind and not of the body.

I am more than happy to share my article with anyone within the cyberspace. Stories of beautiful people often remind us that we are more blessed than we think we are.
However, I was annoyed when my article was found duplicated in another blog.

The copied article is largely the same except for some substituted words. The choice of replacement words somehow made the copied article odd. I am puzzled as to why the 'writer' bothered to even do that.

The oddities begin right at the start of the article.

In the original writing, I began with:

"If you have not already known this person, you would at the end of this article."

This was replaced by:
"If you be imbued not already known this in the flesh, you would at the close of this article."

Somewhere in the article, I wrote,
"It was not until he was ten that he was given an old pair of crutches...As a kid, he was laughed at and that was to be the reason why he was expelled from Kindergarten while attempting to defend himself."

The 'writer' chose to say it this way:

"It was not until he was ten that he was arranged an old-time combine of crutches. As a kid, he was laughed at and that was to be the rationale why he was expelled from Kindergarten while attempting to parry himself."

I wrapped up my article by saying:
"Besides his impressive sports records, Dr Tan is also no stranger to many charitable organizations. He has done a great deal for various charities, raised millions of dollars here and abroad. Watch this video which shows some of the events in his life."

The 'writer' turned it into:

"Besides his exciting sports records, Dr Tan is also no company to diverse unsparing organizations. He has done a egregious arrangement in buttress of divers charities, raised millions of dollars here and about. Watch this video which shows some of the events in his flair."


I have no idea why the 'writer' had to translate my article from English to 'Odd English'. It is totally bizarre. I tried to contact the 'writer' but the site is largely in French and I could not make much headway.

It is perfectly fine with me if there is anyone out there who wish to re-post my article. However, I do expect the most basic netiquette to be observed: You will give due credit to the originator of the article.

Most bloggers are aware of the basic golden rules in the blogosphere. For completeness, here are some useful ones for those who wish to do a recap.

Rule #1. Everyone is Reading

You are in a public domain and your readers include everyone and anyone in the cyberspace. Posted articles are like spoken words, you cannot ever take them back again. You will be silly to post something which will get you fired.

Rule #2. The Record is Permanent

A young blogger may say something he would regret when he is older. Unfortunately, such records can become permanent. Before he can erase the marks, someone may have already re-posted it somewhere in the cyberspace. Potential employers who have taken note of some unintentional puerile comments may dismiss him as a suitable candidate for a a job. Whatever you choose to publish, be mindful of possible consequences.

Rule #3. Give Credit

If you are citing studies or researches, let others know where you get your facts from. If you see something you like and want to recreate it in your blog, do not 'blogjack'. You would need to give due credit to the original writer. Sometimes, you may even need to get prior consent. Being honest and trustworthy is always desirable.

Rule #4. Shhh...Do Not Shout

Do not write in ALL CAPS. NO ONE WANTS TO HEAR YOU SHOUT! Neither should you write everything in small caps or mixed-caps. Be nice to your readers, do punctuate and go easy on long paragraphs.

Rule #5. Be Civilized

Although the blogosphere is a free space, we ought to be responsible for our words and actions. Feel free to disagree and leave comments but leaving a negative comment anonymously is a cowardly act. When you receive a comment, do reply appropriately. Flaming and mounting personal attacks are unacceptable behaviors.

The above 5 rules are not exhaustive. Essentially, basic mannerism inside and outside the cyberspace remains the same. Everyone wants to be treated with due respect. Period.

Remember, writing in a blog is like walking down a busy street. Everyone is 'watching' you and you should get your Blogtiquette right.

Lastly, if there is anyone who can make some sense out of this bizarre copycat act, please enlighten me. It would even be better if you can figure out the contact info of the blog owner. (knowing some French would be helpful)

"I stay true to myself and my style,
and I am always pushing myself
to be aware of that and be original."


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this!