|courtesy of lawsuitloansblog.com|
There are a lot of posts out there that explain to newbies, like me, the benefits and the How-To’s of blogging. When I first began, I read a post by Christine at Bun & Burrow and found it very helpful. She gives us tips from utilizing social media and photos to using proper grammar. She shares with us the simple reminder that we should be ourselves in our posts, just as we are in real-life. However, I think it is just as important to be reminded of the the dangers of blogging.
While anyone can be an iReporter or blogger now – it is very easy to forget the cardinal rules of copyright infringement. You think, “Oh, it’s just the Internet so anything goes” but in fact, you can get sued for something as small as using a photo without permission or taking someone else’s story and claiming it as your own. As a Journalism major, I remember studying this issue and being warned that the Internet was unlike any other form of media or data source. And that was several years ago. It has evolved a lot since then. Growing up, we all had to write research papers and provide a Works Cited to showcase our sources. Blogging really is the same way. Just like that research paper, if you find something you like, you must paraphrase it and make it your own and credit the original author. No plagiarising. Just like magazine writers and newspaper columnists credit their sources, so must bloggers. Another important issue to remember is to be factual. When it comes to making factual statements, it is important to check the source.
Recently I came across this article What To Do If You Are Sued in Today’s Chicago Woman Magazine for bloggers who might not know what to do if they are sued. It is worth a read. It may save you from filing for bankruptcy.