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February 25, 2004
To Talk of Many Things

Well, I'm back but I've lost the top of my desk. While I search for it, I scanned a few headlines, but the thoughts I had might not have been those expected.

Is blogging when what you're paid to do is to write about the news a sort of intellectual theft? (And that might apply to people who blog when what they're being paid to do is some other kind of work.)

Does inventing weasel-worded euphemisms remove the stain of reality, as those prone to creating such phrases seem to think?

Does anyone doubt that the structure affects the results of an investigation?

Does anyone doubt that gay marriage is going to be legalized?

If you were facing a river of red ink and found a source of revenue, would you turn over the money to people who didn't really need it instead of paying the bills you'd run up?

If mass murder is happening in a country where we don't have oil interests, does the press really care? Doesn't look like it.

Speaking of caring, I don't much today. I seem to have returned from my little vacation without the compulsion to blog endlessly. (Or maybe it's that the headlines haven't changed substantially since I left town?)

Fortunately the rest of blogdom isn't suffering from the same malaise. I'm going to go get caught up on what people have been finding important.

Posted by AnneZook at 09:52 AM


I don't think blogging at work, even if your blog and your work encompass the same interests, constitutes intellectual theft so much as time theft. But considering the boredom quotient and hurry-up-and-wait nature of many jobs, not to mention unpaid overtime and such, many employees feel as justified in "stealing back time" as they do in "stealing" the odd personal photocopy or three.

Posted by: Elayne Riggs at February 25, 2004 03:28 PM

Well, it's really two problems.

What about blogger/journalists? Are they using energy thaqt rightly belongs to their employers?

As for the rest of us...well, we know there are significant intervals during any day when we're "on hold" waiting for other people to do their thing, but there's no question that management expects us to find some kind of productive task, no matter how minor, to fill those hours for which they are paying.

Posted by: Anne at February 26, 2004 08:45 AM

There's a whole host of liability issues in personal weblogs that news media have to address first because of the public and supposedly neutral position of journalism.

But at some point other employers are going to take note that their serfs are talking to each other, that internal corporate issues are getting a wider airing (and that reading their competitors'/suppliers'/customers' employees' blogs might be a good idea) and that blogging is a part of the wider culture which can influence things like the perception of a "hostile work environment" or HR fairness.

Then we're going to have free speech issues coming out our USB ports.....

Posted by: Jonathan Dresner at February 26, 2004 04:21 PM

By the way: we DO have oil interests in the Sudan. But getting involved would mean taking sides against the people whose friends happen to own most of our other oil interests.

Posted by: Jonathan Dresner at February 26, 2004 04:23 PM