As I said in the previous post, I have a personal standard for what goes on display around here but I’m not sold on the concept of a “bloggers’ code” as proposed by some high profile bloggers.

Some others have no doubts: they pretty much hate the idea.

Like James Farmer.

Outside of here, as a blogger or as someone simply exercising my right to free speech, what I don’t require is a set of rules to justify what I do, and what I certainly don’t need is anyone else waggling said code in my face.

Or Stephen Downes.

Good behaviour isn’t defined by rules, it is limited by them. Or as I commented on Clarence Fisher’s blog, if you behave decently, you will already follow something like a code of conduct (but intelligently, adapting to complex circumstances), and the code won’t change your behaviour. If you don’t behave decently, then the code of conduct isn’t going to stop you, and rather just gives you ‘the letter of the law’ as a technicality to duck behind if someone calls you on it (“well, it wasn’t in the code, so I assumed it was OK…”). Good conduct has always been a matter of education, a matter of character, not a matter of legislation.

And Jeff Jarvis, who’s long, rambling post on the topic defies summarizing with a single pull quote but is worth a quick reading.

It’s all interesting but just one more sign that there’s not likely to be any kind of consensus on this matter in my lifetime.

So, I’ll just continue to follow the discussion and stick with my personal code. And only associate, virtually and other ways, with people who follow a reasonable approximation of the same.

In the process I’ll probably still run across some nasty comments, stupid remarks, and opinions I disagree with.

Just like living in the real world.

bloggers code, civility