If we wanted to use more than 140 characters, we'd be writing more here.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Codes of Conduct? On the WWW??

Driven by concerns about vulgarity, slander, and harrassment, a group of Internet professionals are calling for the adoption of a Bloggers Code of Conduct. I predict this new initiative will last only slightly longer than the Titanic's code of conduct for shipboard evacuations did after striking the iceberg (17 seconds). I suspect that even now people are anonymously questioning the authors' parentage whilst using a variety of colourful terms more commonly found in public WCs, the Royal Marines, and the comments sections of political websites.

Nonetheless, a clear code of conduct is one way in which people can find out a bit about how a blog is run and just how responsible the writer(s) of said blog are (the other way being to count number of f-bombs or references to the "secret CIA plot to bring down the WTC" in the posts.)

As The Dictionary of Unfortunate Ideas is at its heart, lungs, and liver a comedy blog (just in case you haven't figured that out yet), our Code of Conduct is likely to substantially differ from other blogs', particularly the bits about not making things up. So, for the public good, and because I've ran out of ideas for satirising Tube Skiing, here is a proposed draft for a Code of Conduct for this blog. My fellow participants are encouraged to offer their feedback regarding this proposal, if they should happen to post sometime in the next decade or so.

A Proposed Code of Conduct for Bloggers Participating on
The Dictionary of Unfortunate Ideas

Version 1.0

1. The participants will be duly recognized by their pen names, however much those may differ from their actual legal names, personal nicknames used by family and friends, the names they have tattooed on their persons, or any aliases recognised by law enforcement agencies.

2. The participants will address each other in a respectful manner, except for the following exceptions:

a. Disagreements - Because no one should be expected to keep their calm during a good row over the kinds of trivial nonsense found on this blog.
b. Whenever cheap insults present the opportunity for a good laugh, or for that matter even a cheap laugh.
c. Whenever referring to participants who have not blogged within the last 72 hours, the lazy, shiftless, deadbeat skivvers.

3. Participants will strive to verify and maintain the accuracy of the material they are publishing, unless any laughs in the material are dependent upon the inaccuracy of said material. In the case of the latter, participants shall freely make up things about the subjects of the posts, including quotes, personal history, and body odour. (Please see our disclaimer for legal details.)

4. Comments are not allowed on DOUI. Frankly this is because there's nothing worse than a blog where the commenters attempt to "out-funny" the regular posters... except perhaps for a blog where the commenters actually regularly "out-funny" the regular posters. We do not intend to broach either of these possible outcomes, unless there is a great deal of money involved.

5. Any e-mail sent to members of the blog may at any time be published on the blog, accompanied by cheap insults, derogatory comments and made-up information regarding the e-mailer's quotes, personal history, and body odour. (See #3 for details).

6. (With apologies to the members of Monty Python)There is no rule #6!

7. Responsibility for any offensive or derogatory comments featured on this blog shall be the responsibility of society, which has presented us with such easy and obvious targets.


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