Blog policy

by Rusty Tanton, June 2, 2008 - 8:56am

We've been meaning to put together a blogging section in the FAQ with a few ground rules and guidelines, but haven't quite gotten around to it yet. It was brought to our attention late last week that we need to get on this.

Someone found our site through a search engine, signed up for an account, and immediately posted a press release as a blog post last week.

That seems like spammy behavior, right? Well, not so fast. People have been allowed to post press releases as blog posts in the past, including releases for events with no affiliation to this site. The event in question was in Atlanta and it was technology-related, so it's not like it was totally off-topic. It wasn't an ad for Viagra or an online casino.

We occasionally have press releases for our own events that we will post here, and so we aren't going to ban press releases outright. On the other hand, we are not going to allow the blog to become a dumping ground for press releases for every event under the sun. Check out the Atlanta Daybook for that.

So we need to set up some prerequisites. My thought is that someone will need to have contributed to or participated in the site in a sincere way before being allowed to post a press release or other event announcement.

What is sincere probably sounds kind of arbitrary, so I'd really like to hear from you on this.

I don't think that signing up for an account, writing "nice podcast" in a comment, and then dumping a press release is going to count. I'm thinking you need to have contributed an episode to a podcast, host your own podcast here, be an affiliate, or be a frequent commenter. That, or the event should be related to Georgia and podcasting, which probably won't be the case too often.


Tags: blog policy, Press Releases, rules

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Amber Rhea's picture
Amber Rhea

They didn't even bother to write "nice podcast!"

This is another example of PR people not getting it... but maybe eventually they will.

Posted on June 2, 2008 - 9:06am

Thomas's picture

Perhaps if you established some reasonable (but fairly rigid) rules. MetaFilter has a decent policy where such things are concerned, as they used to always have to deal with fly-by press releasers. Their FAQ doesn't list specifics about how many comments are required or how long one must be a member, only this: "You need to be a member for a short amount of time and you need to make a few comments to the site before you can make a front page post."

And really, you needn't list your specific requirements. Even if the required length of time is four days and the number of comments is five, "short amount" and "few" covers it. Also, you can avoid those inevitable complaints like "Hey, I've been here long enough and made enough comments to you have to let me post!"

Posted on June 2, 2008 - 10:41am