Steps to protect yourself from legal troubles when posting on blogs

Written By Steps To Faculty Published September 30th, 2010

Blogs are a great way to communicate to the world your thoughts, feelings, and ideas. Blogs are commonly used when you are starting your own business to get feedback from customers about the quality of your goods and services. You can even use blogs to find out what your customers would like from you or your firm. However, there are certain steps you must take when starting your own business to ensure that you keep yourself and your business lawsuit-free.

Step 1 Check the facts

Before posting any blog or even before writing content for a blog check your facts. If you know you will have to use either a quote or some information that is not common knowledge, then be sure to check the facts so that you accurately represent the information that you are writing about. For example, if you are positing a blog about a celebrity and their activities at a party, be sure that you are certain of what you are saying. Check it out. When in doubt, do a reference check and include references to information that is uncommon or has been paraphrased. It is better to give credit when it is due than to even try to restate someone’s work and claim it as your own.

Step 2 Make no assumptions

Don’t assume anything on any topic when you are writing a blog. For example, don’t assume that attorneys make over $100,000 per year. In fact, some attorneys in the public sector make under $40,000 per year. If you were writing a blog about the salary of attorneys, many would find you and your blog not credible. As mentioned, check the facts. In the event of the salary of attorneys give a range of probable salaries such as $0 – $1,000,000. $0 represents pro bono cases and $1,000,000 represents high profile cases and big city corporate attorneys.

Step 3 Think of everyone

When you are writing about a topic for a blog post, don’t just consider who will read it. Think of all peoples. Think of race, religion, gender, class, the disabled, and orientation. Anyone has access to your blog online, so anyone can read it. You never know who will and the last thing you want to do is offend anyone. Just by offending even one person can set off a legal chain reaction that can lead to a class action suit if you are not careful. Remember, when you post a blog, your ip address is recorded so that people know who you are when you post a blog.

Step 4 Review

Before posting your blog, review it and see if this is something you would want the world to know that you wrote. Think about the content and what you are trying to say. What would the average person think when they read it? Does the writing give you a good name or will it draw negative criticism. In these litigious times you cannot afford to be sloppy. Caution is the way of the future, especially online.

Step 5 Avoid negative words

Use neutral words and avoid vulgarity, dirty jokes, and profanity. Unless you have something positive to say about someone, you probably should refrain from posting something about a person. Remember, once you put it out there, it is considered written evidence and can be used inside a court room as evidence.

Blogs are a great communication tool, but follow these steps to be lawsuit free. Please visit stepsto.com for more great business advice.


Roger Due

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