UPDATE: Silly me. I should always, always read Hogg's Blog before I jump on here and start writing. I, too, found it amazing that no one had commented on this publication yet -- but Hoggard had, and people had commented, and Ed had explained all. Roch Smith, Jr. has published an article on Greensboro101.com about the copyright issues for bloggers. In the interest of full disclosure, I'm leaving my original post intact.
This is what I thought, before I knew. Now that I know how it went down, that Ed's permission was granted, it's much less of a story. Yet for me, it's still a bit of a cautionary tale. Blogs aren't IMs or chat rooms; what you write on yours or someone else's is published to the world.
In what is an interesting case study for the intersection of print media and blogs, YES! Weekly chose to publish, in full, one of Ed Cone's blog posts and all the comments it provoked, with names.
I was shocked to see this. I don't know if Ed's permission was sought and granted, or if any of the commenters were consulted. Since I am on the outside of this transaction I don't want to get ahead of the facts. Was anyone consulted? Does anyone mind? Is this what the intersection of blogs and print media should be?
More egregious was the reference to Ed's blog as "the city's most notorious." Notorious? As in:
NOTORIOUS (adj.) "widely known, esp. unfavorably"
I don't think this is what Brian meant. But writers and editors should be careful to avoid these kind of word swap traps. They are sloppy, and can lead to genuine miscommunications. Readers who don't know Ed Cone or his blogging history may now have a sense that he is some kind of troublemaker, a gadfly in the ointment -- a characterization which doesn't fit at all.
Do you own your blog? Should someone seek your permission before republication? What about comments? They are infinitely Google-able, but should they be available for anyone to print for a different audience? What if that print material was being sold for profit?
I, for one, would not want to see a comment I had typed into someone's blog appear on the Editorial pages of the News & Record without my knowledge or consent. However, the web is public turf, Google is forever, and I know of no reasonable objection or legal precedent that would protect my web writing from being reproduced in print. Does anyone?
I met Jordan Green, a YES! staff reporter, the other night and he was a very nice guy. I wish YES! Weekly nothing but the best and welcome their appearance in Greensboro, and look forward to learning more about where the Greensboro blog community stands on this type of crossover.