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<h1>Change of Course</h1>
<div>July 16, 2005</div>
<a href="http://www.aaronsw.com/weblog/newethics">Original link</a><hr>
<p>Here on the Interblog, anyone can write whatever they feel like. Unconstrained by standards and practices, bloggers feel free to write anything that&rsquo;s fair and accurate. For the past ten years, I&rsquo;ve played this sorry game &mdash; telling you when I thought my friends books sucked, noting exactly which major media figures offered Schedule III Controlled Substances to teenagers, and speaking frankly about sex. I have finally seen the error of my ways. I plan to become <a href="http://www.thetalentshow.org/archives/001897.html">an online magazine</a>.</p>
<p>No more will I defend saying something simply because it is &ldquo;the truth&rdquo;. No, from now on, I am adopting the rigorous standards of professional journalists. I&rsquo;ve been convinced that telling people the truth will just hurt them and, frankly, I&rsquo;m a little tired of being mocked and shunned for my honesty, which goes completely unappreciated by you people.</p>
<p>So, here&rsquo;s the new regime.</p>
<ol>
<li>
<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fact_checker">Like all major newspapers</a>, there will be no factchecking. </li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.dissidentvoice.org/May05/Frank0526.htm">Like <em>Newsweek</em></a>, I will run any possibly unflattering stories by my subjects before publishing them.<sup id="fnref:1"><a href="#fn:1" rel="footnote">1</a></sup>
</li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/movable_type/2004_archives/001257.html">Like Bob Woodward</a>, I will totally adopt the point of view of my sources in a piece, even if this means contradicting a previous piece. </li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A14777-2004Oct7.html">Like Judith Miller</a>, I will go to jail in order to protect a source who committed a crime. </li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2004/05/27/times/index2.html">Like Judith Miller</a>, I will continue to insist my stories are true even when they obviously aren&rsquo;t. </li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.dailyhowler.com+ceci+connolly">Like Ceci Connolly of the <em>Washington Post</em></a> and <a href="http://archive.salon.com/news/feature/2000/03/06/hillary_clinton/index1.html">Chris Vlasto of ABC News</a>, I will fabricate quotes and doctor audiotapes if it will help my political cause.</li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.dailyhowler.com/dh032204.shtml">Like Elizabeth Bumiller of the <em>New York Times</em></a>, I will write complete puff pieces about people in power.</li>
<li>Like practically everyone famous, I will provide glowing blurbs for books I&rsquo;ve never read.</li>
<li>
<a href="http://www.aaronsw.com/weblog/001677">Like most news outlets</a>, I will no longer try to provide facts about things and instead focus on personality.</li>
<li>
<a href="http://mediamatters.org/items/200408300011">Like Robert Novak</a>, I will promote products from my friends and family without disclosing my association.</li>
</ol>
<p>The fun starts tomorrow, with a glowing profile of Seth Finkelstein (assuming he approves it, of course). But the first thing I plan to do as a journalist is convene a panel on blogger ethics. Somebody really needs to stop those guys before things get out of hand.</p>
<div class="footnotes">
<hr>
<ol>
<li id="fn:1">
<p>I remember seeing a more detailed piece about this that included quotes from major media figures saying that Newsweek did the right thing in this case. I can&rsquo;t seem to find it but if anybody else can, please let me know.&nbsp;<a href="#fnref:1" rev="footnote">&#8617;</a></p>
</li>
</ol>
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