Why have a code?
As the blogging world expands exponentially, more and more people in the culinary world believe that food bloggers—as a group—are unfair, highly critical, untrained and power hungry individuals empowered by anonymity. As writers, trained journalists and food bloggers, we feel it is unfair to be labeled something we aren’t. By creating a food blogger code of ethics, we hope to elevate our craft and draw attention to the food bloggers who hold themselves to higher standards.
Why should I subscribe to the ideas of The Code?
We believe you should be able to write about your experiences as you wish. We know everyone’s truth is different and we thoroughly appreciate the diversity of opinions within the food blogging realm. We are not against free speech. We do not believe in censoring. We do, however, believe in civility, honesty and truth.
We strive to make our blogs stand out from the rest through our writing and story telling. We created The Code because we felt it was important to define what our ethical standards were and clearly state them so that we could hold ourselves to those standards. The Code is not meant to be a mandatory thing for everyone in the blogosphere. This is our way to define what our standards are.
We are proud to be bloggers and hope to give the blogging community a better reputation. We wrote this because we were concerned that food bloggers were being unfairly judged as hacks, which the majority of us are not – with or without journalism degrees. And that by creating a code of conduct should give us MORE freedom to be honest, not less.
Who we are
The Food Blog Code of Ethics was written collaboratively by Brooke Burton and Leah Greenstein. We are also food writers and the people behind the food blogs SpicySaltySweet.com and FoodWoolf.com.If you believe its important to hold your food blog to a higher code and want to be listed here as someone that follows these guidelines, please contact us at foodblogethics at gmail.
Absolutely agree with everything. Please hold me accountable that I follow every single item of the code. I applaud your efforts and will do everything to support them.
At first I asked the question “why do we need this?” After all, simply because some disgruntled people in the food world want to paint food bloggers with a broad brush, that seems more like their problem than ours. I would also note that every food blog I’ve seen of any note or significant audience already basically follows these ideals. Sure, there are fringe blogs, but this is the Internet, and that will always be such things — a code won’t put a stop to that.
I also don’t think that a blog with a small following has to adhere to quite the same level of thoroughness compared to a major media source. If someone goes to a restaurant and wants to write about the experience, that is their right. Blogs can be personal things, and I don’t have a problem with that.
Lastly, I’ve been close to enough stories that I’m pretty cynical about the level of thoroughness and objectivity you see among many “professional journalists”. Way too often, their or their editor’s agenda defines what “facts” are presented. I know plenty of excellent, respectable journalists, but if one is painting with a broad accusatory brush, it can go both ways.
But I thought about it more, and decided that there are so many people jumping into food blogging now, and with those baby steps come a lot of questions on how to handle oneself as a blogger and (if desired) as a member of a great community. These guidelines will be useful in helping new bloggers get comfortable with a code of behavior without having to stub their toe on mishaps, a community finger-wagging and unintentional drama.
So that’s a long, and perhaps argumentative, way of saying I like this. 🙂
Thanks Giff! We’re really hoping to start a dialogue and to get people to think about things differently. We really appreciate your honesty and sharing how you came to your conclusion. Have a great weekend.
I think it’s great to have guidelines and I am happy to support them. I think this is a great way to show responsibility for oneself and others in the same field of interest. We all have a right to our opinion and this way perhaps others will be more interested in respecting the differences of our opinions when they have been given a degree of mindful attention. Luckily I haven’t seen and don’t read food blogs that don’t already adhere to these standards. The list of food blogs I choose to read have inspired me to find my voice and my truth and I am happy to contribute to this fantastic community by following the code.
I have to say that I haven’t been read too much that has been inaccurate or mean-spirited within the food blogosphere, (cranky Yelpers aside) but I certainly agree that these standards are simple common sense rules that should be second nature to those serious about food blogging.
As new kids on the block we have been very mindful about trying to be factual, respectful and professional, and are happy to lend our support to the code.
Thank you for your hard work. These are standards that should be upheld. Was surprised to read the blackmail link: too bad some people are destroying any integrity that might be held with particular websites.
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