Why It’s No Longer Ethical to Be “Just a Blogger”
Better to be credible in front of a small audience than to be negligent in front of millions.
A few weeks ago, the New York Times released an article entitled Vaccines Need Effective Messengers. Here’s journalist Shira Ovide:
“Getting the science right is only one element of having coronavirus vaccines be successful. People must also trust them, and that requires an effective communications mobilization.”
The word to focus on in that paragraph is not “science,” “vaccine” or even “communications.”
“I have no training in epidemiology.
You should definitely not trust me.”
Pueyo echos the feeling any ethical writer has when faced with sudden, unexpected success in a new topic. It’s the hair-raising thrill of mass influence immediately followed by the vomit-inducing worry that you may have gotten your facts wrong.
It wasn’t long ago that bloggers and online creators were considered a sidebar of information. Sure, you could find an insight or two, but the “real” stuff still came from the networks.
When the world got desperate and scared this time, who did it look to?
Not the conglomerates, who have revealed their corruption in recent years. Not the politicians, who have progressively lost the trust of their constituents. Not the news media, who so thoroughly beats the drum of doom and gloom that when real doom and gloom came around it felt like business as usual.
No, the world looked to the people who had earned their trust. It looked to the new world influencers.
It looked at you.
On the surface, this isn’t a problem. Surely it’s better to have all the voices represented than an elite few. But lurking within the engines that drive the 2.5 billion gigabytes produced by the human race every single day is a troublesome issue: those…