Raising Awareness

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Developing Blog Policies


The briefing document provides advice on how to establish a policy for your blog.

Why Outline Your Blog Policies?

Most blog sites and software offer a section for the author to explain a little about themselves and their activities. Developing this section to include the policies by which your blog operates gives a clear message to your readers regarding your purpose and scope, promoting openness and transparency. These policies are useful as a guide, but are not legally binding, and you may wish to take professional advice depending on your circumstances. You may wish to use the following headings as a guide for areas to be included in your blog policy.

The Purpose of Your Blog

It may be useful to outline the purpose of your blog with reference to your organisational mission statement or operational goals. Explain why your blog exists and its aims and objectives, such as to inform library users of new resources or services, or to provide tips and techniques on learning materials for students. Your blog purpose may simply be to offer a voice from the library.

Scope and Target Audience

Outlining the scope of your blog can help focus your posts and tells your readers what to expect. Suggesting a frequency of posts also helps manage your reader expectations.

Specifying your target audience doesn't exclude other readers, but does help to make explicit who this blog is written for. Examples of target audiences may be your library users, colleagues, students, subject specialists, fellow researchers or simply yourself and your mentor if you are using your blog as a reflective journal.

Licensing Your Blog Posts

In a spirit of cooperation and sharing, many bloggers in the cultural heritage sector add a Creative Commons [1] licence to their blog. The Creative Commons Web site allows you to create a human-readable agreement that allows you to keep your copyright but permits people to copy and redistribute your work whilst giving you the credit.

Details of Quality Processes

Documenting the quality processes undertaken on your blog allows you to make explicit the writing style your readers can expect, any editorial processes involved and how changes to the text are treated. You may wish to provide an overview of how content for the blog is selected or developed. If your blog is personal or reflective, it may be worth providing a disclaimer to represent that the views expressed are strictly your own and do not represent the official stand of your employer.

If you cannot maintain your blog and need to close the service, it is good practice to archive the site and add a disclaimer stating the blog is no longer being maintained.

Comment Moderation and Removal of Material

Comment moderation can range from completely open commenting to requiring approval for each comment. It may help to inform your readers of your settings and to alert them that you reserve the right to archive their comments, or remove them if you feel they are inappropriate or outside the scope of the blog.


If your aim is to share experiences and contribute to a particular community of practice, it may be worth outlining how you plan to disseminate your work. This may signpost companion sources for your peers and colleagues, for example feeding your posts to a Facebook [2] group, or into a social networking site such as the Library 2.0 [3] and Museum 3.0 [4] Ning sites.

Reserving Your Rights

It may be wise to add a disclaimer to your policy document stating you reserve the right to make amendments to your policies at a later date if necessary. This gives you the flexibility to make changes if needed.


  1. License Your Work, Creative Commons, <>
  2. Facebook, <>
  3. Library 2.0, Ning, <>
  4. Museum 3.0, Ning, <>


This briefing document was written by Kara Jones, University of Bath.

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