As a professional blogger, I lead an interesting life.
No, not quite that interesting.
What I mean is that the line between my personal life and my professional life is blurring. And, in many ways, it's blurring for all of us as our information becomes more and more accessible to the Whole Wide World.
That's why I thought twice about writing my latest personal post ...and then went ahead and did it anyway. While I always try to be fair, I'm a little more "contained" on this blog.
So why am I writing about this over here on my blog about Sonlight and homeschooling?
Because one of my jobs here at Sonlight is to be a "Media Relations Specialist" and keep tabs on the crazy world of social media. And that means watch what people say about Sonlight on their blogs and help customers or give more information where possible.
Much like what I think--and hope--Macon Phillips meant in his post. And, in many ways, I totally understand the desire to "keep track of all [rumors]" because I'd like to do the same thing. It's very important to help people know the truth if they somehow have the wrong idea.
But Phillips' word choice was poor.
He wants citizens to email in "fishy" sites to an address that "flags" it for the Whitehouse? For what purpose? To what end?
If Phillips would have elaborated more on what's going to happen, I think it wouldn't be nearly as disturbing. But since he did not elaborate, and we're already heard some pretty scary things from fishy sites, he didn't help us feel better.
Also, since I get paid for what I do here at Sonlight, I am interested in how much tax money is going into this initiative. I think, much like my position, this is probably fairly important if done correctly. So, in the spirit of giving, here's what I do:
- I ask people to tell me about things that they think I'd be interested to know.
- If someone has misinformation about Sonlight, I try to inform them graciously.
- If someone has a complaint against Sonlight, I do everything I can to make the situation right.
- I have alerts that let me know when people talk about Sonlight on their blogs so I can add them to my reader and get to know them and where they're coming from.
- I try to focus on the positives. Because I can say whatever I want about Sonlight, but it's the people who have actually experienced it that have the most credibility.
- I leave comments open so people can talk to me if they want.
Granted, my position at Sonlight is probably significantly smaller--and of less mass appeal--than one of the hottest topics in the political world right now. But if you're opening yourself up to a barrage of emails, I hope you've got a system in place to handle them.
I know I do:
Media Relations Specialist