A few months ago, Ryan Sholin, writing at BeatBlogging.org, offered a “A brief rundown of the reasons your news organization needs to tie the web together.” Although his focus is on reporters, Sholin’s rules apply to anyone posting content on the web these days.
- We owe it to our readers to give them as much of the information we have at our disposal.
- Linking to sources and resources is the key gesture to being a citizen of the Web and not just a product on the Web.
- It’s the best way to connect directly with the online community.
- We absolutely do not know everything, but we know where to find out most of what we don’t know.
- It will make our jobs easier.
In looking at his recommendations, it’s easy to see how “readers” could be members and community could be “industry” or “association”. The principles are the same: Sharing what you know is sign of respect, trust and engagement – all good things in this linked age.
While I have the opportunity, let me add an appeal to avoid making people link to or download PDFs. There are better options!