The central theme emerging in this series of posts is influence. I maintain my original conclusion: “If the content we publish is sound and profitable, influence is precious.” In the last post, the supreme benefit of using social media was the opportunity to expand influence. Now I turn my attention to blogging with integrity, which also might be understood as exerting influence with integrity.
Blogging with Integrity is “Others-centered”
Most social media sites are by nature about you. That’s not inherently wrong. Even a blog is more or less about you (your interests, etc.). Integrity is lost, if while using these platforms, you lose sight of others. This is the achilles heel of social media. On one hand, there are unprecedented opportunities to network and multiply the numbers of people you can potentially benefit. On the other hand, the inhalation of the fumes of acceptance and popularity can be intoxicating (and quite addicting).
Blogging with integrity means your primary goals have to do with the profit of your reader, not you! This makes for a quality blog (or other social media site)–helpful posts, links, downloadable resources, podcasts, comments, and perhaps even (dare I say) status updates. Each time that ‘click’ results in information going public, consider the effect. Every ‘click’ is an opportunity.
Posting with a Purpose
The prerequisite to being ‘others-centered’ is posting with a purpose. It requires thought prior to posting, prior to throwing up the pictures, prior to replying in a comment box. If the purpose is not honorable, integrity is lost. Drop it and move on. How many battles have been fought, even on biblioblogs, in the comment sections or in response posts?! Good discussion entails critique, not attack.
Does Integrity Matter?
Not to everybody, but it should. There are simply some who live by a ‘whatever-it-takes’ attitude. That is their prerogative. I don’t care to argue with those who operate this way. I’m assuming that most of you desire to maintain a certain amount of integrity as you crawl around the web. I also think your readers desire integrity from you, too.
Again, if the content is sound and profitable, influence is precious. But the means of advancing that influence has everything to do with integrity.