Just a suggestion – as part of the disclaimer/disclosure/about page I’m sure all of you have – consider adding a confidentiality clause/disclaimer page. Nota bene – I’m not an attorney, don’t play one on tv and don’t plan to do either.
Consumers are looking to blogs more and more, because of the bloggers’ transparency and demonstrated knowledge, expertise and character. If your experience is anything like mine, you likely get emails from consumers requesting help, advice, information and the occasional second opinion. Agency questions/conflicts aside – if the reader doesn’t feel comfortable asking, we won’t be able to help or learn.
Are we journalists who might legitimately hide behind the shield of the free press, or are we Realtors? I will continue to argue that many of us (one size absolutely does not fit all) are both.
As the author, the confidentiality is understood and implied, but an email from a reader a few months ago highlighted the confidentiality quandary. This is certainly not the first such email I have received but it is the one that triggered the shift in my (blog’s) behavior. He sent me a long, detailed email explaining his situation, naming names, giving financial information about all parties – keep in mind these are all local to my market – and asked for advice.
At the end of the email, he requested confidentiality. That he made this request at the end was gratifying – it demonstrated the already-established trust that the blog had conveyed – but it made me put myself in his and others’ shoes.
Of course all emails to me are confidential; but my knowledge of this was not sufficient, do do I want for my readers – and clients – to have to make this assumption.
So now I am clear on my ever-evolving privacy page (y’all have one of these, right?)
I’m sure that there are better ways to proclaim confidentiality and privacy – what are the best examples you’ve seen or used?