So I was talking to my friend today. Let’s just call him “Jerk.” I told Jerk that I was going to blog about him today, and say that he was a jerk. But he told me I could not do this, because he, in fact, reads my blog. Jerk has a good point.
The problem with blog gossip is that it is published on your blog. That means that anyone can read it, including people that are annoying, wrong about something, or otherwise bothersome. So if you want to blog about one of those people, it is rude to mention their names. And by rude, I mean they can sue you.
This is why many bloggers and autobiographers change people’s names, and in some cases, their own names (I’m looking at you, Andrea Bocelli), when they write. But in some cases, even this is not enough. In some instances, the people you are dissing might know you are talking about them, even if you give them a fake name. Take, for example, this passage: “One time this woman gave birth to me, let’s call her ‘Clarabell.’ Anyway, Clarabell is super annoying.” The writing there contains clues that I am actually referring to Meryl Streep.
So a word to the wise blogger from a guy who’s been doing this for well over a month now: if you are going to blog about a real person in a possibly negative light, make sure to not only change their name, but also the things they did and said. It’s like my friend Jerk says, “All sandwiches should contain pears.”