I came across an online article called Making Ethical Decisions: The Six Pillars of Character. It defines those six pillars as:
I have seen these ideas painted as images on the side of our local school board building in town, and so the article drew me in right away. I want to explore the first pillar, trustworthiness, a bit today in terms of blogging. According to the article,
Trustworthiness is the most complicated of the six core ethical values and concerns a variety of qualities like honesty, integrity, reliability and loyalty.
I guess my current thoughts related to trustworthiness and blogging are along the lines of maintaining what I hope is a trustworthy relationship with you as I start to explore new avenues in my quilting (like my creative exploration in the Reclamation Project mini quilt series) and in my blog. I am starting to develop and sell patterns, I am exploring the possibility of some site sponsorship, and I am trying to balance my desire to create and cultivate community through discussions like this post, tutorials, and posts about quilt progress (and not just ta-da quilt finishes). Another thought that comes to my mind quickly is honesty in blog posts. Renee @Quilts of a Feather recently had an honest and reflective post about her experiences in a year of swaps. I think that having honest discussions like Renee’s are essential to maintaining balance in blogland. Don’t get me wrong; I am also all about being nice, but I also am interested in some good, honest discussions. When I participated in Beth @plum and june‘s New Quilter’s Blog Hop last year, there was quite a bit of discussion about what makes a blog one that you would want to follow. I think that a lot of first impressions (trustworthiness, compatibility, etc.) about a blogger can be tied up in the design aesthetic that a blog is presented in. Most people said that they preferred clean blogs with white backgrounds, easy to read text, and large photographs. I learned a lot from that discussion, and I see a glimmer of truth and insight into trustworthiness stemming even from blog layout and aesthetic choices. Am I crazy?
Reliability is an interesting characteristic in blogland. I think I err on the side of having an obnoxious number of posts during the week (this year I am averaging just at a post a day, eep!). I hope that it is not obnoxious, and as I mentioned above, I have been struggling with ideas on the balance of everything: I want to share community and discussion topics like this, I want to host the Quilty Thankful Thursday link up, I want to share tips and tutorials, and I want to have honest work in progress discussions along with quilt finishes. Stack it all up and I have a backlog of ideas that seems to just keep growing.
On the other end of the spectrum from where I currently sit are bloggers who post once or twice a week to once or twice a month. I am amazed at the amount of beautiful quilting creativity and creations I see being made by people who are working full time, who are parenting full time, or are caring for aging parents full time. One thing that I would say to you, if you are in this category and feeling sad about a less frequent posting schedule: please don’t apologize to me. I think you are amazing. I cannot imagine juggling so many balls, still finding crafting (sanity) time, and then blogging about it. I don’t need apologies, I need whatever energy or drive or stamina that keeps you fueled and going!
And so I want to wrap up by asking of you today, what makes a blogger or brand trustworthy? Why do you shop at a particular online retailer or local quilt store? What makes you keep coming back to visit certain blogs?