Here are a few rules that would go a long way to clean things up:
- Ask yourself: If I ran across this post without knowing the author, would I care?
- Is this adding value to the wealth of information or the organization of the web?
- No personal, isolated stories included simply for the sake of telling
- Did some thought and effort go into the composition and actual text of this entry?
- Are any scientific or concrete claims/statistics cited? You may have a great point, but if it’s based on stats that, for all I know, you arbitrarily dreamed up yourself, I don’t care.
- Make connections between your article and other related or available info online. Nothing exists in isolation and every story benefits from some context. Even quote related material from other sources.
- Copying someone else’s work, however, without a citation is not okay. Period.
- Avoid personal isolated stories or anecdotes about personal life.
- When commenting on the contributions of someone else, do so in a constructive manner. Far too often do we experience a battle of words between conflicting voices, which does nothing for the readership but polarize and interrupt valuable discussion.
- Finally, seek out stories from less popular sources. There is so much interesting stuff out there that gets lost in the shuffle. These things deserve a little extra publicity and will break up the monotony of alternating links to Lifehacker and Engadget.
Consider each of your contributions not as a soapbox from which to rant about trivial things in your own life, or selfish goals, but rather a contribution for the benefit of others around you. Try not to pollute this thing we all depend on and love so much.