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IBM and Sun have each issued corporate blogging policies and it is interesting to compare the way the two documents address issues that every corporation faces.

Companies need to determine what to allow employees to disclose about the company in their blogs and what to prohibit. The key is to provide enough freedom to be able to demonstrate intellectual ability without giving away intellectual property. I find the language in the IBM policy more clear.

Says Sun “As of now, you are encouraged to tell the world about your work, without asking permission first (but please do read and follow the advice in this note). Blogging is a good way to do this.”
Says IBM: “The core principles — written by IBM bloggers over a period of ten days using an internal wiki — are designed to guide IBMers as they figure out what they’re going to blog about so they don’t end up like certain notable ex-employees of certain notable other companies. … this isn’t a policy that IBM is imposing upon us — it is a committment that we all have entered into together.”

On disclosure issues, both are similar:
Financial Rules: There are all sorts of laws about what we can and can’t say, business-wise. Talking about revenue, future product ship dates, roadmaps, or our share price is apt to get you, or the company, or both, into legal trouble.

5. Respect copyright, fair use and financial disclosure laws.
6. Don’t provide IBM’s or another’s confidential or other proprietary information.