Tag Archives: blog etiquette

Death of the hat tip?

There is a disturbing trend I’ve noticed among L.A. bloggers lately: the customary “hat tip” is more and more being ignored.

A hat tip, often abreviated to “h/t,” is “an acknowledgement to someone (or a website) for bringing something to the blogger’s attention.” (from Blogossary).

I “hat tip” rather liberally, in the spirit of community, but also because pretending that I’ve magically discovered different news items, events, or details to be arrogant. I also keep this practice because blogs simply make it easy to do so.

I think some blogs are deliberately ignoring the practice because they believe they’re too big to do this anymore, possibly believing they are now equal to mainstream media (who see no need to acknowledge sources of details if they later verify details themselves). These same blogs seem to forget that one of the most read blogs out there, Boing Boing, offer a hat tip in almost every entry.

I’m not calling out names on this because, I’m sad to say, friends of mine have even refused to offer me “hat tips” for one reason or another. Sure, they probably have their reasons, whether its corporate oversite, or merely because they don’t want to appear to have been scooped, no matter how banal the topic.

I just hope blogs, no matter how big they get, don’t forget that at one time they prided themselves on not being mainstream media, and likewise held themselves to a different standard, including a basic respect of the friendly, easy hat tip.