Ethical Guidelines for Writing

People write every day. They write tweets, Facebook posts, blogs, business proposals, contracts, comments, reviews, and many other types of content.

However, while writing, most people, especially keyboard warriors, don’t consider ethical implications; they write what comes to mind.

Whether you are a professional writer, blogger, business owner, novelist, or even a social media user, when writing anything, you must follow some ethical guidelines and always stay within certain boundaries. The moment you cross those boundaries, you can get a backlash. If your words can hurt someone’s feelings, they can also hurt you. Therefore, always follow ethical and legal guidelines. Otherwise, the consequences could be very harsh.

This article will enlighten you about some ethical guidelines you must follow while writing for any platform.

Following these guidelines can help you stay safe and avoid legal and ethical repercussions.

So, let’s get acquainted with them without further ado!

Ethical Guidelines for Writing

  1. Never Steal Others’ Ideas and Words

Originality is a must-have quality for writing. Don’t steal others ‘ ideas and words, whether you are writing a tweet, research article, blog, or business proposal.

Stealing others’ content and claiming their authority can lead you to failure and legal troubles.

There are many cases when people stole others’ content and published it with their names, and they had to pay for it. For example, Alex Haley, the Pulitzer award winner, copied a few portions of “The African” by Harold Courlander and used it in his book “Roots: The Saga of an American Family.” Courlander sued him and demanded compensation. Although the matter was resolved outside the court, Haley had to pay $650,000 to Courlander in compensation.

Similarly, there are many other famous and infamous cases when the plagiarists had to pay for their acts with their reputation or money. To avoid legal or ethical troubles, get inspiration from others’ content but don’t steal it.

  1. Maintain Impartiality

Impartiality ensures fairness, integrity, trust, and objectivity. That’s why it is also essential in writing. When writing an article, you must not let your personal bias influence your writing. Your bias can force you to give inaccurate information to readers or hide some facts and figures that people need to understand a phenomenon.

Whether you are writing a research article, new story, blog, or any other document, you must maintain impartiality. Especially in the case of news and blog writing, maintaining objectivity is a must. It helps people form their opinions based on facts and figures instead of being influenced by a writer or editorial board.

Similarly, it is crucial for academic writing as academic integrity demands trust, fairness, honesty, respect, and responsibility. If you don’t stay impartial, you damage all the pillars of academic integrity that can damage your research articles’ credibility and misguide other students and researchers about different matters because there are ethical issues matter in education.

  1. Respect Others

When penning down anything, always be respectful. Your moral and ethical obligation is to use positive language and avoid offensive words and expressions. Even if you are writing content against someone, you must still be careful about word selection.

Usually, some people use offensive language against their competitors or opponents. That language hurts their feelings and your reputation as a writer as well.

Moreover, give respect to the feelings of everyone, regardless of their gender, age, demographics, cultural beliefs, religion, identities, and disabilities. You can be charged with a crime if your words cause harm to someone or incite someone to take severe actions. So, always be careful when choosing words to describe your feelings or information.

  1. Maintain Accuracy

Authors should not only show respect to readers by using positive language but also by providing accurate information. For example, if you are a journalist, it’s your moral, ethical, and journalistic obligation to convey the information without fabricating the facts. Sometimes, the writers don’t provide accurate information to readers because they support some agendas or have personal biases. When you write anything, you must refrain from making this mistake.

If you claim to be a reliable source of information, you must prove your claims by providing accurate and detailed information. Accuracy is also essential for other kinds of writing besides journalistic writing. For instance, bloggers and copywriters should always provide factual information and inform people about different matters instead of influencing them.

  1. Always be clear

Clarity is also essential when writing for any audience. With clarity, you may adequately convey the information. That’s why almost every professional writer suggests others bring clarity to their work.

Moreover, it is also an ethical obligation. When you give a piece of information to someone, it must be clear in every way.

For example, suppose you are crafting a legal document, business proposal, contract, or any other document. In that case, you must avoid confusion and mention everything.

However, some writers deliberately don’t clarify things to exploit the knowledge gaps. This practice is against ethics as the writers snub the right to information. Usually, copywriters do it as they want to sell products by telling people about their advantages and hiding their disadvantages.


Knowing the art of knitting different words and creating an outstanding product doesn’t make a writer great. Many other variables also play a significant role in helping wordsmiths become great writers. And ethics is one of them. No matter how good you are at writing informative, engaging, and captivating content, you may need to follow ethical guidelines to get the response you want.

Instead, your words can backfire and put you into different troubles. So, always follow the ethical boundaries mentioned in this article and show some respect to fellow writers and your readers.