Getting Started with The Motley Fool Blog Network

Hi Blogger-to-Be –

Thanks for your interest in writing for The Motley Fool Blog Network. We have two goals -- the first is to have you produce outstanding and useful content that reaches a broad expanse of individual investors, the second is to help you improve your analysis and your writing to the point that you can earn a contract writing with Fool.com (a role that can mean over $100,000 a year!). Together, we'll be helping the world invest better.

Thousands have expressed strong interest in joining the Fool’s newest community, and we’re seeing a gravitational force now that we’ve started to roll, as word spreads of the quality of our content, the breadth of our distribution, and the benefits we are able to offer our bloggers. In the coming years, tens of thousands will join. We’re at the start of something very big.

We’re proud that as we’ve reached out to bloggers, we have not sacrificed on any quality standard, nor will we ever. We will not become another pump-and-dump message board that allows anonymous bloggers free rein. We only want and will only syndicate quality insights created by writers who stand behind their work. And I ask you to hold me personally accountable to ensure that we never devolve into a site none of us wants to read.

We’re also pleased to let you know that we have decided on a pay structure that is clear, transparent, and, we hope, generous. If you write an entry that is thoughtful, well-written, and makes specific and relevant mention of businesses and their tickers, we will syndicate that entry (i.e., publish it to the Yahoo! Finance, MSN Money, and DailyFinance ticker feeds) and pay you $50. If your posts are awesome on a consistent basis-- they make us think, they show us something new, they make a point, they tell a story, they are clear, compelling, and Foolish -- then we'll pay you $100 per post.

For some of you, that might just be a starting point for your relationship with the Fool. We’ll be keeping an eye out for the best writers and analysts and the bloggers who earn the biggest followings, and we’ll be offering writer contracts to the best of the best. And that can lead to even bigger things.

Now, in the interest of transparency, some fine print.

Trading Guidelines and Disclosure

We’re big on transparency and integrity at the Fool. That’s why we don’t allow anonymous bloggers, and that’s why we require each blogger to abide by our trading rules, which stipulate:

  • You must disclose any ownership stake in a stock, ETF, or closed-end fund you're writing about – long, short, or options.
  • You cannot mention a stock in a post until two market days after you’ve last executed a transaction in it.
  • You cannot execute a transaction in a stock you mention in one of your posts until two market days after the post is published.
  • If you manage money or are a Registered Investment Advisor, you must identify yourself and the firm or company you work for, as well as include specific disclosure text in each post.

Exclusivity

In order to post with us, you must agree that the submissions to The Motley Fool Blog Network are original, that you have the right to submit them for publication, and that they are either exclusive to The Motley Fool or cross-posted only from a personal blog or website – i.e., that no article has been or will be submitted for publication to another site. We have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to plagiarism.  

Legal Copyright Stuff

You are not surrendering your copyright in your expression by joining The Motley Fool Blog Network, but by submitting content you are granting The Motley Fool an unlimited, irrevocable, and perpetual license to republish, syndicate, and make derivative works out of anything you publish on our site.

Ethical Stuff

Your contributions, like all content at The Motley Fool, are still subject to our Fool’s Rules, so we reserve the right to yank any posts we deem offensive, unethical, illegal, or otherwise inappropriate, or for any other reason.  Check out the Rules for more details – they’re straightforward and informative – but for the most part, if you write to make your mom proud, we’ll all be fine.

Now you’re ready to get started! If you head to http://beta.fool.com/join, you should be able to start posting today.

Remember, we’re still in beta, so there’s a chance that things will break along the way, but let me know and we’ll get it fixed. Just keep me posted on your experience.

We’re glad to have you as part of The Motley Fool Blog Network!

Best,
Roger Friedman
President, TMF Blog Network


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