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When You’re Asked to Lie

The other day a client gave me a writing assignment and when we were discussing the content I began to get the idea that perhaps they weren’t being truthful in what they wanted to be written.

We continued to speak for a little more and I felt that I had no choice but to bring my concerns to their attention. I chose my words carefully and spoke them in what I hoped was a professional and non-accusatory tone of voice. Imagine my surprise when they readily agreed and admitted to “fudging the truth.”

I was left speechless and they tried to explain the falsehood away and all the while I was silently questioning and wondering if I could do the project and write what was admittedly false.

After listening for a few moments, I politely interrupted them and explained that there was no need to continue because I wouldn’t be able to write their content. I explained that I was uncomfortable because I knew it was dishonest and even though I was simply “ghost-writing,” it still wasn’t something I could do for them.

Please understand that the “fudging” wasn’t about anything illegal and I admit that would have put me in an even more uncomfortable position, but rather it had to do with some of their commitments to customers about their timeline and such.

Maybe I shouldn’t have taken that very high road because after all, writing content helps me to pay my bills but in the long run, I know that I couldn’t look myself in the mirror if I wrote something that I knew wasn’t 100% true.

Am I being too naïve? Perhaps but when I go to sleep at night I don’t ever want to feel that I have been deceitful and caused anyone to be stressed.

Do you think I did the right thing

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