Basic Social Media Etiquette, Part I

Category: Social Media Social Good Series

Cartoon about Good Manners

Yes, Hank Ketcham was thinking of me!

There are many columns about Netiquette as it’s been termed by some – or proper etiquette on Social Media. I have my own thinking and thoughts on this that I’d like to share. It’s less only etiquette than ways to make things easier for all and, in some cases, just thoughts on how to make things better for all.

Social Media and Einstein

Granted, I have a pretty “out there” personality so some of what I do not only is not a good idea, but also gets me in trouble at times. I will leave those things to your imagination. Let’s just say they’re not obnoxious selfies – the new word of the year according to Webster’s (truth).

There is this radical idea that some people subscribe to that is called, “Common Sense” and it works for pretty much everything from high tech developments to face2face relationships. If it doesn’t pass the CS test, it probably won’t pass any other as well. So first ask yourself, “Does this seem right (or cool, or common sense, or chill, or whatever word you’d like to use)?”

Cartoon about SoMe Etiquette

I think the number one rule of behavior for SoMe is the number one rule of life – do unto others as you’d like them to do unto you. Very simple. That adage never goes out of style. Beginning with the most basic habits, let’s take answering any “call” as the first rule to observe. By “call” I mean literally anything from a phone call to a text. Any attempt to reach you usually deserves a response, and in many cases a prompt one.

Of course disregard spam and other offensive “calls,” and prioritize the others. Again, common sense should be your barometer. If Mom is calling to make sure you took your vitamins you can put that on the back burner. If it’s job-related, perhaps a quick response is in order.

Wedding Social Media Etiquette - Facebook

Other common sense rules of SoMe include:

~~ Remember people’s names. Too many twitter handles are not the person’s name (not a good idea, by the way – see my Twitter Bio column). But, often they will have their name either in their Twitter Bio or on a link included in their TB. Find it out and address them by name.

~~ Take overnight to reflect on ANYTHING you want to post that is divisive, mean, or comes from anger. The next day might shine some light on the foolishness of going public with that feeling. Feelings are fleeting. Most everything posted online is permanent.

~~ I’m a firm believer in self-promotion and I’m also a believer in not being anal about how much you post about yourself vs. posting about others. However, it’s a great guide to always ask what you can do to support or help others. It’s simply karma and it does come around; usually in unexpected ways.

Truly this is a short-list of ideas to enhance your social media experiences. I welcome your additions in the comments section below…

Cartoon about SoMe Netiquette