7 Etiquette Tips for Social Networking
Social networking is transforming our social lives. More and more of our relationships are developed - and terminated - online. Instead of picking up the phone or knocking on a neighbor's door, we now interact with others on so many levels through the social networking websites and their messaging capabilities.
Yet, because it has all happened so quickly, many people are unsure of the relevant online etiquette. Here are seven tips for relating to others effectively and respectfully in cyberspace.
1. In your posts on Facebook or your tweets on Twitter, or anywhere else, avoid sharing too much with too many people. While everyone who knows you will be overjoyed to learn that you gave birth to a healthy, bouncing baby, not everyone needs - or wants - a play-by-play account of your labor. Save that for the same selected few with whom you would share it in person.
2. Keep business and pleasure separate. This involves understanding the difference between different social networking venues. It's perfectly okay on LinkedIn to introduce yourself to a hiring manager - who happens to be the contact of a friend - and highlight your work experience and skills. However, that is definitely not okay on Facebook.
3. Don't scoop someone else's big personal announcement. If you hear that a friend or family member got engaged, inherited a million dollars, or was given a big promotion, let that person announce the news first! Then you can comment or "like" it, or add your congratulations. This is even more important with sad news, like a death or a marriage breakup.
4. Keep the language of your tweets and other general social media announcements relatively clean. When words of yours are being broadcast to - potentially - hundreds or even thousands of people, the language of the locker room is not appropriate. Remember that your mother-in-law or a future boss may be among the recipients!
5. You are free to respond or not - as you wish - to general announcements or invitations. For example, if someone you hardly know invites all and sundry to a rally against climate change, there's no need for a personal response. However, if an invitation is directed to a smaller group - such as a set of classmates from a course you just finished - it's appropriate to respond so that the host can estimate the number of attendees.
6. Never end a relationship via a social media announcement. It's decidedly uncool to send a breakup tweet or let your significant other know about your decision by changing your Facebook status. There are still things that should be said offline and in private.
7. Don't tag someone in a photo that you're posting, especially a potentially embarrassing one, unless you're certain that it's okay. Of course, the best way to make sure is by asking permission. Yes, it's a drag, but some people are a little touchy about having a snapshot of their inebriated face searchable by anyone with access to the Internet.
Good online etiquette fulfills the same function as offline manners - it helps you to maintain positive, respectful relationships with others. That's important, whether in cyberspace or on solid ground.
Article From Inter Valley Health Plan