Inconsiderately Polite

College Students' Views on Etiquette Online

What exactly is Online Etiquette?

There are certain rules that one is meant to follow when it comes to the Internet. When given a formal writing experience, you are expected to follow these unwritten rules. However, when given an informal writing experience, these rules usually go out the window. When sending text messages, emails, Tweets, Facebook posts, or simple notes to friends and family, we usually do not follow these social etiquette rules. However, how far is too far? If you are not sending a Tweet with the same etiquette that you send an email to your boss with, how are you going to send messages to your brain to differentiate between these different etiquettes? In an article entitled, “Atwood in the Twittersphere,”

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

Margaret Atwood states, “Oops! I shouldn’t have said that. Which is typical of ‘social media:’ you’re always saying things you shouldn’t have said.” She then goes on to state that when she went to sign up for Twitter, there was already another Margaret Atwood. Is there a certain etiquette on the Internet for honesty? What are the rules surrounding using your own picture on Facebook, your own name on Twitter, or taking someone else’s phone to send a text message? If these rules are not written down, how do we know what we are supposed to do?

As a college student, Social Media sites are something that are intertwined in my everyday life. I check Facebook and Twitter first thing in the morning, scroll through dozens of Instagram pictures when I’m bored, and pin random recipes and cool things that I find out Pinterest while I should be doing homework. Now a new comer to Facebook or Twitter might not be aware that it is not appropriate for users to post their personal problems for everyone to see. A newcomer to Instagram might not be aware that a certain number of “selfies” is not acceptable. But how are these newcomers supposed to know these rules? They are not published. They are not handed out in a Social Media Welcome packet. Like everyone else in the Social Media world, you have to learn the rules the hard way. This may come from being made fun of for the “selfie” that you posted, or you might get yelled at for calling someone out on Facebook. The Social Media world can be a cruel one, and one must learn to fit in, just like the real world.

 

 

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Inconsiderately Polite

College Students' Views on Etiquette Online

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