Social Media Manners : Employing Etiquette Online

Everyone uses one form of social media or the other from Whats app to Snap chat it has  become the norm. However It’s not without its ills. For example  Facebook has almost metamorphosed from a nice place where you could catch up with old friends to a boxing arena where verbal  exchanges take place between friends and strangers alike. Cyber bullying is even occurring among teens and people just don’t know how to behave online. However the web can be beautiful place if we all just learn to behave properly there. Here are some ways you can make the  World Wide Web a saner place.
Avoid hot topics: If you avoid controversy it won’t find you. During  elections things can get a bit tense online and unless you have the energy for a good fight its best to stay clear of controversial issues. Sex , Religion and Politics are usually areas that should be kept of limits or discussed with caution.

Keep it down: When you are watching your a video from your favourite social media celebrity in a  public place mind other people around you and keep it down. Invest in  good headphones so that wherever you are, you can keep listening without being a nuisance to people around you.

Excuse yourself: If you happen to be on a Whatsapp group or any group where your absence will be obvious then try to ensure you excuse yourself politely. Just leaving a group when there was no altercation or issue can appear rude. Also make sure you seek clarification from group admins on the groups “do’s and don’ts” for instance constantly advertising your business may seem “spamlike” and could  be annoying.

Don’t shout: It’s amazing that in 2017 people still don’t realise that when you type in all CAPS it signifys shouting so unless that’s your intent be mindful.

Put your phone down! : You don’t have to look at every single Facebook  notification the moment it comes in, especially when you are with other people. It can be really rude when you are having a discussion with someone and your eyes and hands are constantly on your phone. Try muting your notifications and checking them at certain times a day only.

Pause before you post: Think about it …is what you are about to post necessary ? Is it something you may regret later ? Never post in fits of anger as even when you take down your post the internet never forgets. Also no matter the provocation do not air your dirty linen online or engage in unnecessary online arguments.

Keep work out of your timeline : OK so your boss is really annoying and you are tempted to tell the whole world via IG or Facebook. Well don’t! Apart from being immature everyone including your  boss  who may not be your Facebook Friend or even have a Facebook account will see it. In the same way avoid posting too much private stuff where your employees can see it. A picture of yourself smoking weed or drinking heavily does not create a good impression.

Engage your followers: If you open your pages to receive comments then try and engage your followers. When they leave nice comments take time to like them or reply as much as possible. If you have lots of comments it would be impossible to reply them all,  but when you can try and acknowledge your followers even if its with a general comment. If you are very busy and can afford it  then consider employing a social media manager to handle your accounts and engage with followers on your behalf.

Limit your children’s time online: to be fair anyone under 13 has no business on social media, and even at this age you need to set the rules. Try creating a family Media plan telling your family where and when they can use the Internet, what social media platforms they can use and what they are allowed to post.At night it may be a good idea to hold on to your children’s gadgets and monitor their online activity. Try ensuring they are are safe while online by installing web filtering software and look out for signs of cyber bullying.

Don’t be a troll: The faceless nature of social media has enabled many online trolls who leave hurtful comments or make posts that are nothing short of evil. Remember to do unto others as you would like to be done unto you.

These are some rules that I try to abide with, what about you? What social media manners do you employ in your household?


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