Social Netiquette

The trend for social networking via websites has made new demands on traditional etiquette. Play it safe, and always employ your usual good manners when online, treating others with kindness and respect.

Don't make friends with people who you don't know. It's not a competition to see how many friends you can get. Think carefully before you accept someone or remove someone as a friend. Don't annoy your friends by constant, frantic poking.

Don't let online social networking take over all other methods of communication. Letters and phone calls are still important. Send birthday cards rather than a message on a networking site. Call your friends to tell them important news rather than posting an announcement online.

Think carefully about the photos you post, both of yourself and others. Consider your friends' feelings. Would they be happy for everyone to see the unflattering picture of them after their fourth tequila shot?

Think about what your profile picture says about you, and don't fall into the trap of turning the online universe into a fantasy world, where you are more attractive and successful than in real life. Social networking is meant to complement and enhance your existing social life, not completely obliterate it.

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