Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Facebook Etiquette Tips - Do's and Don'ts

There are right and wrong ways to interact and portray yourself in the online forum known as Facebook. Follow these tips to get it right.

Facebook can be a dream come true as an easy way to keep in touch with friends and loved ones, or it can be a nightmare for someone's professional and social life. A little common sense and proper use of the site and its settings make for the best Facebook experience.

Etiquette Rules Concerning Friending on Facebook
While users can ask just about anyone to be their friend on Facebook (unless their settings make them completely private), whether or not they will be accepted is another question. People have many reasons for accepting and ignoring friendship requests, those who are ignored should not overthink it and simply move on.

  • Don't be offended if someone does not reply to a friend request. They may prefer to keep their group of friends to a very limited few or they may want to keep work and social lives separate, among other reasons.
  • Don't ask someone to be your friend more than once.
  • Don't friend someone who you are not comfortable seeing your photos or hearing about your daily life.
  • Don't friend someone, especially younger Facebook users, if your content would be inappropriate for their age group.
  • Don't make friend requests of your friends' friends if you don't know them. Some Facebook users believe having a lot of friends is a kind of competition.
  • Do reserve friending for people you truly care about and are interested in, not a way of keeping score of your popularity.

A common concern of new Facebook users is if someone who is friended can then be deleted later without them knowing. The answer is no, the friend is not notified. However, they may notice their number of friends has dropped by one. If they have many other friends, they may never even figure out who "unfriended" them.

Photos and Tagging on Facebook
The best way to keep control of photos is to adjust the settings on Facebook, found in the upper right hand corner of the home page. The settings allow any photos tagged of a person to be visible only to that person, and not all their friends. This is the best way to keep embarrassing drunken party pics from threatening someone's job.

  • Don't tag photos of your friends on Facebook that could get them in trouble.
  • Don't tag your friends in unflattering photos. Tagging photos of friends dressed in old 80s fashions and with bad perms can be funny, but tagging a picture of them taken last week with food between their teeth is not so funny.
  • Do use Facebook to share photos of vacations, kids, and new events in your life, rather than stuffing their e-mail inbox with the pics.
  • Do add a profile picture of yourself so searchers know which "Maggie Jones" is the right Maggie Jones.

Other Facebook Etiquette Rules
Many of the rules for good Facebook etiquette are the same rules that apply to any online communications. Common courtesy, decency, good manners, and the golden rule apply on Facebook as well.

  • Don't type something you wouldn't say in real life. You shouldn't hide behind a computer and say hurtful things that you wouldn't dream of saying to someone's face.
  • Don't share something on your page or in your status that you don't want everyone on your Friend list to know.
  • Do use Facebook messaging for sharing more private things.
  • Don't share identifying information such as your address or telephone number.
  • Don't feel obligated to add applications because friends sent them to you.
  • Do choose those who already have an application to interact with for those applications that you also wish to participate in. For example, in the Lil Green Patch, click on Greenie Friends and send to just those who already welcomed the application.
  • Do be careful what you post. While it's okay to vent, remember that if you are venting about your boss, just because he or she is not on your friend list does not mean it won't get back to them somehow.
  • Do keep any information learned about your co-workers on Facebook to yourself at the office.
  • Do be careful of your tone. It can be hard to tell when people are joking or being sarcastic.
  • Don't type in all caps unless you really mean to shout, otherwise it's just annoying and becomes tedious quickly.

Facebook can be a great tool, just remember to use common sense and follow the golden rule: treat others as you would want to be treated.

SOURCE: suite101.com

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