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Is There Any Social Media Etiquette? » WheelhouseTK
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Is There Any Social Media Etiquette?

As David Armano points out in a recent article from the Harvard Business

Review, in 2009 we saw exponential growth of social media. According to Nielsen
Online, Twitter alone grew 1,382% year-over-year in February, registering a total of just more than 7 million
unique visitors in the US for the month. Meanwhile, Facebook continued to outpace MySpace
.
There is no question that we will continue to adapt and mold with the world of
social media and eat-up new technologies and more efficient applications that
are introduced to our daily lives.

While I’m a true fan of social media and you can find me on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn,
Ning,
commenting on videos on YouTube, uploading pictures to Ohio States O-H-I-O page (can
I get a “go Bucks”?), sometimes I’m taken back by how many conversations I can
juggle at one time. But is that a good thing? It’s not just tasks we’re
juggling anymore, folks, it’s conversations . . . all those balls in the air,
they have now officially multiplied. Did you respond to the most recent RT on
Twitter? What about that person who commented on your status on Facebook a few
days ago?

Those of you who know me well know
how much I value communication. I am a talker and I love to be in conversation
with others whether that’s via phone, social media outlets or in person. But
now, as I’m hashing all of these things out in my head maybe the real question
is — what is the “PC” way to handle communication via social media?

It’s a known fact that if someone
calls you and leaves a voicemail message, the courteous thing to do is to
return the call. If someone sends you an urgent email, you respond. But what is
the appropriate response to a RT or a status comment? Do they require a
response? If so, in what time frame am I required to respond before it’s
considered “too late”? And what topics are taboo? Some people are posting
topics they would never bring up at a cocktail party such as religion,
politics, personal hygiene and health issues.  Is this OK? Or can I
politely “unfollow” someone whose views disturb me in any way? Miss Manners
hasn’t written the book on online conversation etiquette. I write this to start
the discussion. I’m curious, what are your thoughts? Are there any set
standards for social media etiquette?

 

By Carrie Crabill

 

4 Comments
  • MogulMark on March 10, 2010

    One thing that is important to remember before responding is to know your audience and environment. On http://www.LinkedIn.com, you’re probably going to respond to nearly every comment that is made on a status or discussion that you’ve started because those are probably going to be in good taste and will foster good discussion or exchange of ideas. On http://www.Facebook.com, for me at least, I have more personal comments that I make and if professional people are following me, they probably know me and have worked with me and wont misinterpret any comments of candor that I make because they understand the context of how I deliver them. More than likely, I’ll respond, but sometimes it’s just not required. When conversation is going on in a room we don’t always barge in or support what each person involved in the conversation is saying. Sometimes we simply observe. Observation and reservation are just as important in communication just as speaking, texting, tweeting, or etc., appropriately. On http://www.Twitter.com, your conversation is dependent on your brand and how your followers perceive you. Unfollowing is tricky business… I can realize that someone is saying something I don’t like, but if they aren’t doing it consistently everytime I view them in my timeline, I can continue to follow them. No one is perfect and you won’t always like everything someone says. And if you do, chances are, they are only sticking to discussion that is relevant to a specific topic or cause that you support. The standards in social media are varying, just as the standards in society are. We all come from different backgrounds and cultures so it’s important to realize that when communicating and to remember the golden rule: Treat others like you want to be treated. That sums it up!

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