Internet Netiquette

By: Angela Duve

Internet Netiquette

A philosophy of effective internet communication that utilizes common conventions and norms as a guide for rules and standards.

Rules of Netiquette

We expect other drivers to observe the rules of the road. The same is true as we travel through cyberspace. That's where netiquette, a term allegedly coined from either network etiquette or Internet etiquette comes in handy. To guide you through your online communications, keep these pointers in mind:
  • 1.Avoid writing e-mail or posting messages in blogs, newsgroups, forums, chat rooms and other online venues using all capital letters. IT LOOKS LIKE YOU'RE SHOUTING! Not only that, it's difficult to read.
  • 2.When you talk with someone, the tone and inflections of your voice convey great meaning.
  • 3.Keep your written communications focused.
  • 4.To shorten messages, use common abbreviations.
  • 5.Remember that comments you post to a blog, newsgroup, forum or website and write during a public chat session is a publicly available.
  • 6.Stick to the topic when posting a message.
  • 7.When sending e-mail, make sure that the subject line accurately describes what the message is about.
  • 8.If you post a commercial message or send it as an e-mail, clearly identify it in the subject line.
  • 9.FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) are handy documents to read before asking questions.
  • 10.Electronic communications may seem ephemeral, but when you hit the Delete key, they don't go away.


In general, Netiquette makes online communication go more smoothly. Netiquette helps keep people polite and regulate online communication. If everyone used Netiquette, you would probably never receive those annoying forwards claiming “if you don’t send this message to everyone in your address book right now, you will die tomorrow” or those long block messages.
So remember, next time you send an email, instant message or text message, ask yourself “Am I using proper netiquette?” I’m sure your friends, coworkers, and family will all appreciate that you do.