The term “netiquette” may be unfamiliar to most, but in fact it comes naturally to most of us whether you’re familiar with it or not. Just as there is a standard of social etiquette in all forms of face-to-face interaction, so there is a standard etiquette in online interaction. This “netiquette” varies from site to site, but the same best practices can generally be applied wherever you are online.

  1. Wait until you have a feel for the online community to begin posting

Don’t rush into it, take your time and see what other people are posting, focusing on what topics they post about and the netiquette of their posts.

2. Stay on topic

Simply put, nobody on a gaming forum is looking for tips on how to make the best brownie, so stay on topic.

3. Use clarity in writing

Written communication is different from verbal; if your words are misunderstood you can’t quickly rephrase them in a matter of seconds. Likewise, if your words are misunderstood, feedback doesn’t come as quickly online as it does in person. Therefore, it’s best to ensure clarity in your wording before you post.

4. DO NOT PLAGIARISE

It’s fine to use someone else’s ideas as long as you cite them, else you can invoke legal action upon yourself and/or the site you posted to.

These are some basic dos and don’ts to online etiquette, or “netiquette”. As long as you follow these four simple points, you should be without issue. You will find though, that your understanding of netiquette comes to you pretty naturally in this digitally focused generation, so don’t be nervous entering into the ever-expanding online world.