The year has gone fast and now it has come to its end.
As we bid goodbye to 2018 and say hello to 2019, it is but necessary to be reminded of the different social media etiquettes. These social media etiquette tips can help us be more responsible in social media use.
As we say hello to the year ahead, let’s include this in our New Year’s Resolution. Being a responsible social media user can impact you, your online friends and the virtual community in a positive way.
In this blog, we will discuss about different social media etiquette that you can practice for a more fruitful and productive 2019. We will also discuss the importance of these social media etiquettes.
Why is it Important to be a Responsible Social Media User?
With the exploding use of social media now, it is hard to imagine that it barely existed 10 years ago. People from all age groups are all hooked to social media use, with most them having multiple social media accounts.
But as the use of social media increases, some issues arise as well – including the irresponsible use of social media.
A careless post can easily go viral and can be shared by a lot of people in the internet harming either the reputation of the one who posted it or the subject of the post.
If you are someone who regularly uses social media, then it pays to exercise proper etiquette, so you won’t suffer from unfortunate social media backlashes in the future.
Social Media Etiquette Tips
1. Have a Separate Account for your Personal and Business Use
Some jobs would require you to have a social media account. However, you wouldn’t want your clients to see you in your bikini or enjoying drinks at a bar because it’s just not so professional looking.
Therefore, it would be healthy to have a separate account for business and another account for your personal posts.
Maintain your professional image in your business account while still living your life to the fullest and sharing it to the world through your personal social media account.
2. Be Mindful when Tagging Photos
When we take group photos, we are usually just mindful of how we look in it but not about how the others look. We tend to tag them despite their unflattering appearance. It is something that they might not appreciate.
When tagging photos in social media accounts, it would be best to ask permission from your friends or better yet just post the picture and put a caption “Tag Yourself.” This way, it will be their decision whether to have a copy of that photo or not.
You can also just send it in a group chat and let everyone choose what they want to post.
Remember, you wouldn’t want to be in the same awkward situation. You wouldn’t want your friend s to see an unflattering tagged photo of yours. Therefore, it would pay to practice doing the same.
3. Don’t be too Self-Centered
Do not be fooled by the notion that your social media account is your own and you have all the right to post anything you want in it. Remember that your social media account still belongs to a bigger online community, therefore, your freedom is not absolute.
Understand that people are not always giddy about you, your selfies and your life. So, don’t be too self-centered. Don’t post too much stuff on your account about you. Don’t post your selfies every hour. That can be too annoying.
Do not rant about people or things always. This can bring negative energy in your account and your friends’ account as well. It’s okay to rant once in a while, but if it’s becoming too often already, take a step back.
4. Understand That not Everyone Will Like Your Humor
Understand that you have a diverse set of friends in your social media account. Some of your jokes might be funny to others but can be offensive to the rest.
It would be imperative that before you post or say something, consider these questions first – Will it hurt anyone? Will it offend anyone? If the answer is no, then go ahead.
But if you feel like some of your friends will be offended, then better keep it to your self or share the joke privately. This can be particularly true for jokes on sensitive topic like gender, religion and political views.
5. Avoid Arguments
Just because you are not physically arguing, doesn’t mean there are less consequences. Online arguments can start when you would personally respond to a political post or if you call out someone. You can engage in an online battle and find yourself stressed afterwards.
If there’s one thing you should be aware of, it’s that, the result of most social media arguments is not constructive. So, don’t fret or be frustrated if you don’t get positive results with your online dispute.
6. Do not Over-Share
If posting too much selfies can be annoying, oversharing about things that you do can be very annoying as well.
As social media accounts serve as a mode of self-expression, some things are not necessary to share. You don’t have to post every hour telling your friends what you’re doing, what food you’re having every meal or every little thing that’s happening in your life.
Your social media account is not your diary. And if in case it is your diary, remember that diaries are for you to keep and not for you to share to everyone.
Little doses can be okay, but too much of anything is not good.
7. Don’t Pretend Someone You’re Not
Don’t feel too much pressure about all the good things you see in your friends’ social media accounts. This might cause you to have some insecurities and would prompt you to misrepresent yourself.
Try to be as true as possible. Do not pretend to be someone you’re not. Live your life within your means and be appreciative of what you currently have.
You don’t have to compete with what others have or what others have experienced. Resonate the uniqueness of your life than mirror someone else’s.
Another instance is when you create a fake profile account and use it to deceive others. This is not just uncalled for, this is illegal. Do not hide in anonymity to hurt or deceive other people.
8. Don’t Drink and Post
Alcohol can get into your head and it might lead you to post some things you don’t mean or things you don’t want other people to see.
Similar to the famous reminder, “Don’t Drink and Drive,” exercise caution when you feel like you are not in your right mind. You might regret what you posted afterwards.
But remember, it’s already out there and the damage has been done. Sometimes, even damage control can not make things the same as they were.
9. Control Your Privacy Settings
Some posts might not be for your certain friends or you might want to share information to certain group of friends only. In this case, it would be best to control your privacy settings.
Information has been a gold mine in the online world with advertisers and businesses trying to get as much as they can. Check your privacy settings and share only those that are necessary.
10. Be a Responsible Citizen Journalist
The use of social media has paved way to a broader opportunity for citizen to participate in news gathering. However, this also gave rise to issues on ethics.
If you are in a scene where an accident happened (and the victim’s body is gore), you might feel the urge to take photos and share it in your social media account. Do know that this is unethical. Journalism ethics tells us to blur or do creative shots of gore images. This is to protect the victim and the victim’s family. You wouldn’t want to know what happened to your loved one through a social media post right?
Contribute responsibly. Journalism rules apply even to citizen journalists.
The rapid increase of the use of social media brings with it immense power and opportunities. When used properly and responsibly, social media can break barriers, bridge gaps and become a viable tool for change.
However, if social media will not be used in the proper way, it can have adverse effects – more barriers will be created, gaps can widen, and change cannot happen.
As social media users, given the power and the opportunity to use these platforms, it would help to practice the proper social media etiquette to ensure that we can harness its potentials.
This 2019, we can be guided about the different social media etiquettes. IF you feel like you’ve been doing some of those mentioned above, then it’s not too late to change.
The New Year presents exciting opportunities to change. So, start your year right! Be thankful of all the good things this 2018 and start 2019 with a renewed heart and a better perspective.
Let’s all welcome 2019 with a bang! From all of us here in Rocket Social, we wish you a Happy New Year!