The following is a crime scene; there are 5 dead manners below. The chief suspect: social media and its greatest accomplice, Facebook.
Growing up, my mom was a stickler for manners and they have served me well. I know I slip up all the time, sorry mom, but for the most part I try and when I think about how some of my face-to-face manners need some reminding at times, it leaves me thinking about my manners online as well.
The bottom line is most people’s manners online suck. But, it may not be their fault. The expectations are so drastically different than they are in person, that certain practices which are pretty rude when you think about it are just the way things are online now.
- RSVP-ing Practices – My friend actually put a great article up on my wall because I am so bad about this one myself. Facebook makes it so easy to reply to event invitations that everyone either replies yes, with no intention of going, or replies ‘maybe’ and never decides one way or the other in a courteous amount of time. You would never dream of telling someone in person that will show and then not without even a word, but in the world of social media and Facebook, it’s apparently fine.
- Conversation Etiquette – When did it become OK to totally bail on a conversation without even saying goodbye? This happens to me all the time in chats and I do it too, but imagine it in real life; You are talking to a friend then all of sudden they turn around and dip out on you without saying anything. Crazy right? IM clients destroyed this one a long time ago and I don’t even get offended anymore, it’s just how it is.
- Timely Responses – With Facebook messages and messages on other social networks it seems fine to take a really long time to respond. Lengths of time that wouldn’t even be acceptable by email standards which are pretty relaxed. Perhaps it’s because messages from your social network are assigned a lower level of priority because of the close relationships you have with those people? Do you feel email is more urgent? Either way, I know I sometimes forget about Facebook messages for weeks and friends do the same to me.
- Birthday Etiquette – Sure, Facebook makes you feel like a better person because you forget a lot less birthdays thanks to that handy little birthday widget in events, but it has killed the birthday visit and even the phone call. Post a quick ‘HB’ on the wall and that’s good? Seems like you should still at least get a call these days…a text even…please?
- Bragging – Ok it’s a given that the whole nature of social media makes us a tiny bit more self-promoting and maybe narcissistic when it comes to our profiles, but come on, sometimes I feel surrounded by Ochocinco’s and Muhammed Ali’s. People love to brag on their pages, to a point that it would be obnoxious in person. Aren’t we supposed to be talking to each other, not about ourselves?
Well, that’s a list of only five, I know there are more out there so please share them with us. What manners have gone by the way side thanks to Facebook and the rest that you really miss? Maybe people not being responsible for getting their own phone numbers back after they lose a phone…or people yelling all the time via over use of exclamation points perhaps? Let us know. (!)