Netiquette Rules and Guidelines for Students

posted in: Scholarships | 40

For students, netiquette isn't just about having an enjoyable online experience. It affects your learning and grades.

  • Students use online forums to discuss courses, compare notes and form study groups.
  • Good online communication helps you and your classmates get better results.
  • Well mannered students are more likely to receive useful info from others.

By following sensible rules and guidelines, everybody benefits – you and those you communicate with.

  • Netiquette and internet ethics set you up to connect effectively with your online student community.
  • Through sharing, you'll learn how to navigate your course (staying on top of deadlines and technology, and understanding what's expected).
  • By seeing different perspectives, you'll also be better able to get on top of difficult subjects more quickly. Collective knowledge usually beats what you learn by yourself.
Online student who may or may not be following netiquette rules.

Enter the $2k for 200 Words Competition – Add to Our Knowledge Base

Join the discussion below – Leave a Reply – for the chance to win $2,000 (Australian) or a minor prize. The competition closes on 1 September 2017.

Just write something insightful and interesting about netiquette for students. Your comment (or response to a comment) must be 100-200 words.

The discussion will take the shape of a set of rules (guidelines) for participation in internet forums by university and college students. We are interested in your thoughts, experiences and/or recommendations about netiquette.

The basic rules are as follows.

  • A comment (or response to a comment) needs to be 100-200 words to be considered for a prize. Shorter or longer comments won't be considered (but may be kept in the discussion thread).
  • Maximum of 3 entries per person.
  • Prizes will be paid out by PayPal using the email account supplied when you entered.
  • We'll moderate your comment. It will generally be published within 24 hours. Occasionally, we may curate the discussion by deleting non-competitive entries.
  • If similar entries are submitted, we'll give preference to the 1st entry received. You have a better chance to win by entering early.
  • Shortlisted entries will be checked for plagiarism.

Writing tips

  • Your comment / guidelines / rules / story should be interesting, informative and/or entertaining.
  • Don't write until you've thought of something good.
  • As well as good content, it helps to write well. While your entry doesn't have to be a literary masterpiece, it should be grammatically correct and easy to read.
  • Use the first line for the title. We'll bold the title when approving the comment.
  • Include a blank line between paragraphs.

40 Responses

  1. Nuel
    | Reply

    Importance of Instructions

    Most times we always want to be the first in everything; first to log on, first to submit, first to get the prize, first to finish, first to comment, first to click and a whole range of some other first to-dos. In most cases however, being the first is not paramount; being the best at what you do is.

    Great netiquette involves not only understanding given instructions but also doing them as instructed – how to behave when in forums or how to interact in a live online class session, what to do at the appropriate times and many other things. These instructions are usually stated before anything. Instructions are always the first things in ensuring success at everything, especially for students.

    It is therefore advisable to ensure that every line of instruction is well read and understood before undertaking any task at all.

  2. Kay
    | Reply

    Research Before You Type

    Online education is the new normal. Just a few years ago, many people were skeptical of the value of online colleges. Slowly, people began to realize that this innovation opened many new channels for non-traditional students to obtain a reputable degree and to improve their prospective careers.

    To have the best online education experience, each student is responsible to learn how to effectively communicate in an online classroom. Each student should contribute ideas and welcome feedback from other students. Learn from each other, because every student adds value to the experience.

    Fearless expression, a passion to discover the truth, and a willingness to abandon old, comfortable ideas are important scholarly traits. After all, the goal of education is to improve by gaining knowledge, and not to remain exactly the same.

    Share your opinions, but research them first using professional, non-biased resources. Give people credit for their work. Investigate the opinions of others that differ from your own, and find ways to engage into meaningful discussions.

    Some people may believe netiquette is simply a choice to not be intentionally offensive while online. However, netiquette is also about developing a professional presence by finding a voice that inspires others to follow.

  3. Pinku. H. Thaliath
    | Reply

    Netizen rule no:1

    The internet is certainly a wonderful place to connect. But things tend to turn ugly when a netizen takes advantage of the fact that he is faceless on the internet. Being faceless has a lot of advantages. But hurting people thinking that that you can escape is the worst thing that one can do under the guise of anonymity that one enjoys on the internet. Think for one moment about all the wonderful things that you can use the internet for, from moaning your heart out on a ‘post’ (when you want feedback from people in the same ‘dreadful’ situation as you are) , to learning things you never knew about, from your countless online friends who are all queuing up just to help you, from god knows where not on the internet. Do you have the heart to play spoilsport and destroy all this by being mean. Or maybe you are just a blunderbuss when it comes to online conversations. Well I think, it pays to be extra courteous and polite when you are speaking to somebody who is faceless than when talking face to face in real life. That is netizen rule No: 1.

  4. Coralie
    | Reply

    Don’t be an e-jerk

    The internet can be a world of unique possibilities – endless hours of cat videos, the latest dank memes, how-to instructions for everything from origami cranes to building your own spaceship. For some people the internet, can be cruel and isolating. Following some basic netiquette guidelines means that we continue contributing to the cat-filled internet that we know and love, while making the online world safe and fun for everyone.

    Don’t be an e-jerk. You wouldn’t be rude in everyday conversations at home, at school or at work – so why change your shining personality when you’re online? Nettiquette is less about how to write the perfect corporate email or the perfect time to post on Instagram, and more about the common sense issues of respect, inclusiveness and kindness. When you’re online don’t engage with bully’s, keep encouraging diversity, always spellcheck and most importantly, use your common sense.

    Aretha Franklin said it best in 1969 with, R-E-S-P-E-C-T (sing that in your head, I dare you). If we value the feedback and opinions of others and spell things correctly, the internet would be a much better place for all students!

  5. Chris
    | Reply

    The Concept of Understanding

    Students throughout various levels of learning are often required to take part in online forums to engage in discussions with classmates. With access to these boards comes rules that everyone should look to abide by. In my experience, there’s one practice that could be exercised more often.

    Read to understand and not to respond. If you examine conversations that take place on any social media site or forum you choose to use, it’s apparent that a lot often gets lost in translation. What should be simple exchanges between two people turns into an argument due to a lack of clarification from either side. If you sense a misunderstanding, don’t hesitate to ask questions or explain your thoughts as clearly as possible.

  6. Liam Lambert
    | Reply

    Online Interactions Matter

    The internet is a great tool for unlocking education. I have had the pleasure of studying online courses, conducting discourse through online forums and talking with fellow classmates, across the globe. By working remotely, we remove our inhibitions, our thoughts are freer and we can truly grasp our education. As long as we use netiquette, the cyber equivalent of manners.

    With every new-found freedom, however, comes new found harms. The internet is permanent, your digital words are a record, in a permanent, unalterable ledger, forever bound to your online persona. Whilst the classroom is now ethereal, do not leave your manners and respect behind, your internet colleagues are just as real as ever. The loss of facial expression, body language, and interactions in one’s voice mean that communication is somewhat harder now. This means that arguments and debate require even greater attention than in face-to-face scenarios, avoid personal attacks, disrespecting other and ensure your etiquette and common courtesy are intact.

    Whilst understanding what makes for good netiquette is important, understanding how to deal with another’s poor etiquette is equally useful. As my father advised me, ‘never do anything online that you wouldn’t want your parents finding out about.’

  7. Kayla
    | Reply

    Treat Others as Equals

    I agree that we should be humble when making comments to others, but I don’t think we should consider them more superior than ourselves. We should treat that other person more so as an equal, such as a friend giving another friend advice out of love and care. There are some situations where that other person could be wrong, or don’t have full understand of something to realize that they are wrong. So if we nicely explain to them the issue and why it was inappropriate, then maybe they’ll have change of heart.

    When it comes to arguments, I do agree that the discussion should be stopped before things get out of hand and a bunch of hateful things are said. If we become too much involved in a discussion it will cause a lot of anger and hurtful comments from not only the person you are talking to, but others who may read it and get involved. It is best to get out of the situation before you hit that borderline of going way too far.

  8. Heather
    | Reply

    Just Be You

    Taking classes online changes how you interact with people. It’s not face to face like your everyday interactions. Take the time to read the posts by your fellow classmates. They have a lot of insight on the subject as well. Do not be rude or respond negatively if you do not agree with something they said.

    Always try to proof read what you write. I have had to learn this long before I started my online journey. Things are often read wrong. You lose the tone, and body language. Both are so important to communication. Without the tone of the person’s voice, you may read the post as if they are being rude. Remember that when typing your response.

  9. Raquel Whedbee
    | Reply

    Netiquette Guidelines

    Netiquette is being polite, poised, and intelligent over the Internet.

    When you are talking to another person online, you would want to address them by their names and reply to them in a kind manner. In everyday situations, is best to be polite if you would like to be treated well, and the same goes for talking to people over the Internet, (that means no rude insults to other users.) If you would not say it to someone out loud, do not type it for a stranger to see on the Internet. And do not post rude photos directed to others.

    Do not cyberbully.

    Moreover, be an informed person if you decide to comment on a subject matter on the Internet. When you comment on a webpage to start a discussion, make sure you understand what is being discussed. If you do not, then comment that you need some more clarification. Also, make sure to check for spelling and grammar errors. Trivial errors can downplay the credibility of your comment, just as slang can when one is speaking to someone.

    When communicating, speak, or rather type, with confidence, politeness, and clarity so that your netiquette is praised by others online.

  10. Marc Rodgers
    | Reply

    Netiquette for Students

    Electronic writing should not change from the human factor that people are the ones reading the messages via Email, Text, Blog, Tweets, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, or any other social media outlet utilized. The same rules should apply to face-to-face communication or during electronic communication where people should respect other opinions, thoughts, or ideas while being forgiving of mistakes. I live by the model that treating others as I want to be treated remains a critical aspiration of communicating between real people or while communicating electronically with respect being of utmost importance.

    I also believe that sharing information and knowledge intelligently will prompt others to communicate in the same fashion either in person or while writing electronically over the internet. Netiquette for students should state ideas, opinions, and thoughts in a clear format with the intent of staying polite and pleasant for the intended audience.

  11. Emily
    | Reply

    Think Twice

    Netiquette guidelines tend to be based around simply thinking about others. We have the chance to get so much work and study done online, and it seems such a shame to ruin it by upsetting or angering someone through our mistakes or bad manners.

    I would really recommend thinking twice about posting absolutely anything. A good rule of thumb is asking yourself: would I be happy to let my Nan see what I have written? If not, perhaps it is inappropriate, particularly in an academic context. I try to avoid writing negative responses at all; I would rather my view on a matter not be heard than post something that could be misconstrued. But if I have something critical to say, then I make sure that it sounds critical, but not downright negative.

    Also, a quick word about group discussions. I would definitely recommend establishing a set time for everyone to be on the forum to talk at once, instead of going on when they feel like it and having length delays between messages. Without everyone on together, you can power through your work and be really productive!

  12. Seppy Pour
    | Reply

    What does that E-mean?

    In a class delivered online, the majority of our interactions take place in the discussion forums provided by the course provider. As a result, our primary means of communication is almost entirely written. While written communication can provide a multitude of benefits such as greater opportunity for reasoned thought, more ability to go in-depth, and more time to think through an issue before posting a comment, written communication also has certain disadvantages. These primarily refers to the lack of face-to-face signalling that would otherwise occur through body language, pausing, hand gestures, and facial expressions.

    In spite of the aforementioned advantages, it is important to address the obvious shortcomings which accompanies an online platform.

  13. Amber Mendiola
    | Reply

    A Respectable E-Version of Yourself For a Successful E-Learning Experience

    Does anyone ever wonder why the tone in your voice suddenly changes when you answer a phone call? If I were answering a call from a cute guy, my voice would sound awkwardly high. If it was a call from my professor, I would sound so technical and proper. It’s as if we have this natural instinct to adapt to our surroundings or in this case, audience. How you present yourself really does determine whether a person takes your seriously or not.

    First impressions mean everything especially when working on group assignments in an online learning environment. It is important to present yourself in a manner in which others find appealing to work with. My point is not to “fake it till you make it” but rather to be a better version of yourself online. This means using proper grammar, responding in a timely fashion and being respectful of every one’s unique point of views. Professionalism and proper etiquette is how you succeed, not just online, but in any environment that requires you to communicate with others.

  14. Fiona Sharman
    | Reply

    A Perfect Stage For The Perfect Life

    The internet provides the perfect stage, or does it?

    Currently the internet is bombarded with Social media sites, where we can stay connected without actually having to connect.

    I stop and wonder how we all continue to miss the signs.
    If how we stay connected is flawed by the netiquette of social media, how will we catch the signs?

    Here is a platform where you can keep up to date with everyone’s fast paced lives. Where you can present your life however you want. Just hit the backspace on your negative post, no one will really know. Keep all your old colleagues and classmates envious of your life.

    He ‘seemed’ happy, a statement gathered purely from his post on Facebook last week about a night out with the boys. She had it all, a statement gathered from her Instagram where she showed off her new car, house and job. So, how did we miss the signs?

    Netiquette, is staying positive.
    Netiquette, is bottling it up.
    Netiquette, is blinding us.
    Netiquette, facilitates suicide.

  15. Imukusi Mutanekelwa
    | Reply

    Socially acceptable behavior on the Net

    At times you see inappropriate language use on the internet when an individual gathers ‘false’ courage because of the usual lack of face to face interaction. I have learnt to appreciate and value netiquette. My e-learning experience has been exciting thou challenging because of the lack of face to face interaction which I get to miss. There was the initial deception that in the online learning environment you are alone; I had to ‘swim’ (and learn netiquette to help me connect with others) or ‘sink’.

    My current online learning environment involves applying learning material to the workplace and most importantly learning from other student professionals’ experiences in an online collaboration platform. I have never really gotten used to social interactions on Facebook, but with the online learning, I have been ‘forced’ to learn and still learning how to interact, promote conversations to drive learning or even ask another classmate to explain a difficult concept, etc. But should netiquette be reserved only for educational purposes? Not necessarily because it’s applicable almost everywhere be it social media, health (telemedicine), Law (telelaw), telemarketing and advertisement, even right now, etc.
    Overall, netiquette does more good than harm.

  16. Tiffeney Poynter
    | Reply

    Netiquette For Students: When Sharing Isn’t Caring

    Beginning with early childhood, parents and educators alike have purposed to instill the concept of sharing. Children are taught to share their toys, adolescents are taught to share their personal space, young adults are encouraged to share their thoughts, and adults are taught to share their feelings. Sharing is often thought to be an act of courtesy. In a sense, sharing is caring. However, there are instances in which sharing is not caring, especially where internet and social media are concerned.

    There are rules for everything, including internet activity. These rules are conveyed in what we call internet etiquette, or netiquette. Thankfully, netiquette includes a list of do’s and don’ts to guide you in your internet sharing. The first thing to consider when sharing online is your audience. Understanding your target audience will help you identify who you are sharing with, as well as help to determine what is appropriate to share. For instance, you wouldn’t share your hunting photos within an animal cruelty activist group. Conversely, you wouldn’t share your sausage meatloaf recipe in a vegan cooking group. Though your photos and recipes may be amazing to you, others may find these things offensive.

    While knowing your audience and what to share are insightful tips, the timing of your sharing is equally important. Someone once said that there is a time and a place for everything. This is true in the online world as well. Sharing helpful information at just the right time can have an amazing impact on your audience. If the tone or topic in your online forum is one of sadness or sorrow, you would be wise to share positive thoughts of hope, love, peace, or encouragement. If the cyber world your are addressing is in celebration, it may not be the time to share recent death toll statistics.

    Lastly, let’s address a more serious component of netiquette, which is the how. We have already addressed the who, when, and what, but the how is a pivotal sticking point. How to share online information is not just an issue of tact, rather it is also an issue of integrity. When sharing images, thoughts, or articles of writing online or otherwise, be sure to present authentic work free from plagiarism. Always obtain written permission to use the work of others, and do not neglect to give credit where credit is due. Doing so will preserve your integrity and protect the work, copyrights, and privacy of others. These are words to live by in the online world and make sharing caring once again, thanks to netiquette.

  17. Samia Brown
    | Reply

    Clean and Simple

    Netiquette. What is netiquette? The webster defines it as the “correct or acceptable way of communicating on the internet.” Apparently, communication which is the first thing we, as newborns, learn also extends to social media. Not only are their societal norms and regulations we must follow but these also extend to those of other cultures, backgrounds and experiences. What may be ’normal’ to us may be completely foreign to others, and vice versa.

    So how exactly does one go about this? Well, simplicity, for one. It may seem childish but communicating or exchanging thoughts on a simpler level is most effective. When we tend to over (or under) explain, or even leave open statements, the other person may read too much into the statement, causing disagreements, anger and frustrations. One of the best ways to ensure a message is interpreted as intended is to watch word composition. This can entail things as little as proper punctuation and grammar: restricting the use of excessive exclamation marks or run-un sentences and most importantly, using capital letters. On a universal level, it may be assumed that using CAPITAL LETTERS signifies annoyance or the use of louder voices instead of enthusiasm. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to properly communicate when not in person.

    In person it’s easier to understand what emotions someone is using, whether it be the expression on their face, use of hands, tone and pitch of voice, or the look in their eyes. Unfortunately, this ability does not extend to the internet. So, in order to get the same message across, we are limited in our communication. However, keeping it simple is the best solution: proper language (no use of curse words), punctuation, grammar, and straight forwardness can help maintain effective communication.

  18. Joshua Hunter
    | Reply

    Take Care with Your Diverse Audience

    The internet has grown in capacity over the years, and with that also has become the main venue for communication for people of all nationalities and backgrounds. Because of this amazing ability to reach out to people across the world, etiquette, or more appropriately, netiquette should be exercised with more caution than in local interaction at school or in the workplace. This will help smooth out ethnic boundaries on social media and discussion forums more easily.

    Mainly, interpersonal communication, executed properly across the web can ease tensions and make it easier for thoughts to be conveyed. Imagine how an argument or disagreement on some subject could change dramatically with just one word that may or may not be taken in the context that you meant it. Possibly, most heated arguments can be stifled and changed direction, and a positive outcome can result from careful consideration of how we each speak to one another.

  19. Akshay Baraik
    | Reply

    Be Humble

    Humility through texts is a very important way to display our interests in other person’s comment. It’s very important that we are warm and considerate when we interact in forums.

    The opinions may differ about the topic, but let not the respect for other person differ. When we interact online, it’s important that we give more importance to another person, look at that person as superior one and ourselves as inferior ones. And when it comes to arguments, it’s better and stop and be warm than to fight and quarrel. It not only harms those who get in a fight, but it harms those who listen to it as well.

  20. Harold Tapia
    | Reply

    To Defriend Or Not Defriend, That Is The Question

    One of the earliest decisions I made on my social media was not to discuss religion or politics with anybody. I felt that these two subjects could sometimes bring out the ugly side of people. I had experience back in their MySpace. Then came last year’s presidential election. I convinced myself to reach out to a family member and have a friendly, but serious adult conversation. That didn’t take too long after for them to give up their disrespectful ways that they talked to me. I reminded myself not to allow them to pull me in.

  21. Kak Timbas
    | Reply

    Social Media Communication

    It is of the best, easiest and effective way to communicate when it comes to discussing a topic of interest that is right now going viral in the school ground. Students often create forum groups and discuss sub topic on the topic. It’s like talking to other people just on the palm of your hands as with current technology age, people access internet everywhere they go.

    Does that sound crazy taking to many people at different locations at the same time? Off course, however it is just like taking a walk around the school campus and meeting your school mates and discussing the topic that was discussed in the classed today.

    So, like understanding communication in everyday living, there are certain communication skills that one must use to understand the message that will be passed from one person to the other.

    Similarly, in social media communication, whatever words that you use; must be first understood by yourself before using it as it will surely reflect yourself as who and what type of person you are, because real people will see whatever you post on the social media and they can make a fair judgement on your personalities.

  22. Abiodun Oluwasola Adebiyi
    | Reply

    Cyberspace Interactions

    When one is online, Netiquette is the etiquette or good manners that one observes in cyberspace. It is a set of rules that people who are online have to follow. In cyberspace we don’t meet people face to face and so new users may not know how to conduct themselves properly when interacting with others. This may give rise to mistakes and misunderstandings.

    People who are online should remember that they are interacting with real people. They should not say things which offend others. Some people, emboldened by the fact that they are not speaking face to face, may say things that hurt the other person. This is not a good netiquette. One should Know where he or she is in cyber space’. By this that one should employ discretion in online interactions by adjusting our responses or behavior according to the kind of people we happen to be interacting with.

    One should underscore the fact that cyberspace is not a lawless territory where one can do anything. It comes with its own code of behavior and netizens have a responsibility to uphold it.

  23. Farzan Bashir
    | Reply

    The “Hard” Human Skill

    We live in an era in which the development of interpersonal skills is thought of as a task beyond the cognitive horizons of a common man. Humans pay humans, to train humans in the arts which should come as natural to anyone born Human.

    Despite all this, here we are in the Cyber World where the feeling of being physically absent makes most of us all mighty in discussing ‘Anything’ about ‘Anyone’ in ‘Anyway’. The problem is not what is being written, the problem is what is being portrayed to the outside world. Translating your anger in the form of a social media post may seem innocuous at first. But the fact that it reaches millions around the globe is where this little post becomes an overall ambassador of the general mannerism in your country or religion.

    Keeping all this in account one must exhibit the “Normal Human” behavior to all his dealings on the social media. This apparently difficult task simply translates to treating others the way you want to be treated. Once this “Hard Part” is accomplished, our world will be a better place to live.

  24. Sharon
    | Reply

    Stick to Objectives

    Many times people comment or post what they feel they want to share. However they end up posting things irrelevant to the purpose of discussion in search of wanting response from people or other times getting rid of their boredom.

    It is time that as students we become original and innovative and always having new ways and different ways of doing things. We should not just forward already existing stories but should strive to reason and create new things.

    In addition we should always strive to learn new things, spend time to think and talk less. If and when given an opportunity to have a platform or sharing ideas it is vital that the most is made out of that chance so that all benefit and are eager to inform others so that even those people who do not have access to internet or technology can learn and appreciate the use of having a platform like this.

  25. Oliver Odhiambo Owuor
    | Reply

    Respect and Courtesy

    When communicating online, whether by way of group discussions or individual correspondence initiatives, it is a fundamental rule that one must write concisely and in a courteous manner. Recipients of our communication online often judge our character and attitude by the manner in which we communicate.

    It is not only important to ensure the language is cordial and courteous, but it is also critical to consider that simplicity in the approach will often lead to an easier and fruitful engagement. The more jargon and uncultured language we use, the more likely the recipient of our communication will not likely identify with our efforts to reach out to them.

    Simplicity in the way we communicate is important because it helps us process responses in a timely fashion, coupled with the resultant nurturing of a relationship with the recipient, whether business or social-oriented.

    Online communication also requires that we respond in a timely manner, and make an attempt to stay in touch with our recipients as would be convenient for both parties involved.

    But above all, online communication must embody a sense of respect and must take cognizance of human dignity. No matter whom we are communicating with, we must assume they deserve the respect and courtesy that every human being deserves.

  26. agnes wong soon
    | Reply

    Netiquette for Students

    As students, we are bound to ask questions and be involved with discussions in order to understand anything. It is up to us whether we keep it simple and interesting. The most important part of any discussion is keeping it simple and straight to the point. There are no guidelines for being anonymous but as learners, students or educated individuals, we have to be clear and deliver the message as we are taught or preferred to be taught that way. Be mindful of others and respect cultural backgrounds, status as human beings, but if these details are not provided, then focus on the subject. The rules to make exchanges on the net are not set or precise other than being humans; you are not to disrespect another individual by insulting their opinions or answers.

    We as students are to be vigilant and stick to the point. If the subject does not apply to you, then it is better to leave it to the experienced and experts of the topic in the discussion, rather than dropping useless comments that won’t help anyone and waste of space and time of others reading it. Support and help others with respect.

  27. Ashley
    | Reply

    Think Before You Speak

    In a society where we can post our every thought and communicate with a series of acronyms and emoticons, it is easy to see how communication standards can quickly evolve. In an academic setting however, the accuracy of your communication is much more important. In an online setting, we don’t have the conveniences provided by in-person interaction such as non-verbal communication, inflection, tone, etc. For this reason, careless messages can quickly translate the wrong way.

    Keep your responses brief, discarding unnecessary information that can create confusion. Do your best to understand and decode what others intend to say, taking culture and life experience into consideration. Ask probing questions for clarity, avoid making assumptions or jumping to conclusions and use plain, simple English when speaking.

    If you disagree with someone, think “how can I express my disagreement without being disrespectful or antagonistic?”

    Being able to respectfully disagree, share ideas and information and communicate with a variety of people is a valuable life skill to develop and maintain. As a communications major, I am just beginning to unravel the complexities of human communication, but when it comes to Netiquette, it all boils down to thinking before you speak.

  28. Jill
    | Reply

    Pros and Cons of Anonymity

    I strongly believe that one of the internet’s greatest assets, its sense of anonymity, plays a parallel role as its greatest pitfall.

    It is this sense of anonymity that can: connect people based on intellectual compatibility; foster discussion about a range of niche issues (such as physical and mental health problems with attached stigma) that online users often fear speaking about in ‘real life’; and provide individuals with a platform for speaking that is not undermined by subsidiary factors such as age or appearance.

    In spite of these positives, this same sense of online anonymity is what distances users from their cyber counterparts, and has in turn stimulated the advent of cyber bullying. Additionally, perceived anonymity is a crucial factor in many instances of online ethical violations, such as academic misconduct.

    Although this is a fairly complex issue, let’s not be afraid of the internet – take advantage of its many opportunities! Just as in real life, it is vital that we are aware of traps that await us, and maintain a sense of self-integrity. It’s our prerogative to exhibit the kind of behaviour that we value in others – let’s prove we’re up to the task.

  29. Jeremy Marroquin
    | Reply

    Write Like You’d Speak

    When writing on the net, I think you should always try to be more like yourself. Recognize you are actually speaking with another person, instead of writing. This will help the flow of your conversation and it will seem natural. If you try to force it your message may come across as shrewd or too formal. Also remember who you are speaking to as to this will give a better idea of how and what you will say. And before pressing that post or send button, read aloud what you are writing so you can determine of how the person reading it may feel, react, or respond to your message.

  30. Lisa l Pilling
    | Reply


    When “talking” to people online speaking (writing) should be done as if you were face to face. In today’s world of social media, text messaging, and other internet use, because there is no face to see, people don’t always put their best foot forward. In many cases this can come back to haunt them in the future. For example, in job interviews your behavior in online forums may be seen by the prospective employer. If you have not used proper etiquette you may be passed over for a position.

    In the case of online students, netiquette is even more important. Using netiquette helps to make people know that you are serious about your studies and that you respect them and value their point of view even if you disagree. Respect and tolerance are the basis of etiquette, rather online or face to face.

  31. Karen
    | Reply

    Etiquette on the Net

    It is always important to have etiquette whether it be at home, school, work or even online. Being courteous and polite is like a magnet that attracts others even though what we are saying may not be truth or what they may agree upon. However just being mannerly gives them the impetus to lend a listening ear.

    We should be taught to respect others views and opinions while not necessarily agreeing with them, in the same way we would want others to respect our views and opinions. Freedom and Democracy should be promoted over the internet especially in forums where discussions are generated for educational purposes. People should be mature and courteous enough to share their views in a respectable manner without at the same time infringing others rights to freedom of expression online.

  32. Joseph Quiambao
    | Reply

    Discussion and Not Exposition

    I am a student of University of the Philippines Open University since 2014 and one thing I have learned as a student which is very valuable when it comes to discussion forums is to engage and stimulate discussion rather than exposition.

    There is nothing wrong to commend other’s point of view as well as pointing out your own point of view or disagreement by asking proper questions to elicit valuable discussion rather than opposing one’s view point. A healthy discourse does not have to end in a debate, bashing, or trolling which is commonly visible in social media nowadays.

    A culture of academic honesty as well as tolerance and acceptance should be the atmosphere promoted in any form of internet forum. At the end of the day, we gain valuable knowledge, insights, thoughts and novel ideas from each other’s perspective. And in an online world where it is active 24/7, discussion and not exposition of what is right and not can guide netizens to proper communication if we ask and respond to the right questions.

  33. Catherine Lockley
    | Reply


    Author Stephen Pinker tells us that the word “courtesy” comes from the first known etiquette handbooks -those written to teach Knights & Nobles how to conduct themselves in the court of the King. Now, in the vast and ever expanding kingdom of the World Wide Web, the size of our audience has grown but the basic premise of “courtesy” should always remain: Think of the feelings of others first.

    Despite our use of the internet as a personal tool, it’s not all about slavishly maximising your personal convenience.

    All the classic, old-fashioned rules your Grandmother insisted upon still apply.

    In order to avoid breaches of ‘netiquette’, remember: Know the language well. Use language with skill. Urgency and laziness in typing or formulating communications is still plain old bad manners, and polite conversation is impossible with an inebriate :-).

    Pinker, S (2007). The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature. New York, NY. Viking.

  34. Katie Marie Lawles
    | Reply

    Yeah Right!

    Netiquette is an ill-defined set of rules, mostly based on common sense, that attempt to make online communication clear and effective. We know good netiquette when we read it, and very poor netiquette can be blatantly obvious, but on occasion it can be hard to identify why some online conversations descend into piles of useless text that fail to convey any meaningful information.

    Of course, in an academic environment, discourse should always be respectful and courteous. However textual communication has a few more traps for the inexperienced.

    Much of our verbal discourse includes cues that do not translate well into text, such as the tone of voice used to indicate sarcasm, the shoulder shrug indicating a lack of certainty in a statement, or a declarative sentence turned into a question with an uplift in tone at the end.

    The easiest way to avoid these potential pitfalls is to use more specific language in text, for example: explaining fully the intent of a sentence, adding explicit qualifying language to indicate the level of certainty the writer has in their statement, and avoiding sarcasm at all times.

  35. Jen H
    | Reply

    Keep it Simple

    The sage advice of KISS (Keep it simple stupid) is applicable to both physical and online interactions and projects. Questions, statements and comments are best simplified as they are consequently easy to follow and understand. Visual cues and inflection are obviously absent in online conversations therefore one must be careful when constructing a response or posing a question. With large paragraphs or complex responses or ideas the possibility of miscommunication increases substantially.

    Certain statements can be misinterpreted when typed and without clarity a query can be misunderstood. If a question is misconstrued and communication isn’t concise or clear the student may not receive a correct or useful answer.

    In conclusion it is important to remember that online interaction doesn’t have the subtle or sometimes overt nuances associated with physical intercommunication so when you suspect a miscommunication don’t be afraid to clarify or question phrases you are unsure about.

  36. Fathiyah
    | Reply

    Don’t be Cruel

    An online student plagiarized his response for the course weekly discussion from a website. Some students think that they should check the response of every student for plagiarism and they caught this poor guy, of course. Three students put harsh comments under his entry. I’ll not write their long and harsh comments; I’ll just mention one sentence of what they posted. One student wrote: you plagiarized this from a website. Other student wrote: don’t do it again. A third student wrote: how could you do that.

    I think, even when someone commits plagiarism, your response to such act reveal a lot about your character. When someone does a mistake, still you have to respond in a civilized way.

    From that moment, I didn’t interact with those three students even when they post good comments under my entries. I was terrified from their cruelty toward that guy.

  37. Jo Madron
    | Reply

    Netiquette for Students

    When you are on social media, it is a good idea to always govern yourself. There are things that you should refrain from stating, showing or depicting.

    If you are using any social media, you do not know who could be reading your posts. All schools that I know of have a code of conduct. You do not want to put yourself in the position of showing your school in a bad light. When you are on Facebook or Twitter or some other social media site, you want to represent your school and yourself in a positive manner.

    A student may not think of the consequences when venting on the campus forum about a professor. Should that professor, other students, or faculty, see any slanderous remarks or charges of inappropriateness. there could be serious consequences on both sides of the fence. Also, the student, not thinking about expulsion, may ask, on social media, someone to blow off classes to go party.

    Many people have been fired due to their inability to consider the consequences of stating something on social media that was inappropriate. I can only assume that academic institutions would have severe disciplinary action as well.

  38. cielo contrano
    | Reply

    Netiquette for Student Athletes

    Netiquette for students is important. It’s especially important for a student athletes who is trying to earn an athletic scholarship. Social media is a powerful tool for any individual. Saying the wrong stuff online can get you in trouble. For a student athlete who is trying to earn an athletic scholarship or already has an athletic scholarship can lose that opportunity if they were to say the wrong things online. That school will take away their offers if a student was making a bad name for themselves on the internet. Colleges wouldn’t want to offer a scholarship to a student who would give their school a bad reputation because that student was disrespectful on social media. A student who is given such an opportunity should be aware of the things they say on social media that can lead them to losing such an opportunity such as a scholarship. Students should remain classy and respectful online and keep all the negative comments to themselves. Being respectful in the real world is something that must be done, why not do it online as well.

  39. Callie Bulkley
    | Reply

    Use Normal Writing Conventions

    In academic forums and message boards that are used for organization communication it is important to use a pattern of speech and thought process that is clear and congenial. All too often we fall into a pattern of using slang and acronyms that can be considered immature or unprofessional and our intended message gets lost in context when the reader is forced to guess what is meant by “OMG ROFLMAO IDK how I messed up that project. I thought I did GR8 but IRL I totally messed up.” Punctuation is also an important factor when posting in a public forum. There is a huge difference in meaning between “I ran over John when I heard the news” and “I ran over, John, when I heard the news.”

  40. Roger
    | Reply

    Being Available

    Internet forums work best when people are available and responsive. If someone makes a comment which gets lots of replies, it’s important to have follow up from that person. If you never hear from the commenter again, the thread loses something. It’s like a bunch of random thoughts.

    The most interesting and informative threads are more of a discussion, where people are learning and gaining a better understanding through the interactions. The simple rule would be to check in on forums where you leave posts or comments. I check in with social media at least once a day. If anyone has added something to a discussion I was involved in, I try to give positive feedback (if deserved).

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