I haven’t posted in awhile, so here is something different, just for fun.
Facebook/Twitter 13 Rules of Engagement:
Etiquette for a New Era
1. Do not complain about drivers on the road.
A) Nobody feels sorry for you. The same thing just happened to them. B) This is not noteworthy, interesting, exciting, or worthy of sympathy. C) While this is a more technologically sophisticated method of shouting at other drivers, the impact is the exact same—they still cannot hear you! D) You should not be status-updating while driving anyway.
2. Do not talk about your cold, your allergies, or other petty illnesses (see A and B above.)
3. Do call (yes, with a telephone) your relatives and close friends or tell them in person when possible if you have important news.
Grandma should not find out about your cancer or your pregnancy or your job promotion via facebook.
4. Do not begin a post with the phrase, “That awkward moment when,” or other over-used phrases that stopped sounding clever last year.
5. Do send real birthday cards (on time) in the mail to the people who matter most to you.
Whatever means technology provides you, nothing says happy birthday like a card that you had to remember on your own to send.
6. Do not gripe mysteriously about the unnamed person who just wronged you in order to garner vague sympathy from people who do not know you and was-it-me-angst from the people who do.
7. Do use proper punctuation.
8. Do not post a comment on social media that you would not say to someone face-to-face. Just don’t. Ever.
It is no less embarrassing to put your foot in your mouth via the internet. In fact, it is arguably more embarrassing since the audience is wider and everything you say has an afterlife. At least, we are all embarrassed for you, which is awkward.
9. Do try using complete sentences from time to time.
Like writing in cursive, it is good to see if you can still do it every now and again.
10. Do not post endless pictures of your child donned in your favorite sports team’s attire.
Hint: This is neither cute nor original.
11. Do find your self-worth outside of likes, retweets, and friend/follower counts.
12. Do not be persuaded that just because you can have your personal thoughts published at any time, your thoughts are, in fact, publish-worthy.
You are decidedly not an expert on most of what is being discussed, so do not pretend to be just because you can get away it. There are plenty of other readers learned enough to correct you, but they are too polite, too annoyed, or too bored to do so.
13. And for the love of God, keep your political rants to yourself, whatever your flavor.
If you want to open up dialogue on an important topic, then create a dialogue. You must not have noticed: monologues of mockery persuade everyone on the other side to stand their ground even stronger, so you are shooting yourself in the foot, even if it does feel good to release some steam.
So, what would you add as Rule of Engagement #14?