Sunday, December 22, 2013

Would Ralph Waldo Emerson Cringe At Your Twitter Feed? Or your email?

The article below was recently posted. It refers to Twitter Netiquette. However the rules outlined also can be for email and texting. I thought it would be appropriate to show it again to highlight that even short messages  have Netiquette practices. It is hard to try to maintain certain types of Netiquette working with small devices or character limitations but it can, and should, be done as best as possible. This will always serve to the best interest of the sender and be appreciated by the recipient.


 A 3 Step Guide to Twitter Etiquette
By Rocket Post, Published November 22, 2013
“Life is short, but there is always time enough for courtesy.”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Etiquette on social media is no exception to Emerson’s notion, especially on Twitter. The micro-blogging platform is widely popular in the sphere of business, and can churn many real life professional connections if utilized properly. So extract the most from Twitter by following our top 3 Twitter etiquette profile guidelines:
Don’t talk about yourself in the third person
“Ralph Waldo Emerson is an american essayist and enjoys long walks on the beach. He is also a competitive sushi eater and is the 1998 National Checker Champion.”

Talking about yourself in the third person is not only pretentious, but it makes yourself sound like the commentator of your own biography. No one wants to associate with someone that talks about themselves as if they are another person. You aren’t fooling anyone either; we know you wrote it. Instead, stick with a simple, professional, but creative profile description:
“At the beach, Ralph studies the works of his savior, Dracula. His teachings guide Ralph throughout life and make Ralph very thirsty to connect with people.”

Avoid religion and politics
Remember the age-old rule, the two things you don’t talk about at a bar are religion and politics? This same law applies in Twitter etiquette. You never know what next connection Twitter will bring, and you don’t want to hinder that connection because of religious rants.

“When Ralph isn’t soaking in the words of Dracula, he is rallying for Ellen Degeneres’ Presidential campaign.”
Your choice of political candidates may be important to you, but just like a bumper sticker on your car, this choice may prevent contact with your next customer or client.

Avoid nothingness
One of the worst things you can do is leave your Twitter profile blank. How is anyone going to know who you are, where you work, or what your interests are if they are starring at a blank box? A description reading “this is about me in 140 characters” is better than nothing at all. At least we know you’re paying attention.

A few other etiquette points:
There is no bigger rookie move than marking your profile as private. Twitter was created to be an open platform of thoughts and ideas, not your locked up private diary. Connections and retweets are the heartbeat of Twitter; setting your profile up as private and making a potential follower wait for your approval cuts that heartbeat off. Make your profile public: if you don’t want others reading your tweets, you either are tweeting a little too personally, or you need to move to Facebook.
    Spammy direct messages on Twitter are the pain in every Twitter users side. No other medium of communication on Twitter screams “fake robot.” Avoid setting up sale-sy direct messages or you can kiss your new followers adios. If you are in the sales sector of business, put that in your profile description. (But don’t make it into a horrible sales pitch.) On the same token, don’t set up a direct message with that same pitch. This is not only impersonal, but it makes you appear less worthy of a follow if all you’re interested in is selling.You may love a good hard boiled egg, but don’t keep your profile picture as one. No one wants to connect to an egg, nor someone that is too lazy to change his or her profile picture. Flash those pearly whites and choose an authentic picture of yourself.
Twitter is all about networking and creating connections; don’t make it harder on yourself by not abiding by some of these Twitter etiquette guidelines. Think outside the box when piecing together your Twitter profile. By following these simple rules, you too would make Ralph Waldo Emerson proud of your courteous Twitter feed.


Great news!

My book is now atop the Amazon Netiquette list. Please go to Amazon and search for "netiquette" . There is a wonderful review from Kirkus as well.

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About Netiquette IQ

My book, "Netiquette IQ - A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email" and the Kindle version are now available on Amazon. Please visit my author profile at



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