Facebook Etiquette

Facebook has become a social portal a habit elevated with iPhones or smart phones with just one touch we can find out what our friends are up to, stay connected to anyone at a distance, reconnect to people from our past and share our thoughts to the masses.

There have become definitive types of ‘status updaters’ those that are witty or ironic, others who like to talk about serious things going on in the world, the typical moaner, over-sharer, bad poet, campaign addict – the list goes on and so we can’t help categorise or prejudice Facebook users and the way they use their platform for freedom of speech.

As a Journlism and Media student, the further I go into my studies, I’m becoming more and more aware of the power of social networks and being forced willingly to open as many types of social networks and blogs as possible to increase my potential in the industry.

The further society delves into a new digital world the more I have noticed a lack of ‘Etiquette’.  Like the highway-code for the drivers, while the internet is a platform for freedom of expression or opinion, surely some level of social etiquette needs to remain?

This is a pattern that I have particularly noticed having jumped from working full-time to becoming a mature student. With friend adding behaviour at University much more used as a tool for making friends rather than connecting with current or old and admittedly, due to the high volume of people on my course I did succumb to accepting friend requests from anyone who was on it and it’s built from there.

So what used to be my portal to stay connected has now turned into a networking tool and a new risky way of using the site that has backfired on a couple of occasions from rude comments on status updates and repeated attempts to live chat that were just uncomfortable, I’m not sure I’m comfortable with actually meeting someone or having my first conversation with them online.

So where do we draw the line? Is it rude not to accept a request from someone if they are a friend of a friend of a friend? Or should we be able to trust that even in a digital society there is a certain etiquette to be followed?

I would really appreciate your thoughts on the subject. Please post comments here if you have had any negative Facebook friend experiences you would like to share. This is your chance to blow off some Facebook steam!

Photography by renjith krishnan, www.freedigitalimages.net.

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