- Don’t use programs that autofollow anyone who follows you on Twitter. It’s a social network not a robot network.
- Don’t broadcast messages on Twitter using bots. You’ll just damage your brand, personal or corporate.
- Don’t send friend requests on DIGG and then abuse the privilege with constant shout outs. Every day is too many, for chrissake.
- Don’t send an email that says “TTYL” after the previous email completed a conversation. Or “thanks again” or “take care.” We are drowning in email. Yes, mom said to always be polite. Sending less emails is polite 2.0. If you must have the last word, change the subject line to “TTYL, end” so the person knows they don’t need to read your 10th damn “goodbye” email.
- If you’re a sending a pitch, (business service, PR, report, etc etc) don’t address the email “Hey”, “Hey again,” “Yo”, “All”, Dear [ ], “Dear Blogger”, or “Dear First_Name”. Don’t say “Dear Mr Ochman.” Say “Dear B.L.” or “Hi B.L.” if you don’t know me, and are too lazy to look at my photo on my blog or website, and are not sure if I’m male or female. I think I speak for most people when I say that I prefer informality to a sex change operation.
- Do not send endless messages via Facebook, etc. You’re not that interesting.
- Don’t IM unless you have something to say that I might actually want or need to know and that really can’t wait for an email response.
- Do not send huge “hilarious” video files in email. If they aren’t on YouTube or somewhere else you can link to, ask before emailing an attachment. If you want to share a video you made yourself, upload it to a file-sharing site and send a link.
- Check Snopes.com before you send an email about the inventor of penicillin who gave an apple to someone’s daughter, or whatever that stupid email was about that went around recently.
- Use “Bcc” – not open lists – for emails sent to several people. Do not forward email without deleting the name and email and other extraneous information from the person who sent it first.
- Do not send freaking chain letters, or anything that says “Forward this to 10 people in the next 10 minutes or your left ear will fall off.” Ever. And don’t send petitions in email – all of the legitimate ones are online. Send a link.
Did I miss anything?
Posted by B.L. Ochman
Hey again, Mr Ochman. Great post. TTYL
Thanks for this article. I have some habitual offenders I am going to send this to!
* Don’t mark the email as Important or Urgent if it is not
* Don’t forget to include your deadline or a timeframe to respond in the email so I can priortize appropriately
* Don’t hit “Reply All” if you are really only replying to one person in the group
* Don’t track your emails to see when / if they’re opened – it’s creepy (okay, sometimes this one may come in handy – but DON’T do it for non-mission critical communication!)
Thanks for this post. We can’t have enough of these reminders because the whole world is in different places with Etiquette 2.0. In a similar vein, I just posted a list of Twitter Don’ts — http://tr.im/h1YP
I consider much of this common courtesy…but what the hell do I know? heh
Pretty spot on, for the most part. Cripes, I thought everyone knew TEN YEARS AGO not to forward stupid chain letters or obvious urban myths. No offense to anyone, but I tend to get those from people “of a certain age” (I’m looking at YOU, mom!).
Not so much about etiquette, but two other things people need to consider:
1. Use a spell checker. I don’t care if your finger slipped or otherwise made a typo, people will immediately discount what you’re saying if it’s full of spelling mistakes. If your message is so important, then surely you can take a few valuable seconds to make sure it’s spelled correctly.
2. For the love of God, the apostrophe is NOT to be used to warn the reader of an approaching S, OK? Piano’s = possessive. Pianos = plural. Its = possessive. It’s = It is. Got that?
“Don’t IM unless you have something to say that I might actually want or need to know and that really can’t wait for an email response.”
Clearly you’ve never been in love. xoxox ;-)
Ask me what my schedule is BEFORE you send the Outlook invite. Ugggh!
If you’re sending a link to an article, give me a frame of reference why. Don’t “FYI . . . LINK”. I have no clue why you think this is important for me.
Give me at least 4 hours before “wanted to make sure you got this” and sending the email again. If it’s that important, CALL me!
It’s not my fault that your email got caught in the spam filters, or just didn’t make it to me for reasons unknown. Even the post office loses a letter every now and then :)
And finally, stay on topic or change the subject. If I’m caught in a never ending email thread with you that wanders all over the place, I may not get that golden nugget that you include at the very end. New topic? New subject line.
I’ll be sending this list to a few people I work with and another major email offender in my life – my mother. I’ve been telling her to stop sending chain letters for years.
But to add to your list…
Stop telling me things I don’t know about you. If I don’t know something about you, chances are that I don’t care to know it.
Anyone who completes those Facebook 25-things lists is annoying and has way too much time on their hands.
Seriously great post. Although I do auto-welcome folks on Twitter and think it’s a great idea. (shame on me)
But here’s my thing: please use caps when you write an email. When you use all lower case it makes you look like you either don’t know how to use your keyboard or are unstable. Either of these isn’t good. Also, all caps – bad thing too.
And on Facebook, I hate the IM feature on there and wish they’d get rid of it. Between Skype and text messaging I don’t think *anyone* needs yet another service interrupting their day.
And PS, like Marie – if I don’t get back to you on email right away don’t assume I’ve been kidnapped and am being held for ransom.
Do people still send chain letters? Really?
Nice post! Thanks!
I guess I could add only one thing that gets on my nerves… Would be nice if people at least dropped a note when they get your email but don’t have time to respond in full. (Especially if it is a business matter!) Otherwise you don’t know what to do: to follow up or consider yourself ignored…
You covered it so nicely. One other thing, how many twitters per day is too many? Or is there a limit?
My Twitter-peeve is an excessive number of daily tweets, especially ones that have little information or entertainment value. Even the funny ones I follow tend to post about six times a day or less.
I love your rules, BL. I would add:
Stop using excessive !!! and ??? in your posts. My ears are bleeding.
Please put a real subject line in your emails. Even something like “funny video” is more helpful than “from mom.” Yes: Every email I get from Mom has this in the subject line.
Great post. I’d like to add:
*Don’t IM if it’s too complicated to explain. Pick up the phone once in a while!
*When forwarding emails, don’t include all the stuff that went back and forth for weeks, just focus on the most pertinent.