Netiquette: a parents guide to teaching good manners online

Netiquette refers to the new order of manners and etiquette required to be good, courteous and responsible digital citizens. The greatest lessons we can ever teach our kids about being safe and responsible online are based on the foundations of respecting oneself and always respecting others. The basic principals of ‘do unto others as you would have done to you’ must always be adhered. Manners today however are more than the parroting of ‘please’ and ‘thankyou’s’. The very public nature of this new world ensures we need to ramp up the etiquette in order to keep up with the times.

Here are my top tips for Online Netiquette, that we as parents must also strive for, in order to be the best role models we can be for our kids.Netiquette

 Now of course these are just a guide and manners can differ for different contexts and different audiences. I know many people have no problem swearing online, and of course each to their own. For myself however, whilst I may drop the odd swear word in real life I am always conscious of my surroundings and the people around me when I do. As I never really know who is reading what I write, I prefer to stick to the belief that, “If I don’t want my kids to see it, I won’t publish it”. At the end of the day the manners we use online must be an extension to the common courtesy we pay people in real life. I do believe we have to be even more cautious however due to the very reflective,  public and permanent nature of the online world.

Click here for the  Netiquette PDF version to print, keep or forward to others!

Can you think of any other behaviours that need including to ensure good manners online?

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This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Renee Wilson

    Please don’t read my post today, Martine. There’s a swear word in the heading. *Hangs head in shame*. To be honest, I rarely swear online because, as you mentioned above, I am conscious of the wide range of people who read my blog. I certainly don’t ever want to offend anyone. I was just talking to my husband the other day about bloggers who swear alot in their posts. I find it quite funny and lighthearted, but I know it just isn’t right for me. These are some great tips on netiquette. Thank you. #teamIBOT.

  2. Fantastic pointers.
    One thing I learned as a Manager, was to always read and re-read every single thing to be sent to a client. It is so easy to make a small slip which can create an entirely new meaning.
    I see so many errors to this day still in emails from people and I shudder at the boo boos which might give a different impression to what was intended – ouch!

    1. Martine Oglethorpe

      Yes, not only do we have to deal with autocorrects but little slip ups without a tone of voice or facial expression can certainly change the meaning of a statement!

  3. Hope

    Isn’t it sad that these “online etiquettes” have to be established, shouldn’t it all simply be common sense?? In any case, a great list of timely things to adhere to and that everyone in the digital arena should read!

  4. Mystery Case

    Having watched my nieces and nephews reach 13 and hit Facebook for the first time with disastrous results, I was super keen to expose my girls to social media and social media etiquette while I still had some influence and control. There has been some debate recently as to if this should be taught in schools and while I don’t have any issues with it, I do think parents should also take more of an interest in what their children are doing online.

    1. Martine Oglethorpe

      Yes, definitely I believe parents have to take more a an active role in both what their kids are doing and in what they themselves are doing. We know our kids learn much more from watching than being ‘lectured’.

  5. Hee hee, yes to capital letters and earphones! A great list. And I love your new photo BTW 🙂

    1. Martine Oglethorpe

      Thanks Emily, the photo was a little overdue. Getting ready for new blog makeover too!

  6. EssentiallyJess

    This is awesome Martine! I’m going to print to put in our homework area as a good reminder for all of us. 🙂

  7. This is a great guide. I feel nervous when I think about my kids getting online and having social media, however, between the school led classes and the lessons I have to share I am hoping they will not crash and burn in a spectacular fashion.

    1. Martine Oglethorpe

      I am sure they wont. I think that is an important point too Becky. We may all make little mistakes along the way, but it is the big crash and burn ones we hope to avoid!

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