Thursday, March 14, 2013

21st Century Netiquette

Here’s some basic hints for chat loop/internet etiquette. If this all seems to be common sense, you’re right, it is. It’s just that way too many people forget their manners online.
So here we go.

Wrong publisher: No, don’t tell everyone on the chat loop for publisher A that you have a book releasing tomorrow from publisher B, or one that you’re self publishing. The most you can do is tell them you have some “exciting news” on your personal blog and post a link to the blog. (not to another publisher’s website, or to Amazon etc!)

Read it before hitting send: Yes we’ve all seen some screamingly funny YouTube videos of people who sent a rant to the entire email list instead of to one person, or worse a rant about someone and included them in the copies. Read the “to” field before clicking on “send” and especially before hitting “reply all”.

Don’t spam your loops: It’s fine to tell a general loop about your book. It’s even fine to tell them twice, but don’t keep posting the same blurb and excerpt over and over again. Talk about another book, or about your blog, or even about your cat, then give them a new excerpt from the book.

Never ever post advertising about your books on someone else’s Facebook timeline. That will get you unfriended very quickly.

Truncate long messages: On yahoo chat loops there’s always people on digest. The last thing they want to receive is ten messages with the same excerpt repeated repeated repeated. If you are just saying thank you, or congratulations, or a few words, clip the message. Delete the blurb and the excerpt, just leave the title and author’s name, and maybe a website link in case the person on digest can’t find them in earlier posts.

Take 1:1 conversations off loop: If a discussion topic has dwindled to just two or three people, take it off loop and talk about it as long as you like on your private emails. The other three hundred people on the loop have obviously lost interest in this discussion long ago.

Change the subject line: Often a discussion will wander through various topics if it last a while. When the topic changes alter the subject line to reflect the new topic. That way people who had lost interest will know you’ve now moved on to something else that may interest them again.

Finally NEVER abuse anyone online. Someone will take a screen shot and even if you delete it the post may come back to haunt you or ruin your writing career.

Helen Woodall

Helen is available to line edit and/ or content edit fiction and non-fiction. Rates on application.


anny cook said...

ALL good points!!!

Helen Woodall: Freelance Editing said...

It's all common sense but it's amazing how people forget their manners when they go online.