I can actually remember when Facebook only allowed colleges and universities as users of the site.
If you didn’t have a school email for the signup then you couldn’t get in. My colleagues used the site mainly for posting after party pics, the occasional family posts and a few hilarious memes. Nowadays the decorum for line posting and sharing has gotten so out of control that depending on what medium you use you can easily stumble upon the “dark parts” of a site or page.
We would call this “the dark part of the tube” which pretty much meant that you’d spent so much time on browsing videos that the algorithm started pointing you into watching random and sometimes unsettling videos. The same applies to the major platforms of our day: Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
While there are endless amounts of subject matter and videos created for many different classes of people there are a few certain guidelines that anyone browsing can apply to their online personas.
I’ll also delve into Groupme as well since i and a few of my real world friends use this platform as well; it’s growing into a formidable opponent of Twitter and will probably attain that status once the bugs and features get updated.
We will begin with the essential Do’s of browsing, commenting, responding, posting pictures and mythical direct messaging or “Hopping in the DMs”. Right after each Do there will be a Do not pointing out the things you’ll want to avoid. For sake of reading I’ll present this to you in bullet point form:
* When Browsing *
DO: look for things that you are into, this could be whatever you like or are curious about.
DON’T: search for things that could trigger you or anything that upsets you. Online time should be fun and entertaining, never stressful or irritating.
* When Commenting *
DO: write something thats insightful, funny, or somewhat bold but truthful. Rants are totally fine as long as there’s something of value at the end
DON’T: write things that have no value whatsoever, are random as hell, or could cause concern for anyone else reading them. If you’re angry, drunk, really high or contemplating dark thoughts then you definitely will want to log off.
* When Responding *
DO: respond in a respectful manner, even playfully or in a joke form. Always know who you’re responding to and read the room for the vibe.
DON’T: respond in a hostile or threatening manner, or in highly emotional manner. THIS IS THE INTERNET. If there’s something thats been said that you feel is totally out of line the best thing to do is to simply exist and or log off until you’re cooled down. Your emotional health is more important than “settling a score” or “telling your side”. It’s not important enough.
* When Posting Pictures *
DO: post pictures of what you’re doing, your family and daily activities ONLY AND ONLY when you fully know the vibe and intentions of the group or space. You’ll never know each individual so that isn’t of concern.
DON’T: post nudes of yourself on the main thread if it’s not that kind of party. Also no pictures of death, anything incriminating or revenge porn. Use your best judgment as there are many different spaces with rules and vibes.
* When “Hopping In The DMs” *
DO: shed your online persona a bit and talk truthfully to whoever you direct message. Don’t fully reveal yourself but just enough to build up a vibe. Always remember that it is the internet.
DON’T: send any nudes if they didn’t ask. DON’T DO IT. And also nothing that could put you in hot water later on. People tend to screenshot things nowadays so save the embarrassment later.
* When There’s A Disagreement Between Other Users *
DO: grab some popcorn of choice and what the show. Eye emojis and theatre memes are really good for these so if you’ve been waiting. Now is your time to shine.
DON’T: hop in or put yourself in the middle trying to defend a side. Unless one of them or both of them are people that you know in real life and it’s really getting out of hand the best suggestion is to let them duke it out or exhaust themselves. Usually one side will step out or stop or both will log off.
*for Admins to use your own suggestions as you maintain the space.
* When Something Major Happens In The World/News *
DO: share a CREDIBLE news link or source. Remember that people from all over the world can be online at any given moment and there are time constraints so everyone doesn’t receive the same info as you do.
DON’T: post links of any fake sites or false news pages as this can cause confusion and anger among people who are really invested in the story or news. Last thing someone likes to do is question a source or link from you as this can ruin your future credibility within the group.
* When Someone Gets Blocked/Banned/Kicked Out *
DO: show eye emojis or post a rip meme. There was a good reason why this person was probably booted. This doesn’t apply to mistakes or boots made out of emotion.
DON’T: post a response about whoever got booted, as this can be seen as antagonizing and could result in you being kicked. keep it short and classy. Also don’t threaten whoever booted the person with anything hostile. Any issues should be handled with the admin or owner of the space accordingly. Less mess the better.
* When Someone Posts About A Personal Death *
DO: Offer your condolences and well wishes. Short and brief is the key as we cannot truly know how the person is feeling but still would like to offer up our thoughts.
DON’T: Attempt to joke, console or talk in long length with whoever posted. Emotional can be high and especially when dealing with death people can respond in unusual ways. Stay respectful and out of the business as much as possible.
These are just some of the major points when online that if done right can put you in a great place as a user and browser for whatever space and group you’re in. The internet and media platforms should always be fun, entertaining and used as a place to create positive memories.
We want to avoid anything negative and it’s just not worth the mental drain in the long run to operate on the web in chaos and drama.
It’s fun and games until things get blown out of proportion and things get said that aren’t really meant and people act totally outside of their character. Keep it classy, brief and your interactions will reflect that. If there’s anything i might have missed or any other great tips and tricks you could offer be sure to leave a comment or head over to my main instagram page and leave a comment or direct message. Thanks for reading this far and i appreciate you all.