Research Paper: Netiquette [9] Business Communication Trend

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[. . .] One of the basic rules that netiquette experts promote is to remember the human; this is the cyberspace equivalent to reminding people to do unto others as they would have people do unto them. This rule is meant to remind those who communicate electronically that because they see only a computer screen, they should remember that there is someone with feelings that he or she is corresponding with (Ross, 2011).

Almost all netiquette guidelines stress the need for courteous and respectful behavior. Shoemaker-Galloway (2007) suggests other Internet behavior tips, such as using emoticons. Communicating online can make it challenging to judge the emotions of the person writing the message. Using emoticons lets the individual doing the writing accurately convey their feelings to the reader.

If there is one netiquette rule that everyone agrees on, it is that when one writes using all capital letters, the message is the same as SHOUTING. Self-expression is fine, as long as one understands that typing more than a few words using all capital letters rates as rudeness (Shoemaker-Galloway, 2007).

Another useful netiquette guideline is the admonition to think before posting. Anyone going online should realize that whatever one posts online today may return to haunt the individual tomorrow. What seems like a harmless or prank photo posted to a social networking site could disqualify that individual from getting a job at some point in the future. A growing number of employers and colleges now surf social networking sites as part of the employment process (Shoemaker-Galloway, 2007).

Good business netiquette suggests that emails be kept short and sweet. Kelland-May (2009) also suggests people who receive a lot of emails appreciate a descriptive subject line. Signatures should be tastefully done, at the same time limited to three or four lines. Also, one should normally be professional and polite, and whether online or in person, everyone should behave in an ethical manner (Kelland-May, 2009).

Reflection Page

The purpose of this essay was to examine a business communication trend, and I chose the subject of netiquette. Initially I expected to find detailed lists of dos and don'ts, and I was not disappointed in that respect. Writers on the subject compiled extensive lists of pet peeves and complaints, as well as advice on discouraged and recommended behaviors. They also promoted awareness of and sensitivity to the concerns of others during online interactions. I found that many of the articles read as though they were channeling Emily Post. Who knew that the online community was so engaged with the subject of manners!

In the process of researching netiquette, I learned what the term meant, and that no one actually knows who was first to use the term. In addition, my research touched on how netiquette originated in the years before the World Wide Web existed, and how netiquette has evolved over time. In fact, the evolution of technology seemed to drive netiquette guidelines more than any other single factor. Upon reflection, this causality makes sense; however it was not intuitively obvious to me before I conducted my research.

Learning the history of netiquette was a fascinating experience, giving me exposure to a broad range of opinions about what makes for good online manners. In some cases, experts even offered contradictory advice. There were several common guidelines that nearly everyone mentioned, but I also found several that were unique to a particular site or writer. Surveying the literature on netiquette revealed a wealth of interesting, useful data and changed my perception of the entire online experience. The Internet is generally a safe, informative, and helpful place, and the use of netiquette guidelines contributes to making time spent online that much more beneficial and rewarding.

Works Cited

Hambridge, S. (1995). Netiquette Guidelines. Internet Engineering Task Force. Retrieved July 11, 2011 from

Kelland-May, L. (2009). Basic business netiquette: How to avoid cyber blunders. Retrieved July 11, 2011 from

Netiquette. (2011). Retrieved July 11, 2011 from

Ross, S.T. (2011). Rule 1: Remember the human. Retrieved July 11, 2011 from

Shoemaker-Galloway, J. (2011). Top 10 netiquette guidelines. Retrieved July 11, 2011 from

Technogeek. (2011). A history of some Usenet rules. Retrieved July 11, 2011 from… [END OF PREVIEW]

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APA Format

Netiquette [9] Business Communication Trend.  (2011, July 12).  Retrieved August 23, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Netiquette [9] Business Communication Trend."  12 July 2011.  Web.  23 August 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Netiquette [9] Business Communication Trend."  July 12, 2011.  Accessed August 23, 2019.