How to Use Chat Room Etiquette

Geek!This is Ashryne’s submission for the HP Magic Giveaway. Feel free to leave comments for this article as you see fit – your feedback is certainly welcomed! If you’d like to submit your own how-to, what-is, or top-five list, you can send it to me. Views and opinions of this writer are not necessarily my own:

The chat room is a wonderful place where people can unite and maybe even help one another. With everything that is good, bad follows closely behind. This guide will explain proper chat room etiquette and provide examples.

  1. Excessive Exclamation or Question Marks – One of the common problems in a chat room is the need to emphasize certain questions, or statements by included 2 billion question marks, or exclamation marks. As an example, Johnny has a question for Chris. Johnny asks Chris “oh no my pet monkey stuck a banana in my PC and now it is broken!!!!????? Help !!!” What would be the proper way for Johnny to ask this question? Well, Johnny could try to ask the question in a much calmer, more relaxed manner. The real question is how did Johnny’s pet monkey get the banana in the PC? Instead, Johnny should ask Chris “my pet monkey stuck a banana into the computers fan and broke my PC. Can you help me?” As we can see by the proper method, Johnny is much calmer and actually explains how the monkey got the banana into the PC.
  2. Foul Language – The second problem that comes up in a chat room discussion is the need to compensate for a lack of who knows what by excessive swearing. Excessive swearing not only causes the chat member to look foolish, but can also be quite annoying. For example, the chat at censors filter words and replaces them with (censored) so anyone who swears has that word replaced. This example will be using (censored). Johnny is now angry at Chris because Chris has not responded to his question within 2 seconds. Johnny tells Chris “(censored) your teeth (censored) because you are so cool (censored) my (censored) hug.” Obviously Johnny has a lot to compensate for in this example. By this point in time, an op or halfop would have already removed the issue at hand. Johnny could have kept his cool and used proper chat room etiquette to have addressed the problem. I guess now Johnny will not know why his monkey likes to stick bananas in fans. The proper way to do this would be for Johnny to wait a minimum of ten minutes for a response before speaking and say something like “Chris my good fellow, is there an email address at which I can send you my question in case you were unable to view it in the chat?” As we can see by the proper method, the attitude of Johnny is still a calm and relaxed one.
  3. EXCESSIVE CAPS – The last situation I will address is that of caps lock. Caps lock is a button that makes all your letters appear uppercase. Caps lock can be considered rude, and yelling. For example, Johnny says “MY PET MONKEY TOTALLY ROCKS.” Okay Johnny, I think we get the idea. You have just yelled on the internet, how sad. The proper way to say this would be “My pet monkey totally rocks”. This method gets exactly the same point across, without you getting kicked from the chat.

Remember, always use proper chat etiquette.

6 thoughts on “How to Use Chat Room Etiquette”

  1. etiquette is one thing, this post covers the major and perhaps not so obvious ones. How about this? Are you more relaxed in a chat setting that you’d ask questions you would not in a physical setting, say a reception?

    Without the benefit of seeing what is going on behind the scenes, body language or facial expressions, some of the major communications cues are missing. I try to keep this in mind before I hit send. Also , since I am setting out to be the funniest, smart guy on twitter, I’ll follow up some tweets that go for the laugh with a caveat tweet, just in case what I intended to say was not what the receiver perceived.

    yeah, comedy, it’s a tough racket.

    All the best, Chris.

  2. My pet monkey *totally* rocks. I mean it TOTALLY rocks. It rocks totally. It totally ROCKS!

    I think Caps are okay to emphasize stress in a phrase. You coluld also use other symbols to denote that stress. “All Caps” are a no-no. But it is equally rude to waste chatroom bandwidth by jumping in and saying “Stop Yelling” any time anyone uses caps at all.

    Think of comic book balloons. Some words are in a bolder hand, to emphasize how the line is to be read. The easiest way to accomplish that in ASCII (I’m not yelling, its an acronym) is to use capital letters. Or you could use underscore or asterisks IN THE CASE when there is a chat room nazi jumping on someone everytime the shift key is used.

  3. I don’t enter chat rooms very often. I am so shy that I usually just sit there and watch the others talk.

    I had to wince when you mentioned excessive punctuation. I’ve been known to break a few rules in my writing.

    Fortunately many people accept that as part of my charm.

  4. Maybe it’s just me, but the absolute most irritating thing people do in chat rooms is type in what I call idiot speak.
    For example: “How r u dng 2day?”
    I understand that we have to be able to shorten our messages when we’re texting, but really, is that kind of crap necessary in an actual chat room? Or worse, an email?
    Then there are people that talk almost explicitly in chat acronyms. Seems like I’ve just learned all the latest ones when suddenly a whole new bunch of them come out. I’m only 28 so I don’t think I should feel that much like an old fogey when trying to chat with people.
    Thanks for the chatroom etiquette lesson!

  5. Good, clear post; I think that “chatroom etiquette” isn’t much different from the etiquette people (should) use in real life; be polite, dont yell, don’t be offensive, debate in a civilized manner, just treat the other as you want to be treated, be helpful….
    It’s all very simple really :)

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