For this to work, it must be a safe place where everyone feels their voice will be respected, supported and heard. Setting up clear guidelines for how we write online is very important. We want to create a successful workspace that will last.
How to Post Successfully:
Use each others names. Using a person’s name when you respond to his/her postings makes it friendlier.
Read questions and conversational postings carefully so you don’t misunderstand what the person’s saying.
Compliment when someone contributes original ideas to the conversation.
Ask questions. If you aren’t clear what is meant, just ask, in a kind way. If you have a question, probably other members of the group are confused too.
Be considerate. Remember we can’t see body language or hear your tone of voice, so you need to keep your language respectful.
Avoid slang, jargon, and sarcasm. Use proper spelling (not text/im speak).
Listen to all ideas presented. Remember there is no right or wrong in a discussion, as long as it is supported and respectful. Different points of view makes it more interesting.
Stay open minded.
Respond instead of reacting. Do not write a response if you’re angry or
upset. Instead, wait until you calm down and collect your thoughts.
Really read all responses. Avoid skimming. Respect the time others spent writing out their thoughts by reading carefully and thoughtfully.
Reread your messages before posting to make sure your ideas are
clear, respectful, and supported.
Critique the content, not the person.
Do not present your personal opinions as fact. Back up your ideas with
information to strengthen your statements.
Courteously answer all questions addressed directly to you.
Make “I” statements when respectfully disagreeing. Sharing an opposing
opinion or idea is an important part of discussion, but it needs to be presented in a way that keeps the conversation going.
Do not use all caps when writing. It is interpreted as yelling.
Avoid emotional punctuation, like exclamation points, unless you are
complimenting an idea shared.
Adapted from The Do’s and Don’ts of Student Communication Online
Let’s give it a try. Post a comment. What will help everyone get comfortable writing online? Is there anything else we should add?