Image Map

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Digital Netiquette - Not Just for Kids

Just finished reading this post by my sister who is in Real Estate: What Does Your Email Name Say About You?    In the post she receives an email from someone called, "SueMe".  While this may be cute to some, it says a boat load to others (especially in the business world).  Chip Camden states "Your professional email is like a handshake to clients".  What is "SueMe" really saying? As a professional,  I would be wary of this person's business.

This made me think about how this applies in Education as well.  How do we approach Digital "Netiquette" with our students and colleagues?

Many of my students have their own email accounts.  (Yes, even at the 4th grade level!).  I remember when my two teens first started emailing.  Back in the day we were choosing names that would NOT identify them as we were all afraid of the big, bad internet.  Their names were definitely "cute" and "kidsy" (read to the bottom to find out what they were!).   As my children got older, they kept those emails but created more professional ones for business and college (at the behest of their mother). 

Even when presenting professional development courses, I try to advise folks to choose Twitter handles that are professional and not just clever. (Sometimes to no avail).  As adults, we are THE role models for our students.  However,  many adults are new to social media, while some still afraid of the information put out in such venues.  These folks don't know it, but they are already thinking about being a 'good' digital citizen. Share the resources below with those first starting out - a little knowledge in this are may make them more comfortable.

A lot of our information is already in the internet world.  Let's be mindful of the information we are adding to that data by making good choices. Good choices when it comes to name selection as well as content.

*Added after original post:  Oops - just noticed my own faux pas as I was sending an email to the local bank:  My signature at the end of my email contains links for THIS blog, my Kayaker's blog & my Recipe Blog - how IS that for UNPROFESSIONAL....up there with SueME!!!!   Time to take my own advice

Some resources for newbies, kids and adults alike:

Digital Netiquette:  Prezi by @mrsdkrebs  Outlines the Do's and Don'ts

Digital Citizenship Wiki - Great information ranging from communication to access.

Digital Citizenship:Using Technology Appropriately:  Nine Elements of Digital Citizenship

Internet Safety Project: How to Create a Safe Username 

7 Terrible Secrets Revealed by Your Email Address (& How You Can Fix Them)

Digital Citizenship Resources Compiled: by Cybraryman

As promised - usernames for my kiddos (didn't say I'd make it easy):
  child 1:  a tailed amphibian with soft, moist skin (starts with an "S")
  child 2:  another name for a teeter totter

What is the silliest email/username you've come across?... at



  1. I had never given this much thought. I know you are forward thinking in teaching your students and helping the adults you know sift through proper and safe digital netiquette.

    As I read the comments in my post this morning, I realize that for business even those simple aol or gmail endings may say more about you than you know.

    It is something to think about. Boy has life got complicated. Nice post.

    1. Life has gotten complicated, but at the same time this age of technology has offered us a broad connection to folks we would otherwise have never known. I think we just need to be 'mindful' and use good judgement as we would otherwise.

      As always, thanks for posting & in this case - sparking this post!

  2. Hi Nan;

    And all the time I thought that I was "incognito" to the Internet Space Ship.

    Thanks for teaching me about the world we now live in.

    Love, Dad

    1. Dad,
      You have NEVER been incognito....and I think that is where I get it from!!! Love you!


  3. Hi Nancy,

    Fabulous post! This is so important, and you are right, it's not just kids that need to think about it. Many of us didn't grow up with the Internet or online technologies that make it so easy to communicate. However, the rules of the online world are the same as face-to-face -- be polite, respectful, safe, ... Interesting how some don't see the connection between the two. Thanks for reminding us of this.

    You have great links to fabulous resources as always.

    Kind regards,

    1. Tracy,
      Thanks for making that point about treating the online world as if it were "face to face". I used to say to my kids "if it's not something you would tell your mother, then you probably shouldn't say it online". That may be a bit extreme but the idea is as you say, be polite, respectful & safe.

      Thank you for commenting. I always am thankful for your input Tracy. One of the best things about being this online world is meeting folks like you who are willing to share their expertise and willing to learn together!!!


  4. This site explains how to send effective email replies. It discusses why email etiquette is necessary, lists email etiquette rules, and explains how to enforce these rules by creating a company email policy.


I welcome your comments and ideas!!

Directions for posting:

1) Choose "Choose an Identity " first. If you don't have a Google/Blogger account, you can choose Name/URL and type in your name, then place the web site that best describes you in the URL (i.e. If you do not have a URL you can leave that blank. You can also choose "Anonymous" which will leave the comment but not your name.

2) Feel free to "Preview" your comment to see what it will look like when posted.

3) Select "Post Comment" when you're ready. (Sometimes this might need to be done more than once.)

4) NOTE: Before posting a comment I will copy it, in the event there is a problem, that way I haven't lost my comment and can try to post it again.

5) Thank you Tracy Watanabe for these directions to post!