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How do I: Practice Netiquette

This guide covers Information, Media, and Digital Literacy concepts and Digital Citizenship for Gr. 9-12 students, as well as teacher and parents.

Practice Netiquette

Photo Credit: Tanja Fohr, licensed under Creative Commons

Plagiarism vs. Academic Integrity

Netiquette 101


Netiquette refers to the etiquette, or code of behaviour, used when communicating over the internet.  Dependent upon the context, rules of netiquette can be formal or informal.  


Netiquette 101:

1.  Know the context.

  • Who are you speaking to (e.g. a peer or teacher)?
  • Is information or formal communication appropriate?

2.  Understand the expectations.

  • Staff & students are expected to conduct themselves ethically and demonstrate character.  This is applicable to both in-peron and online communication. See the "Character @ UCDSB" box on the right for more information.
  • If you observe cyberbullying, do what is right by taking action - see Cyberbullying for more information.
  • Do not participate in flaming - online arguments that become nasty and insulting, whereby objective merits of a viewpoint are lost.

3.  Remember the human - the person

  • Remember that there is a person on the other 'end' of your devise that you are speaking to.  Although some communication can be anonymous, the "Golden Rule" should apply: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  • Give time for people to respond to texts, emails, and other messages.  
  • Forgive mistakes; not all communications are sent purposefully and we all make mistakes from time to time.

4.  Use appropriate tone & style.

  • Written communication can easily be misinterpreted.  
    • Do a tone check before pressing send.  
    • If  you receive a communication that is unclear or seems affronting, request clarification before reacting.
    • All caps is the same as yelling online - simply don't use them.
  • Use the appropriate communication style for your audience.  
    • If communicating informally, for example socializing with a friend, abbreviations, short forms, and emodicons are likely appropriate.
    • If communicating formally, for example participating in an online class discussion, proper grammer should be used.  This includes correct punctuation, sentence structure, and an absense of "texting" abbreviations and short forms (e.g. lol, brb, ) and emodicons. 

5.  Demonstrate Academic Honesty.

  • Do not steal other people's ideas, rather give them the credit.

Character @ UCDSB

Click here to learn about the UCDSB Character Always initiative.

Speak Out & Get Support

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