Chapter Six. ETIQUETTE: Rules to Live By

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Etiquette refers to a set of behaviors—or community standards—that a group of people has agreed to abide by. These standards bring a community’s beliefs and values into focus by celebrating what’s admired and letting people know what won’t be tolerated.

In a medium as fluid and flexible as the Web, establishing and maintaining community standards can be challenging. Online culture has long been anti-authoritarian, and people in Web communities routinely do and say things they’d never dare to in a face-to-face encounter. To complicate matters further, the tools for enforcing community ground rules are still ...

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