Digital Etiquette: Don’t Be a Digital Dick

With a variety of generations now completely embedded in the ever evolving age of technology, a whole new playing field has emerged. Just like the manners your parent’s hopefully drilled into your skull, digital etiquette needs to be considered as well. From cell phones to emails and everything in-between, it seems as if no one has stopped to consider how to integrate these tools into society. It is as if we all just discovered fire but have no idea how to stop it from burning out of control. Taking a step back and peering through our digital cocoon just may bring to light some of the dick moves you have been doing without even being aware you are doing it.

Why are You Yelling?

For some reason some people feel they should scream into their cell phone. Consider when you have a live conversation with someone. Usually, in a public place, you keep your conversation between the two of you at a respectable volume level. Yet, when you answer your cell phone, a natural tendency to raise your voice can develop. Be aware of your surroundings and speak as if you were sitting next to the person. If you can, step away from nearby ears so no one hears you make an appointment with your proctologist.

Take a Pit Stop

Walking while texting takes talent but it freaks everyone else out. Driving while texting has been documented as more dangerous than drinking and driving. When you walk or drive and text, pull over and finish. If it is a conversation about nothing, kindly tell the person you will get back to them later. The biggest offense is climbing or descending stairs with your head in your device moving at half the speed as everyone else. Total idiot move.  At least apologize when someone asks you to get on with it, even if they are rude, because approaching impolite with polite should not be expected.

Look Up

It has become common practice to dive into our phones in the middle of a conversation breaking eye contact and concentrating on something else. We all need to stay plugged-in but we can also integrate some niceties that may make our actions less coarse.

• Importance – When you meet someone face to face apologize that you must check your phone now and again for an important, expected message.

• Voicemail – Record that you are in a meeting on your outgoing voicemail and put your phone on silent.

• Impulse – If none of the above work, simply do what you do and expect it from others.


A few years ago a student was taken out by a backhoe in New York City because her mp3 was blasting in her headphones. Know when to stop the music and pay attention.

There are scores of other digital etiquette do’s and don’ts but the main thing is to stop and think. Immediacy and instant gratification are way less important than looking like a jerk.


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