Here are the rules I use on Facebook, especially when a conversation gets robust.
- Disagree without being disagreeable. Never resort to name calling or online sledging. Leave that to AFL footballers and brogans.
- Never say ‘Yes, but…’. A but negates everything said immediately prior so just get to the point. There’s no need to butter people up.
- Don’t generalise.Avoid making broad, sweeping statements such as “Everyone knows you don’t believe that!”
- Don’t respond to trolls. Trolls thrive on the attention they get making inflammatory and derogatory remarks. Leave them be and let their rubbish slip off the bottom of the newsfeed.
- Have thick skinSome stuff I see on Facebook can be downright galling. Best to let these short pitched deliveries through to the keeper.
- Don’t assume what another person is thinking and especially don’t put those thoughts in writing. A statement such as ‘clearly you’ve missed my point’ assumes something that’s not possible to know.
- Don’t respond angry. The worst damage is always done when the blood pressure is up. Calm down first.
What rules do you use?