Online Community Rituals: Social Niceties and Change

Every social network has it’s way of saying, showing, and responding to regular patterns of behaviour. 

This is one of the little stories I tell in class. I can’t remember where I first heard/read it, but whether it’s true or not, I think it highlights something (not sure what :P) 

Father to Son: Why did you email your Grandmother when GrandUncle died? How rude! 

Son to Father: Because I didn’t think she would like an SMS Message I took time to write out an email! 

Father to Son: Well, you should have rung her on the telephone


Grandmother to her son (the Father): Why did you ring me on the phone? In my day, we wrote hand wrote a condolence letter on appropriate paper… 

On Twitter? @SilkCharm Soz 4 yr loss.



Each social network (including generation ones) has it’s own rituals. on Twitter, don’t fill the screen up with 

@SilkCharm Thanks!

@SilkCharm Thanks for following

@SilkCharm nope.

It’s just not that interesting, and out of context for your readers. 

.. but do make sure you 

blah blah blah ht @SilkCharm (hat tip or acknowledge) 

rt @SilkCharm (copy and paste as a hat tip) blah blah blah

See?  Why companies don’t take 5 minutes to figure this stuff out, before they jump in with both boots on, I dunno. Find marketing folk with sociology, anthropology or digital ethnography backgrounds, maybe?

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

11 thoughts on “Online Community Rituals: Social Niceties and Change

  1. social network rituals http://twurl.nl/k0h6xa what is a “social nicety” in one community might be inappropriate in another community

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