If you’ve ever gotten into a heated discussion on Facebook or Twitter, you know it can be difficult to get your point across successfully.
We’ve put together a quick list of “do’s and don’ts” for debating the big issues on social media platforms. Have a read of our suggestions and share your etiquette tips in the comments below.
Don’t let yourself get carried away. While it’s easy to let emotions get the best of you, especially on topics you feel passionately about, the key to making a good argument is staying calm.
Take a deep breath, step away from your computer if necessary, but don’t reply in haste or you may end up typing something you’ll regret.
It can be tough to make an important point on social media, especially if you’re on a platform that limits the length of posts. Don’t be afraid to ask someone to expand on a point before you respond. You may find more information changes your perspective, or gives you a better angle to argue against.
Trolls gonna troll. Don’t let yourself rise to obviously inflammatory comments that are only designed to provoke others. If you do, you’re giving the trolls what they wanted.
Pick your battles — if you suspect someone is just trying to get a rise out of you, don’t give him or her the satisfaction.
The old adage that manners cost nothing still holds true on social media. Even if you just want to tell some to piss off in no uncertain terms, it pays to be polite.
Apart from keeping your dignity and upholding some basic principles of decency, your argument will have more authority if it’s presented in a polite way.
Finally, know when to remove yourself from the situation. If you’ve made your point and someone insists on letting the discussion drag on, make a graceful exit. You don’t always have to have the last word.
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