New Rules of Social Networking 2.0

Every social network site, every group on their sites, and most update and wall posts now have a ton of RULES.

—Don't talk about politics, social issues, religion or anything that really matters.

—Don't sell or spam yourself. Only CONVERSE to promote your name, brand or company (though most are online to do just that).

—Find someone else to promote your work for you. Have a lot of friends and relatives chat you up, and/or recommendations by Random House are acceptable. (Corporations have direct sell rights individuals do not.)

—Don't attached links that give the reader the choice to click or not on any given bit that catches their interest. Limit links, if allowed at all now, to only what the admin/s deem relevant.

—Don't post ANYTHING the admin/s making the rules for the group don't agree with.

—Discuss marketing ad nauseum, talk endlessly about what works, while promoting prowess with fabricated or wildly exaggerated results.

—Promote viral viewing of YouTube's latest 'squirrel playing the piano’ video, instead of our candidates and representatives giving their positions on issues.

—Don’t dis anyone for anything online, ever. Never publicize a personal dispute even if you know other fools will sadly suffer your undisclosed experience.

—Keep updates and wall post positive, light, upbeat. Fear and loathing are only acceptably instilled by politicians and the press.

—Keep it simple. Posts, blogs, and other social media forums require the writing to be basic, on subjects easy to comprehend to reach the greatest number of readers. (The NY Times is admittedly written for high school level.)

The above list is a mere hint at the torrent of recent rules, regulations and etiquette standards now flooding every social network site.

With great power comes great responsibility.

The internet is power, or can be. We’ve all seen it win elections, make someone famous overnight (sometimes even lasting), launch companies, generate billions, and the potential is endless, and dangerous, but also glorious. The internet has connected the world.

We all have the power, as individuals now, to make a difference and change our future as a global community. Speak out! Don’t let the new order of power-hungry admins and corporations dictating online decorum to prevail. If you have something to say you believe of relevance to...well...the world, write it and put it out there. Don’t be intimidated by etiquette rhetoric. The internet can only reach the true glory of its potential—to unite us, not by limiting our choices but keeping cyberspace an open forum of communication for everyone.

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