tariel22 (tariel22) wrote,

My top ten questions about LJ etiquette.

I've been pondering the subject of LJ etiquette lately, and some entries and comments I've read in my wanderings recently made me decide to post this. I want to find out how people feel about a number of different issues. Are my reactions to things normal or crazy? I need a sounding board, people! So take a look at my questions below, and comment at will. If you know anyone else with opinions on this subject, invite them over too. I'm really trying to hear all sides, so the more the merrier!

Please be honest! I promise I can take it. Behind the cut because it's really, really long. What? Are you telling me this surprises you? Have you met me? :)

1) Do you mind if I read your Friends Page?

When I first joined LJ, I didn't have any friends here. I was a big time lurker all over the internet, always too chicken to post. I joined here because I loved anteka's PWT and wanted to comment to express my appreciation. She generously friended me right away, as did whimsywinx. And if you look back at my early posts, for a long time it was just me and Whimsy. She would stop by every day and comment on my posts; I honestly don't think I would have stuck with it if it hadn't been for her. *smishes Whimsy*

Anyway, until I made some friends of my own, I totally stalked anteka's Friends Page. Sometimes I'd swoop in and randomly comment on one of her friends' journals, but mostly I discovered lots of places on LJ to go explore on my own. Which ultimately led me to communities and friends of my own. All good, I thought, especially because I was only reading public posts, obviously. But recently I read an entry where someone described this activity as creepy, lame, and rude. What do you think? Do you mind if someone else reads your Friends Page?

2) May I comment on your comment?

I like to think of my journal as a conversation. People comment, others chime in, and we all have fun. I like short comments, long comments, people who come by every day, or people who occasionally drop in as they zoom by. Everybody's welcome, and I hope we all get along. And if two people randomly connect and make friends because they discovered each other in my journal, that's the greatest thing ever. However, not everyone feels this way.

Some people have a more linear approach, and rules. Big time rules. Such as, you may only address your comments to the person whose journal you're reading, and only that person can answer you back. Also, make sure to keep your comments short, because this journal isn't about you, after all. Doing otherwise is known as hijacking someone else's journal. The worst offense is when someone asks a question in your comments, and someone else answers it. That one I can see, but it depends on the question and how it's worded.

Well, anyone who knows me knows I tend to write ridiculously long comments, and I'm liable to reply to anything. I guess I'm just starved for conversation, guys! But I certainly have the capacity to restrain myself if it's irritating. How do you feel about how people comment in your journal?

3) May I come back over and over and read all your comments?

When one of you posts something that interests me, I also like to see what everyone else thinks, so I tend to come back to read your post again and again as more comments are added. I never thought there was anything wrong with this, especially because LJ offers the Track This button, which is exactly for this purpose. And yet I've seen people mention it as something that makes them uncomfortable. Do you care if I stalk your journal?

4) Do you think all comments need to be answered?

I try to acknowledge the first comment that anyone makes on one of my posts, and then let the thread continue, or not, naturally. I want you to know that I appreciate that you're taking the time to read my journal and comment, plus there's usually something in your comment to which I want to respond anyway. What do you think? Does every comment need or deserve a reply?

5) How do you feel about lurkers?

As a huge lurker myself, I totally get it. I'm shy, I often think I have nothing interesting to say, and it's intimidating to post on the journal of someone I don't know. It's like I think their reply will be, "Who the hell are you, and how dare you comment on my journal?!" LOL! If you're lurking here, you're more than welcome, but I'd also love to meet you. How does everyone else feel about lurkers?

On a related note, I don't always comment on my friends' posts. Sometimes I just don't feel like I have anything to add to the conversation, and sometimes I honestly don't know what to say, so I err on the side of caution and don't say anything. Is that okay with you?

6) What about "bad" language?

First of all, of course, anyone can say whatever they want in their own journal. Duh. If you find what they say offensive, don't read it (I'm not talking about harmful, inflammatory rhetoric here, just word choices). What I'm wondering about is the use of colorful language in comments. In general, I'm not going to swear in your journal unless I see you do it first, but I am inordinately fond of the f-word, so look out, especially if I'm ranting. :) How do you feel when you see those words in your comments?

7) How do you feel about the lj-cut?

My flist is pretty equally divided between Smallville fans and Supernatural fans, with a couple of crossover fans like me. That means that any given post of mine is of no interest to at least half of my flist, depending on the subject matter. To avoid cluttering up your Friends Page with endless posts about which you couldn't care less, I put anything longer than a paragraph behind a cut. Recently I saw someone say (not about me) that it's a pain to have to click on the cut and go to a different page, and then go back when you're finished. What do you think?

And related to this, does anyone know how to make the lj-cut link go to a page that opens up in a new window, that you can simply close when you're finished with it, so that you can instantly go back to your starting point on your Friends Page (instead of using the back button and waiting for it to reload)? Does this make sense? It's the way links work on TWoP.

8) What about internet-speak?

This is one I'm just curious about. I know I throw around way too many OMGs and LOLs, but for the most part I make an effort to use proper spelling, punctuation, and capitalization. But that's just my kink, so to speak, I certainly don't expect or want others to worry about such things. I'm just glad we're talking! I will admit that sometimes I honestly don't know what someone is trying to say, at which point I feel both stupid and old. :P What do you think (about internet-speak, not how old and stupid I am)?

9) May I steal your userpic?

How do you feel about people ganking your icons? Here's my policy when I see an icon after which I lust: First I go to your userpic page, to see who made it (if it's uncredited, I drop it right there). Then I go to that person's journal and look for icon posts. If I find it, I'll snag it, with a comment and credit on my own userpic page. If I don't, and I really want it, I might go back and ask you if it's shareable. If, when I check, I find out you made the icon yourself, I'll poke around your journal to see if you've ever offered it up in an icon post where I can grab and comment. If not, that's usually as far as I go. I think icons are little works of art, and in that way are personal, so I try to respect that. The exception to my rule is angieb5, who for some reason inspires me to beg her for icons constantly! LOL! Maybe it's because we met over her Dr. Seuss icons in anteka's journal. Anyway, how do you feel about people grabbing icons from your userpic page?

For the record, if I compliment you on your icon, that does not mean I am hinting that you share it with me!! It just means I think it's beautiful, or funny, or perfect for your comment, okay?

10) What is your friending policy?

Do you automatically friend everyone who friends you? Are you notoriously selective? Do you friend first, or wait to be friended? If someone friends me, I head over to their journal and check it out. I look at their journal, their user info, and their userpics, and as long as we have something in common, I'll friend back right away. If they never post to their journal, or anything gives me a funny feeling, I kind of wait and see, and I may or may not friend back in the future. Sometimes I friend people, like fic writers or icon makers, to stay current with their work, and I don't expect them to friend me back unless we hit it off in their comments or something. I love finding friends through friends, where I agree with another person's comment, and then we find out we have lots in common. What about you? What's your deal with friending?

Okay, I think that's it! I think this is the longest entry I've ever posted. If you made it all the way to the end, thanks for reading! I can't wait to find out what everyone else thinks.
Tags: livejournal
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