New book of golden rules
Etiquette coach William Hanson’s golden rules:
1 Before posting or sending anything, think “would I be happy for my parents to see this?”
2 Your profile picture should feature only your face
3 Feeling blue? Pick up the phone and speak to a human – don’t share your sorrow online 4 Don’t believe everything you see online: remember it is heavily filtered 5 Social media and technology are there to complement our lives, not replace them ing photographs and saying things that sometimes they ought not to.”
Mr Sykes, who said the social media etiquette course had proven “very popular”, believes the module is important to help children learn manners.
He said: “We ask them how they would feel if they saw that particular picture, or read a certain comment, about themselves that they could have posted about someone else. How would that make them feel?
“Manners is about other people. It’s not about ‘me me me’ – we have a lot of that attitude in society. This is about thinking about other people.”
William Hanson, a leading British etiquette coach who teaches all over the world, introduced a social media etiquette course two years ago. His golden mantra is, “tweet others how you want to be tweeted”.
He said: “There’s all sorts of awful things that have happened because of what is said on social media. Etiquette coaches are just one of many people who play a part in teaching people how to behave on it.
“Good manners are about treating people with respect, but there are lots of people who don’t.
“Just like we judge people in real life by their clothes, hairstyle and handshake, we can judge a lot about somebody by what they have put on their social media profile.”
Mr Hanson, 29, who charges £450 for half a day’s home tuition, spends the sessions going through a child’s social media profile and telling them the do’s and don’ts of online behaviour.
“Etiquette has always evolved over time to modern conditions. When the telephone came in at the turn of the 19th century, there was an etiquette guide of how to talk on it,” he said.
“It’s no longer just about walking with a book on your head, flower arranging or how to get out of a car. It’s about how to present yourself correctly online, especially because so much of our lives are online now.”