Blogginq Etiquette: Are You Doing the Right Thing When It Comes to Social Media?


I've always been concerned with being polite and exercising proper reciprocity when it comes to manners; someone sends you a gift, you send them a thank you note (or email, or text); a friend does you a favor, and you try to return it by taking them out to dinner or buying them a cup of coffee.  It gets a little hazy, however, in the online world and with social media, as there doesn't seem to be a clearly defined set rules for dos and don'ts on this platform. Until I decide to assume the role as the Emily Post of the blogosphere, I've put together a quick list of situations and my hypothesis on proper etiquette for each, which is really just based on speculation and experience as to what I feel could be the right thing to do:

If someone retweets something of yours or Likes or Favorites it, do you say thank you?

I say yes — it really takes two seconds to acknowledge someone's attention to, and in some ways, endorsement of, something that you are doing, think, or are promoting, so I think it's only right to send them a quick little thank you. Especially if you have a relationship with them outside of the online world. If you receive a ton of retweets, likes, favorites, etc, and thanking each person individually feels silly or unmanageable, you can always send a mass thank you; think about what other people do in this instance, and it seems that this is a popular choice when one received a ton of well-wishes or likes on Facebook.

If someone comments on your blog post, and he/she has a blog of his/her own, should you comment there as well?

Again, I say yes — you don't have to do it right away, but make it more of an organic pay-it-foward.  Sometime within the week, pay attention to what he/she is posting, and leave a comment on a post that genuinely interests you, or at the very least, click on the button to tweet it out via your feed, with a comment there instead. I believe it's just good karma to return the favor in some way, shape, or form!

If Facebook friends start following your feed on Instagram, should you follow the back?

For this instance, I say no; with Facebook, you don't have to let every single person who “friends” you see all of your information or end up in your daily feed, however, with Instagram, you can't have them as someone you follow and not see what they post. I find that Instagram is a more personable, intimate biography of your life online, and although it's told through images, that doesn't necessarily make it an experience that you have to share with people you may barely know on Facebook, or of more of a concern for me,  see their posts in your singular Instagram feed.

When attending an event, reviewing product, or participating in a promotion and a hashtag is provided, should you feel obligated to use it in a Tweet/Instagram/Foursquare check-in, etc?

I think there is an unspoken understanding that yes, it is rather expected/asked of you to share to your followers from your point of view by using the given hashtag.

I don't mean for you to do it ad nauseam, but I think just once will certainly suffice. If the hashtag/twitter handle is prominently displayed as part of the note to you from the publicist or visible at the event, I think you definitely should find a way to share what you are seeing/doing in a way that fits your style and voice. It depends on what I'm doing and feeling, if I will tweet during or after an event, but if I experience something that I really am into and want to share with readers, I will certainly share some of my enthusiasm via social media, and tag the brand/person/designer/ event.

What say you? Do you agree with the following etiquette or have another example you'd like to bring up for debate?
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About The Author

Blogging at her site Fashion Pulse Daily since 2008 and working on fashion's editorial side since 2003 has lent Julia the acumen to think creatively and endure in the colliding worlds of blogging, fashion and beauty. New York City is her backdrop for inspiration (and many a outfit photo), where she is often found on her couch, feverishly typing away at her latest post, with her trusty feline at her side. Follow her on Instagram , Twitter, and Pinterest.

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23 Responses

  1. Melissa

    I totally agree. Showing love online will make people want to check out your blogs and social networks. I respond to every single email, comment, tweet, etc…. I’m slowly but surely gaining more viewers and more feedback 🙂


  2. typewriter poetry

    Great list! I’m a little torn on the first one. I’ve always distrusted the obligatory ‘thank you,’ especially when it feels a bit redundant. I find it helps to show clever ways to show your thanks in those situations, which sometimes eschews an outright thank you message.

    Thank you for the tips! 🙂 I’m new to instagram, so I’ve been using the typical ‘follow back’ method, which I think I need to re-examine, lol.

  3. Ayesha A.K.

    and typos! just saw mine and I guess one should not make too many typos or grammatical errors.

    • Stacey

      🙂 It drives me crazy when I see typos on blogs. I’ve had my share after posting articles, but everyone makes mistakes!

  4. TlvBirdie

    Good article, and totally useful! Karma is THE thing in bloggers society;)
    What about instagram, I started mine with private name very long time ago, and collected followers from all over the world that found my life interesting, then I started blogging and sharing spoilers of posts on the blog, and pics from bloggers events there etc(without changing my name to blog’s name and opening new account for blog’s media only), and somehow I gained that kind of harmony that blog is a part of my life, and my insta followers consist from close friends, people who are interested in me personally and people who are following my blog. Maybe I feel comfortable with that because my blog represents me personally, my life style and my way of seeing style, so Instagram for me stopped being “an intimate” visual diary for long long time ago.. Someone feels the same?

    Olya from TLV Birdie

    • julia dinardo

      Thanks TlvBirdie; I think, however it feels right to you; I grapple with switching things to my name or having another account in my name for more personal stuff, but I think it’s great that you can do both in one!

  5. Joan M.

    So glad i’m doing it all, i always respond because if that person take their time to write in my facebook,blog or instagram, i think is important for us to take the time and write a thank you at least, it shows that you really care about your readers…


  6. Stacey

    What are your thoughts on responding to comments/questions people post on your blog in response to an article you wrote? I notice a lot of bloggers don’t respond to questions. I understand not responding to every comment, but when someone asks you a direct question on your blog, I think you should respond.

  7. Asia Mays

    I agree! Showing love to those who have shown you love is super simple and it goes a long way.

    Great read.

  8. Eva Tornado

    I have too much spammers’ comments… People who visit me again and again and every time propose “to follow each other” like they have never seen my blog before. I will neither visit them nor follow back.

  9. April F

    thank you for that. I am new to this and feel a bit confused
    I will keep this in mind

  10. Paige

    I agree with everything in this article. I think commenting back on other blogs and saying thank is great. As for following on social media, you should only do it if you genuinely like the person or blog.

  11. moiminnie

    Personally, if someone shares my photos or features me, I always say thanks and share that post, especially if it’s beautifully done. I try to always reply, whether it’s praise or critique, it’s just a polite thing to do. As for commenting, I do it when I’m moved by the content and really have something to say about it (“follow for follow” or “nice photos” comments make me sick). I usually don’t follow back unless I really enjoy the blog/ twitter/ instagram/ fb feed.
    This a great reminder for all of us, even if we do it regularly!

    minnie @


  12. Kelly

    Great article. I believe it’s totally the right thing to do to respond to someone’s comment, comment on their blog, thank them for tweets…etc. They’re supporting you and it’s rude to not acknowledge it. It’s always important to ‘mind our manners’ <3