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“Pandetiquette” tips for interacting on social media

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MGN Image 05-18-2020

Eau Claire (WQOW) - Many people share their thoughts on social media, especially about topics surrounding the coronavirus outbreak, but sometimes those ideas aren't exchanged in a friendly manner.

Justin Patchin, a professor at UW-Eau Claire, is the co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center. He said he came up with the phrase "pandetiquette" when reading articles on social media related to COVID-19.

Often times he'd see people in the comment section resort to name-calling, threats and other disrespectful behavior. Before engaging with others online, Patchin said it's best to consider your relationship with the person.

If it's a friend or family member who you disagree with, then Patchin encourages you to offer your opinion in a respectful way. If it's a stranger you think will not value your insight, then sometimes it's best to just keep scrolling.

Patchin also said it's important to verify the authenticity of the information.

"Do your own research," said Patchin. "Try to figure out what the primary source of that information is, whether it's a statistic or an expert opinion, or an anecdote. Don't rely on someone else's repeating of someone else's experience that they heard from somebody else. Go to that primary source and get the information from there."

Patchin has written extensive articles on 'pandetiquette' and how to verify information.

Click here for part 1 of his 'pandetiquette' tips, and here for part 2, which talks about countering misinformation and fact-checking websites.

Katrina Lim

Katrina Lim joined the News 18 team in August 2019 as a multimedia journalist. She was born and raised in Jersey City, New Jersey but has lived in all time zones of the contiguous U.S.A.

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