Feeding myself on connectivity and bandwidth for ages, IMs have become as crucial part of my daily dose as the mobile phones. I mean I have more active contacts on my Gtalk & YM lists than on mobile phone. Lately with increasing contacts and random people appearing in my contact list and I seriously bugged by how people behave on Chat. So here I spill the beans of my 10 paise of wisdom on (I wanted to throw 5 pence but I still get my emoluments in INR) Chattiquettes

  1. While adding someone- if you are adding me on your chatting list it is really a good idea to send an IM or a mail telling who you are and why you would like to speak to me (especially if you met me 5 years ago in a party when I was seven drinks down I hardly think your name would ring a bell). Especially if your chat id is then you need to know I would be in no interest to be in conversations with some jerk of order first until you specify who you are.
  2. The Busy Sign- You know all the IMs come with some signs which indicate the recipient is Busy (Gtalk has red and green dots next to the name, Yahoo has a red color dash against the person’s smiley icon), so they are not just for the color blindness test but are meant for some rather larger purpose in life. When you find a busy sign next to my name it is a good idea to check first that whether I am in a state to talk or not. Your ‘Howdy’ and ‘My 3rd girlfriend’s 2nd ex boyfriend is an ass’ kind of message might be an irritant in the work I am doing.
  3. Perennially Busy- if you always keep you IM to busy then I think you should sign out and try to complete the work first. I mean it’s perfectly understandable your need to announce publically that the work is killing you and you are working your backside off and somehow you are still alive (and everyone wonders why you are) but apart from it people would stop respecting to your busyness. So for heaven’s sake put the sign when you are actually busy and want people to confirm your availability to talk.
  4. What’s New/Aur Kya syndrome- If this is a frequent occurrence in the conversation with me then boy you need to understand neither I am George Bush who would come up with I bombed after every ten minutes nor I am the Superman (trust me I might look as good as him but You would never find me wearing my underpants over my pants) who would tell you I saved the earth from and not even a cinema hall which changes the show every 3 hours. I am sorry to say I am boring and dull person who has a routine life and if something new happens I am the first one who would announce it on this very blog, twitter and mails. So if the first answer was ‘Nothing New’ then trust me answer wouldn’t change much in another 15 minutes.
  5. Secret messages- The status messages are you know kind of Public Announcement system the message is meant for everyone who is intentionally or accidentally in your IM list. So if someone asks what your message is all about and you reply “Ohhh! It is not for you, it is meant only for me and her” than trust me you are acting like a jerk, if you need to send across a message across to a specific audience in your IM list. There is a tool invented by Mr. Raymond Samuel Tomlinson, and it is called an E-Mail and it also has a subject line you can post the messages distinguishably to the selective recipients.
  6. The disappearing acts- If you are the one like the Chershire Cat who loves to appear and disappear unannounced, you must understand it is not even close to amusing. I know there are some calls very difficult to control and stop midway but saying a message like “back after some time” or “Be Right Back” or “talk to you later” would actually be convenient for the moron typing frivolously at the other end. I know you are very busy and there are hazaar things calling for your attention but it’s always pleasant & comfortable for the guy on the other end.
  7. Prompt Replies- You are busy, and so is everyone else. It doesn’t bring the earth crashing down upon you if you reply to a ping. Saying “Busy TTUL” takes just 8 characters and some 5 seconds to convey the message across. It just might be the person is counting on you for something important. By the way if you are too busy with something then what are you doing online. I mean I understand the need for connectivity but having an internet connection and IM doesn’t makes you Pervez Musharraf that you will only budge to American threats.
  8. Voice Chat- Hello people I live in a country called India where we fight out our life for love, peace and an extra MB of bandwidth. The voice conference over my internet connection sucks big time and yes I don’t even have a microphone. So next time when you ping me from the phoren Land be prepared to type.
  9. Block- If you are blocked in my messenger list then trust me I would have a very good reason to do so. So don’t ask me why did I block you until and unless you want me to rape you or go on an insulting spree. There is a technique called introspection, follow the same and you would get all your answers. (Even then you don’t get the answer, ok let me state it for you I AM TRYING TO AVOID TALKING TO YOU. No I wasn’t trying to test the Block feature of my IM absolutely not I already know how to works)
  10. Taking for Granted- If you have an internet connection and an instant messenger Id doesn’t mean they have hired me as their personal entertainer. I have all the rights to give non conversational answers and ignore your presence in my life. I have a life beyond IMs and have a friends’ list beyond you. So next time don’t ever try to take me for granted.

These were my 10 paise on the etiquettes of the IM. If you found this article rude yes it was meant to be this way.

p.s.: All these chattiquettes are not meant for close buddies and they know their liberties.

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