1 May 2020
Communication in the virtual realm is mainly textual. Therefore, the benefits of facial expression, tone and intonation are lost to us. The direct result can be poor communication which can lead to misunderstandings and, in turn, some hurt feelings.
This anonymity can be perceived as a lack of commitment to one another. Nevertheless, most internet users expect that agreements, laws and conventions that exist in the 'real world' will apply in the virtual realm as well. This realm should be seen as extension of the physical reality rather than a new, separate world with a separate set of rules.
This understanding has led to the newly coined term Netiquette, an amalgam of 'net' and etiquette. This term refers to standards and rules of conduct to be followed in this virtual situation.
Its purpose is defining a behavioral standard for online conduct by determining what is permitted, what is prohibited and what is fair. Its ultimate goal is to enable safe use of the web and positive, accurate communication with other users. This universal set of rules is relevant even when national borders are seemingly nonexistent. It addresses the upholding of individual rights, copyright infringement, harassment on the web, and the prevention of child exploitation, etc.