Etiquette on IRC
People on IRC form their opinions about you only by your actions, writings
and comments, so think before you type. If you use offensive words, you'll be
frowned upon. Please behave as you would in real life.
There are differences, though. For example, it's not necessary to greet everybody
on a channel personally. Usually one "Hello!" or equivalent is enough.
And don't expect everybody to greet you back. On a channel with 20 people that
would mean one screenful of hellos. It's sensible not to greet, in order not
to be rude to the rest of the channel. If you must say hello to somebody you
know, do it with a private message. The same applies to goodbyes.
Also note that using the event response feature, or an Action, to automatically
say hello or goodbye to people is extremely poor etiquette. Nobody wants to
receive autogreets. They are not only obviously automatic, but even if you think
you are polite you are actually sounding insincere and also interfering with
the personal environment of the recipient when using autogreets.
Do not "dump" to a channel or user, (send large amounts of unwanted
information). This is likely to get you kicked off the channel or thrown entirely
off IRC. Dumping causes network "burps" and connections going down because
servers cannot handle the large spikes of traffic.
Never take offense if somebody appears to snub you by ignoring output from
you. Bear in mind that there are ninety-nine possible technical reasons for
this, among which is the possibility that he or she may not even be looking
at the screen at the moment.
The most widely understood and spoken language on IRC is English. However,
as IRC is used in many different countries, English is by no means the only
language. If you want to speak some other language than English, (for example
with your friends), go to a separate channel and set the topic to indicate which
language to use.
You should check the topic before speaking to see if there are any restrictions
about language. On a non-restricted channel, please speak a language everybody
can understand. If you want to do otherwise, change channels and set the topic
There is remarkably little tolerance for foreign languages on IRC channels, and
with good reason. If you would like to practice your Spanish there is a large
number of Spanish speaking channels you can go to. Do not go to an English speaking
channel and start to speak in Spanish or any other language. That is downright
You should not criticize or draw attention to other peoples spelling or grammar.
In the first place, its ludicrous to expect anybody to work at a computer
keyboard in a "live" situation without errors but more importantly
you have no idea whether the person you criticize is fluent in the language being
used, or even marginally literate.
Other prohibited and discouraged actions include:
- Any behavior reducing the functionality of IRC.
- Harassing another user. Harassment is defined as behavior towards another
user with the purpose of annoying them.
- Annoying a channel with constant beeping, face getting and version or gestalt
requests. Odds are that behavior like that will get you kicked.
- Many channels frown on excessive use of color or use of color at all. Colored
messages often cause problems for people that have a background color set
up. Black is very popular for example.
- If you have a question to ask the channel, do not ask if you can ask the
question! Just ask it, and if someone feels like answering you'll get an answer.
If not, then please do not keep repeating the question. They heard you the