I haven't been on the internet for very long, although in today's super-fast informational Autobahn, 5 years is an eternity. In those 5 years, however, I've noticed some things about internet discussions, both in my own behavior, and in that of others. But the most distressing things are two-fold: one is a complete lack of decorum in the sense of tact, politeness, and generosity, especially regarding positions that differ from ours. The other is a distressing tendency to hit "post" before the brain actually ever engages in terms of the consequences of the post. I have some thoughts about this, in no particular order. 1. Never say anything about anyone else that you wouldn't be comfortable saying to them in person. This simple rule would probably eliminate 90% of internet fracases. 2. Consider that the entire world can read what you wrote, most of the time. On the PB, we do have members only sectors, but those should still be treated as an open book. There is such a thing as copy and paste. 3. Consider that no one can review what you wrote in most cases. This is not peer-reviewed scholarship, most of the time, at least before it is posted. It might become reviewed afterwards, but it it isn't beforehand. 4. Ask yourself this question: does this post guard and protect my internet neighbor's good name? The internet has a huge potential for good or harm, more so than almost any other media except television, and it's giving TV a run for its money. Everything is simply out there. 5. Have I thought through the implications of what will happen after I hit the "post" button? Imagine the reaction of the person it most highly affects. Try to see the issue from the other person's shoes. 6. Have I loved this person through what I am saying to that person? Never write a post in anger. If you are angry with something that someone else has written, do not reply until you can write with a cool head. Otherwise, you will almost certainly overstate the case, thus polarizing the other person into a defensive mode.