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Awesome Etiquette: Turn Off That Camera, Please

Video chatting can be fun and useful, but remember to be respectful of those around you who might not want to be caught on camera.
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Video chatting can be fun and useful, but remember to be respectful of those around you who might not want to be caught on camera.

Video chatting through FaceTime, Skype and other apps has become a popular form of communication. But what about those around you who may not feel comfortable being on camera or in the conversation? As electronic devices become more deeply embedded in our lives, we find ourselves faced with more concerns about e-etiquette. 

A listener shared that her husband likes to FaceTime with people while walking around the house and often asks her to say hello to whomever he's video chatting with. She finds this to be stressful if she's not dressed appropriately or if the house is messy. Without trying to dictate his behavior, she needs to share how a roaming camera causes her to feel as though there's always an unexpected guest in the house.

Video chats can be a lot of fun, especially with friends and family who live far away. They can also keep grandparents connected with grandchildren; however, there are some guidelines to follow.

Many of us like to have control over when and where video chats take place. If that's you, talk with your spouse, family members or roommates about keeping video chats to certain rooms. Let them know that you have the right to opt out of the conversation if you're unprepared or not up for it. 

For those who enjoy going face to face on a device, be respectful of those around you. Use the camera that only faces you rather than a forward-facing camera that shows the entire room. This will relieve any pressure others might feel while still allowing you to get your FaceTime fix. 

If you have an etiquette question for us, send it to:  awesomeetiquette@emilypost.com

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