Vetbook uses a Wikichat format uniquely designed for Vetbook users, enable veterinarians to chat online with other 'friended' users. This feature is to enable veterinarians to connect with other users in an informal communication style to further collegiate interactions within the veterinary community. Vetbook chat should not be used as a social tool such as Facebook and instead is meant for talking about professional material only. Chatiquette varies from community to community, generally describing basic courtesy; it introduces new user into the community and the associated network culture. As an example, it is considered rude to write only in upper case, because it looks as if the user is shouting.
- Remember that not everyone is chatting on the same time zone you are, and that your native language may not be the primary language of everyone in the chatroom.
- Chats are informal and similar to an in-person conversation, so don't be overly concerned about spelling and grammar during a chat. It is more important that the chat flow at a good pace than that the exact "King's English" be used. It is typical and ok to misspell some things and make some typos in the course of the conversation. As long as the word or phrase in total is recognizable, it is fine to continue.
- Be patient. Don't repeat yourself; instead, wait for a reply to your post. Remember, some people type with two fingers, some with ten and some with ten fingers and ten toes. The speed of participants' connections can also slow down responses. Your facilitator will keep track of comments posted and make sure that everyone's voice is heard.
- Do not SHOUT. Use of capitals must be limited as it is considered rude.
- If you disagree with something someone says during chat, be diplomatic and polite in answering. Try to find the good points made, acknowledge them and then respectfully describe the areas where you disagree. Following these suggestions will result in the most productive discussions.
- Do not worry about correcting typographical errors. They are expected, and can actually be a source of humor for everyone.
- Flirting and sexual comments and/or requests are NOT appropriate in educational chat rooms.
- Abuse of Vetbook chatiquette protocols results in the user and their I.P. address being blocked.