Somebody’s gotta say it: rules we shouldn’t have to say but do

by My Jag News Staff

Social Media

  1. Always check with the people in your pictures before posting.
  2. If you wouldn’t say it in person, don’t say it online.
  3. Don’t put uncomfortable things in your stories – politics, things about personal relationships, crude humor, or anything simply TMI.
  4. Always log out of a public computer.
  5. If you’re DMing someone you don’t know, don’t ask overly personal questions or trauma dump. It’s okay to DM people, just don’t be weird about it.
  6. Don’t post or share DMs without permission.
  7. Don’t spam someone’s comments or DMs.
  8. It’s weird to like people’s old posts. If you’re stalking through someone’s Instagram, don’t accidentally like anything.
  9. It’s rude to leave people on seen. At the very least, make sure to like their DM.
  10. If someone ghosts or blocks you, don’t use other accounts to talk to them.
  11. If you want to share an excessive amount of information on your story, make it private. Be aware of your audience – grandma doesn’t want to see a million Euphoria edits you found on TikTok.
  12. If accept a follow request from a private account, follow them back.
  13. If you see someone being rude or inappropriate online, report them. It’s still bullying, even if it’s online. Don’t just be a bystander.
  14. If you’re watching something online with other people around, put your headphones on.
  15. If you post and there’s a lot of comments, either don’t respond to anyone’s, or like all of them.
  16. Default to having your read receipts off.


  1. When people put on their turn signal and want to enter your line, LET THEM IN. The line should work like a zipper!
  2. Don’t mess with other people’s cars. Specifically, stop pulling up their windshield wipers. You could actually break them.
  3. Don’t roll your window down to talk to people in other cars. It takes up time and holds up the line. Just talk to them later.
  4. Your car horn is a safety feature, not a funny sound effect.
  5. Don’t cut in line.
  6. If you’re picking someone up, don’t block people into their parking spots. People have jobs, and need to leave to get to them on time. If the student you’re picking up will be awhile, just park.
  7. Be patient with others. We’re all still relatively new to driving, so there’s no need to get upset when it takes people a little longer to figure out what they’re doing.

Outings with friends

  1. Don’t split the check if there’s less than three people. Just pay the person back who covers the check, and pay for your portion of the bill. Splitting the bill evenly is unfair when one person only got an appetizer and another got a three-course meal.
  2. Make sure everyone pulls their weight and take turns driving, unless someone prefers driving or there is an unsafe driver. Remember, you can at least offer gas money.
  3. Always tip 20 percent or more – other people are broke besides just teenagers. Minimum wage workers have it rough, so just pay them well.
  4. Don’t bring more than six people. If there’s more, reserve a table, because there’s apps to do that.
  5. Make sure everyone involved gets along and feels included. Leave conversation open to all.
  6. Pick a place that is in close proximity to everyone. Some people aren’t allowed to drive, plus it’s less gas money.
  7. Always text when you’re on the way to the function.
  8. If there are girls in the group, stick together when using the bathroom, or wait outside of the restroom for them.
  9. Don’t leave your beverage unattended.
  10. If you’re taking pictures together, make sure no strangers are in the background and all friends are in the picture.
  11. Wait for everyone to order, and wait for everyone to eat.
  12. Don’t rush anyone, but also don’t take too long eating.
  13. If someone is anxious, take care of them and order for them.
  14. Don’t be too loud or obnoxious. Don’t annoy employees.
  15. Don’t discuss other outings if not everyone is included.
  16. It’s okay to not go. Don’t show up with a “fix this for me” attitude. Just stay home and decompress if you need to. It throws off the vibe when you make the whole get together less fun, because you’re having a bad day.
  17. Pick a restaurant that accommodates everyone’s dietary needs and preferences.
  18. If someone else is paying, only order water and an entree. Don’t order appetizers or desserts, unless they offer.
  19. Don’t customize your order too much.
  20. If it’s late at night, make sure to get in cars fast and safely.
  21. Be conscious of everyone’s curfews and time. They may have something after the hangout.
  22. Make sure everyone gets home safely and has a ride. A quick text is all you need to do.
  23. Text when you get there, especially if you’re first, and be specific where to meet. It’s thoughtful, not bossy.
  24. Don’t be over 15 minutes late, unless there’s a valid reason.
  25. Dress appropriately for the event, and coordinate with everyone. Answer honestly with what you’re wearing. Check the weather, and bring a jacket if you need it.
  26. Don’t film TikToks in public spaces. Just don’t. Have fun. Live in the moment. But don’t give every other teenager a bad rep.
  27. Play music that everyone will like in the car, or at least take turns with a variety of bops.
  28. Don’t be on your phone the whole time, and keep your earbuds out.
  29. Don’t curse or use foul language in front of employees and other people. Know your crowd.
  30. Bring more money than you think you need. You may end up going other places after.
  31. Don’t tell others how to spend their money.
  32. Always clean up the table you’re at, and don’t leave trash around.


  1. If you see someone trying to get in the cafeteria, open the door for them.
  2. Don’t leave trays or trash laying around. Just because we have custodians, doesn’t mean we have to make their job more difficult.
  3. Don’t cut the line to be with your friends. Either go to the back of the line, or take your friend with you to the back of the line. Don’t save spots in line, and don’t go in line if you’re not getting food.
  4. If you’re going to get jalapeño or salsa, put the spoon away correctly. Nobody wants jalapeño juice on their hands. 
  5. Don’t bother other people in the line by pushing them or being loud. 
  6. When the cafeteria lines are between lunch tables, don’t leave backpacks all over the floor. Don’t sit with your seat too far out. Make it easy for people in the line to walk through.
  7. Don’t scream or be super loud in the cafeteria. Your friends are only a foot or two away from you; use your inside voice.
  8. Don’t push yourself where you don’t fit. And if you’re in line, leave traffic space. 


  1. Dispose of pads and tampons. Don’t leave them in the toilet, and dispose of them discreetly. 
  2. Flush the toilet. Nobody needs to see your business there. You’re going to wash your hands anyways, so either push down the handle with your hands or use your foot.
  3. The bathroom isn’t a social space. Just do what you need to do and leave. If you must talk with your friends, stay outside the stall. The stalls aren’t sound proof, so don’t expect to have private conversations in one.
  4. The bathroom also isn’t a film studio. Filming in the space of a bathroom is illegal.
  5. Don’t deface or vandalize the bathroom. Don’t write something you wouldn’t talk to your counselor about on the walls of a bathroom. The bathroom is NOT your therapist – it’s a public space. 
  6. The bathroom is not a romantic space. 
  7. Do your makeup at home. It’s one thing to re-apply lip gloss, but a full face of makeup is different. It gets messy, takes up too much counter space, and gets germs in your makeup. You’re not an influencer.


  1. Don’t be on your phone the entire time. A quick text is understandable, but class is not a movie theatre.
  2. Don’t take photos of yourself during class, especially if other people are in it. Snapchat can wait.
  3. Don’t talk about uncomfortable topics that can be overheard. Some topics can be discussed elsewhere.
  4. Even if you have a close relationship with a teacher, there are boundaries. They are a mentor and advisor, but NOT your friend or confidant.
  5. Be respectful to substitutes. You’re not “cool” for being rude. Treat your sub the same way you’d treat your teacher.
  6. Don’t answer all the questions. Give other people a chance. But, if no one is answering, you can to keep the flow of class going.
  7. If you’re going to eat in class, do not eat loudly or crinkle food bags. Throw away trash.
  8. Don’t hit the bottom of the chair that’s in front of you, and be mindful of how much you’re tapping your feet. 
  9. If you have long hair, make sure it’s not spilling over onto the desk behind you. 
  10. Don’t hum, sing songs, or whistle aloud. It’s very distracting, so save the songs for choir.
  11. Don’t do makeup or your hair in class. Small touch ups are fine, but don’t do a whole skin care routine.


  1. It’s okay to use your words, but use them politely. Consider your tone – people hear tone before they hear words. It’s the tone, not the message.
  2. Don’t use ‘K’ or passive aggressive responses like ‘um’.
  3. Don’t correct people’s grammar.
  4. Don’t judge people in front of their face. You’re allowed to think a certain way about someone, but don’t make it obvious. And have empathy. We all have our own struggles.
  5. Check in every once in a while – make sure you text first too.
  6. Don’t spread drama about one person to other people in a friend group. Just resolve that issue directly with that person. Leave a small issue small, and don’t escalate it beyond proportions.
  7. Clearly communicate when you need a break, and respect other people’s boundaries.
  8. Show people you care in their love language, and know what they’re comfortable with receiving or doing. Gift experiences and not just physical gifts.
  9. Don’t assume everyone wants to be hugged. Always ask, and don’t get offended.
  10. Make sure you match a name to a face fast – using their name in conversation makes them feel welcomed.
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