So News Bitch had something to say about wording in e-communication. She reminds us first off that Cyberbullying is real and making headlines. Next, she points us to Tim O-Reiley's Blogger Code of Conduct, where was had a reminder of the basic rules of writing email.
The basic gist is that cyberbullying can happen not just by intention but by accident. We often forget that the person receiving or reading the text we've sent out does not have the benefit of body language, voice inflection, or that hearty laugh you'd get in person. They are left to interpret the written word solely in the context of the material at hand and sadly, often with context that was purely in our minds.
Does the occasional emoticon help matters? Perhaps among friends. Likely those also require knowing what's going on in the writer's mind, and could easily lose meaning or be entirely misinterpreted by the reader.
I'll leave you with News Bitch's final passage.
"If you don’t have something nice to post… and if your readers don’t have something intriguing, thoughtful, humorous, obviously sarcastic, or nice to post… don’t post it at all. "