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Striking Up The Right Conversation
The next step is how to talk to people. Saying a nice greeting to everyone is the best way to catch someone's attention. If that doesn't work usually it's best to address someone with a question. For example, to ask someone a question you may want to use this format to do it and to talk to others the same way:
Person's name: Your question

Most of the time you will get someone's attention this way. Try not to yell, this is where you either type in all capitals or use text editing to increase the font size and bold type of your message. In IRC's you can only type in all capitals, there is no text editing. It is another way oggetting another chatter to talk to you, but it is considered to be rude unless you have no choice to, which is usually when no matter what you have said in the chat, everyone is still ignoring you even though you have not typed anything rude or insulting.

Chat Abbreviations
To cut down time on typing, many people have started using abbreviations for various actions and phrases. Many of the abbreviations used in chats have pretty much become universal and a lot have become creatively humorous thanks to many regulars in those chat rooms. The following abbreviations and their meanings are some of the most commonly used out there. For a much bigger list the WBS Chat Book has a whole list compiled from various users from all over including various smileys!! This is most of the list from that place:
AFAIK As Far As I Know
AFK Away From Keyboard
ASAP As Soon As Possible
BBL Be Back Later
BBN Bye Bye Now
BBS Be Back Soon
BEG Big Evil Grin
BF Boy Friend
BRB Be Right Back
BTW By The Way
BWL Bursting With Laughter
C&G Chuckle and Grin
CID Crying In Disgrace
CNP... Continued in Next Post
CP Chat Post
CSG Chuckle Snicker Grin
CYA See Ya
CYAL8R See You Later
DLTBBB Don't Let The Bed Bugs Bite
EG Evil Grin
EMSG Email Message
FYI For Your Information
GF Girl Friend
GFN Gone For Now
GMBO Giggling My Butt Off
GMTA Great Minds Think Alike
GTSY Glad To See You
H&K Hug and Kiss
HABU Have A Better 'Un
HAGN Have A Good Night
HAGU Have A Good 'Un
HHIS Hanging Head in Shame
IC I See
IGP I Gotta Pee
IMO In My Opinion
IMHO In My Humble Opinion
IRL In Real Life
IWALU I Will Always Love You
JMO Just My Opinion
JTLYK Just To Let You Know
KIT Keep In Touch
KOC Kiss On Cheek
KOL Kiss On Lips
L8R Later
L8R G8R Later 'Gater
LHM Lord Help Me
LHO Laughing Head Off
LHU Lord Help Us
LOL Laugh Out Loud
LSHMBB Laughing So Hard My Belly is Bouncing
LSHMBH Laughing So Hard My Belly Hurts
LTNS Long Time No See
LTS Laughing To Self
LUWAMH Love You With All My Heart
LY Love Ya
OIC Oh, I See
OL Old Lady (wife, girlfriend)
OM Old Man (husband, boyfriend)
OTTOMH Off The Top of My Head
PDS Please Don't Shoot
PM Private Message
PMFJI Pardon Me For Jumping In
PMP Peed My Pants
POAHF Put On A Happy Face
Poof Has left the chat room.
QSL Reply
QSO Conversation
QT Cutie
ROFL Rolling On Floor Laughing
ROFLAPMP ...And Peeing My Pants
ROFLMAO ...My A** Off
ROFLMAOAY ...My A** Off At You
ROFLMAOWTIME ...With Tears In My Eyes
ROFLUTS ...Unable to Speak
RTSM Read The Stupid Manual!
SETE Smiling Ear To Ear
SHID Slaps Head In Disgust
SO Significant Other
SWAK Sealed With A Kiss
SWL Screaming with Laughter
SYS See You Soon
TA Thanks Again
TOY Thinking Of You
TTFN Ta Ta For Now
TTYL Talk To you Later
WB Welcome Back
WTH What/Who The Heck
YBS You'll Be Sorry
YG Young Gentleman
YL Young Lady
YM Young Man
ttyl talk to you later
ttys talk to you soon
tcob taking care of business
ttfn ta ta for now

Another thing that was previously mentioned is your text size and appearance. If you choose you can use text editing to increase the size of your text to catch someone's attention. This can make your messages in bold, italics, or color. By doing this to your messages and not making the text big you make your messages more unique and personalized. Once again refer to any instructions a chat room has pertaining to text editing use. This usage however cannot be done in IRC chats. Only the CAPS LOCK can be used to make your text larger.

Doing Actions Within The Chat
Another aspect of chat rooms is doing a particular action within the chat. The format used to do it is like this: **your action here**. You can use as many asterixes as you want when typing these out. The actions you do can be pretty much anything. From hugging an on-line friend to giving someone a cyber-beer to drink. Also you can use the abbreviations previously mentioned also. When in IRC chats there's the "/me" command to do your actions. Just type it in like this: /me your action here, and it will print out your name and the action you just did. Or if you want to do the asterix technique instead in an IRC chat you can do that also. It depends on the person's preference of doing their actions. These sure come in handy when you want to give someone a cyber-smooch or a wedgie from the dark depths of the ocean!

Posting Links And E-Mail
Now during a conversation with someone, they happen to ask for your homepage address or e-mail address, but you don't know how to post it up. This is not a problem. Considering most Internet chats are very lenient with this it's very easy to post up an address. In most cases all you have to do in Internet chats is just type out the web site address' URL, like this:

With e-mail addresses the format is a bit different:

In some Internet chats you may have to employ full HTML coding to post up a web or mail link. Again you will have to refer to any instructions that the chat has on posting links. With IRC chats however just type in the addresses for the person to write down since IRC's are text only and you cannot go from an IRC chat room directly to the world wide web. It's a different program and connection.

Long Distance Relationships
Ahhhhh, cyber-love. Such a new and wonderful concept, that is until you see the person you're talking to in person! **chuckle** Just kidding there folks. While chatting away you may come across someone who happens to have your same interests. And after talking with this person for some time you may become attracted to them and vice versa. It just might be what we call in cyberspace, cyber-love. A lot of people out there have met their significant others through the computers and why shouldn't you? There's just a few things to follow and to keep an eye on. Considering that this relationship maybe over a long distance the chances of you meeting the other person are almost next to none. But don't let this stop you from keeping in contact of each other. Usually people will keep in contact through e-mail, regular mail, and sometimes phone calls. And if you do somehow find a way to meet, hey more power to you! Just keep in mind however that things can happen in a chat just as they do outside. An example would be cyber-cheating. Just as the name implies, cheating can happen on a computer just as in real life. Just read those stories of married people having affairs on-line. All I can say is, cheating through a computer is ridiculous, but unfortunately it happens. And like I mentioned of other stuff happening, they can also be messing around with someone not on-line and totally stabbing you in the back. Just be careful when getting into a long distance relationship with someone, it may seem great and everything, but something just might be lurking under the surface.

If you happen to get into a relationship on-line through a chat always be friendly toward the other person, unless they happen to do something that makes you upset, use whatever means necessary to break off the relationship. If you are looking for a relationship on-line, try a singles chat. Don't go into a chat not truly meant for cyber-love expecting to find the right person immediately. If you do decide to crash a different chat, once again be careful. And finally if you happened to be dragged into a relationship and you weren't intending on getting involved with one, be cordial toward the other person. There's nothing wrong about being friendly. Who knows? Things can develop into wonderful stuff.

Defensive And Offensive Techniques
On occasion you will come across a chatter who will be irate with you on something you said or who just thinks they are "da bomb." Usually this will be the result of a disagreement on a particular subject or something that can believed derogatory to many chatters. Also there is a growing number of chatters who just go into rooms to annoy other chatters. These people will just pick someone out of the crowd and start insulting them for no apparent reason other than to make themselves l