Editor's note: Brenna Ehrlich and Andrea Bartz are the sarcastic brains behind humor blog and book Stuff Hipsters Hate. When they're not trolling Brooklyn for new material, Ehrlich works as news editor at Mashable.com, and Bartz holds the same position at Psychology Today.
(CNN) -- Attention, those of you who think with your clicks: Social networks can help you get aid.
That's aid, as in help.
Facebook, Twitter and the like are not just repositories for your snobbish music recommendations and updates on your fish's freak BMs. They're also great tools for sending out SOSes, if you know how to ask.
Want proof? With a few quick tweets and status updates, we stocked this article with friends' and followers' anecdotes and tips. It's not laziness; it's the magic of the internet!
Ready to get a few unsuspecting worker ants to do things for you while you lean back in your La-Z-Boy, wiping Dorito dust on the outer seams of your corduroys? Just follow these etiquette guidelines and start raking in the aid:
Choose your weapon -- er, website
If you've got a goodly number of friends, Facebook's a good bet because -- duh -- the people who see your request know you and, one would hope, like you.
You're dealing with a prescreened group while asking for, say, a few willing programmers to help with a freelance gig at your company, as one friend did the other week. ("Less than an hour after my boss yelled at me for not hiring freelancers, I had four signed up and ready to start working," he reports.)
Twitter's more effective for quick, finite questions -- say, asking the entirety of the internet what the $#(@* this terrifying error message means, or if anyone knows of a site that has super awesome snaps of people re-enacting childhood photos.
Write things worth reading
The successful mooch never rests. That's because he knows that if he's completely boring during his sedentary (nonmooching) stage, no one will be around to hear him when he's asking his buddies if anyone has a MOG account he could borrow for a minute.
So give some thought to what you post daily -- not just when you need something.
This is especially important for companies that need customer input and nonprofits that rely on the kindness of internet strangers -- give your devotees good reason to follow you and to never hit that "hide" button.
Recruit help in recruiting help
I know, meta. But if you have fewer friends than fingers and toes, asking a heavier hitter to retweet your request will substantially up the number of eyeballs that fall upon your plea.
(Don't feel too bad if you're in the no-friends camp: Last year, a whopping 74% of Twitter users had amassed fewer than 10 followers. So at least you're not alone ... wait.)
So tweet at or even e-mail your Big Deal friends and ask them to give your request some love.
Just don't go crazy tagging people on a Facebook post you think they should respond to. Few things are more annoying than getting 11 e-mails in a row because someone tagged you -- and a half-dozen others -- in a Facebook note and people you don't know are eagerly commenting below it. (We could turn that e-mail notification off, but we are all. Too. Lazy.)
Don't make despicably selfish requests
Let's talk content. Our friend Tammy Tibbetts founded She's The First, a nonprofit that matches girls in developing nations with donors to fund their education.
Now, believe you me, when Tibbetts gets on the Twitter and announces that She's The First is looking for a pro bono printer for some stationery, her followers rack their brains and pitch in if they can -- because Tibbetts' work is undeniably selfless and awesome. A college friend's request for a free Forever Lazy onesie because he's too, you know, to buy one himself? Slightly less compelling.
Even if you're not gathering a workforce to change the world, you can look like a good guy by crowdsourcing stuff in which your audience has a vested interest.
One friend crowdsourced the playlist for his wedding reception, thus ensuring they'd be grooving all night. They got to hear "Genius of Love," and he didn't have to think too hard. Win-win.
Say thank you
Yep, we're circling back to common courtesy, a recurring theme in this portmanteau of a weekly column (netiquette, get it?).
Show gratitude when initial help is offered and again when the offer pans out and a wish is granted. ("Check out this gorgeous stationery, courtesy of so-and-so!")
Often, a one-two punch of public and private appreciation works well -- say, a super-stoked, "This person's generosity is amazing!" on your social media platforms of choice, plus a private e-mail to cut to the, "No, seriously, you rock."
Return the favor
"Lifestyle entrepreneur" Jonathan Fields begins almost every day with a variation of "Good morning! Who can I help today?" on Twitter. Perhaps more impressively, he then goes on to answer and help out whomever (yes, with an M, Jonathan) he can.
Now, seriously, when this guy can't think of a word or needs a movie suggestion, I'm willing to bet his devotees are jumping out of their jeans to lend a hand.
We're not suggesting you pull an all-out Mother Teresa, but scanning your Newsfeed for opportunities for helpfulness is a feel-good move.
Yeah, this whole assisting-other-humans might sound counter to the Forever Lazy and leather La-Z-Boy you were initially envisioning, but karma has an angelic side, too.
And tapping into the WWW's awesome web of info-sharing, skill swappage and general generosity? It feels at least as good as settling into a recliner with a fresh bag of Cooler Ranch.