One that ive learned so far is that IRC is like a government. Some people have higher status then poeple who are better suited for it.
At times, but not always this is true. Basically it is because some people start a channel, think they are God because they have an @ next to their name and they accept this as a sign that they can convert from a real life, decent, hardworking, well-mannered, eloquent, humble, dignified individual into a moron who can kick and ban for any petty little thing they can find, and often be rude to you on your way "out the door". However, IRC isn't really like a government (most anyway) because IRC is not a democracy and never has been. It's quite often a dictatorship of sorts. No-one in high places is voted for, the higher up the ladder you get the more chance there is that you put yourself there and for your own reasons. When that happens, on some networks, usually the small servers hosted on shell accounts, where the opers and bots and hosts out number the chatters by a factor of 17 to 1, you can give the orders, you can remove anyone for any reason or no reason at all, you can abuse people and then kick them if they seek retribution. This is why these small servers are both unpopular and generally "let the side down" because there is also plenty of well-organised and well funded IRC networks that are either directly run by or sponsored by ISP's.
As codemastr pointed out it's best just to simply use commonsense and perhaps a tutorial on "Netiquette" (a stupid word, but yeah), most IRC network help websites contain such tutorials. Half the things he listed are things I wouldn't kick for, especially if used in moderation, though they are things that generally to raise eyebrows on IRC. It all depends on what channel you are on, what specific purpose the founder wants the channel used for and how many people are in that channel. SOme channels will have modes set that block some of these things. +c will block colour codes and on some networks also bold, reverse, underline, etc, so if you always type in a colour or use talkers, the mode will block your whole sentence. +d blocks nickname changes. If you ever see a user change their name to something else ever 10 - 20 seconds for a long time then it does because distracting. These modes are more a measure to avoid having to kick people.
The rule of thumb is pick a channel you like, sit there for a bit and watch how the channel works. Get a feel for what they'll allow you to talk about and what the hosts (ops) or bots will kick you for. Remember that bots will usually ban you without a warning for things like flooding and swearing, though bots usualy unset these bans alot quicker than human operators will, usually between 5 and 10 mins is the norm.
The first big rule to learn is the IRC hierarchy. There are server issues and channel issues. IRCops are there to make sure the server runs smoothly, help users with things like connecting properly or IRC commands, etc and to defend the server against bad things like excessive clones and IRC warbots. On some occasions they will also log illegal activity and notify the police or the user's ISP of such activity. Then you have Channel Founders (an owner of a room) SOP, AOP, HOP, VOP, UOP channel access levels though the number and type of access depends on the IRC server you connect to, most are different to the rest in some way. These people look after their respective channels and you will see these people more than you'll see any IRCops (also called opers). There is a large distinction in what an IRCop and what a channel host will look after. EG: If you get kicked out of a room (with or without a reason) you will find it fruitless running to an IRCop simply because they appear to be higher up the ladder than the person who kicked you. IRCops won't interfere in channel matters unless there is a severe attack of some kind on the channel which could upset the stability of the server. If you do get kicked, it's best to just waer it until the ban is removed. Use another channel for the time being.
Some networks have special events, usually live chats with celebrities (the network I chat on does such things, and a few others do too). The room will usually be moderated and all questions are diverted to a second hidden room where the chat's moderator can view/edit questions before posting them in the "auditorium" channel. See your network's website to see if such events occur there.
Lastly, if you are or become knowledgeable about computing or IRC or both you might one day get chosen to be a channel host or an IRCop. This depends on a few big factors such as how well-behaved you are over a long period of time and the knowledge you accumulate or utilise when helping others, once again over a long period of time. The reputable networks will not hand out o:lines (A server function that makes you an IRCop) to those who walk in and request one and/or brags about their knowledge. They will want you to prove yourself first. It can take years and indeed you might also get overlooked too. The same applies to becoming a channel host in a big channel. If you beg (constantly asking for an @ then it often earns you a ban, sometimes even when asking the first time. The secret here is wait to get picked, but not necessarily expect to get picked.
That's all I can think of at the moment.