All of those that work in an office environment probably know the smell of microwaveable popcorn. There may be one or two people, that like clockwork, start eating their popcorn at the same time, everyday. For some people it gets to the point where they can’t stand the overpowering smell, and it starts to affect the relationship with the other worker.
Some people would say that there is a hard line and some things should just not be allowed at work. Some would say, making microwaveable popcorn goes over this line. Some would say that the sound of chewing from the next desk is too much and should not be allowed. Others consider the office, the sea of cubicles is a public space and everyone should be allowed to do as they please. Is there a line that should never be crossed.
The answer to this question of office etiquette does not have a standard answer that every office has to follow. There are certainly laws that have to be followed. Laws against such behaviors like sexual harassment or any kind of discrimination are important and should not be crossed anywhere at anytime. Other questions are more situational. In some offices the smell of microwaveable popcorn is tolerable.
The important point to take with you to the office is to communicate with those that you share space with. The cubicle world should be considered shared space, not a separate office in all respects. In order to be considerate and be considerate it is important to talk to you neighbors. Not unlike grade school, we all share the same space. Unless you find yourself in a home office, alone in the house, you are going to have to try to compromise. Popcorn on Fridays? Talk to each other.