This survey discusses the human-perspective into networking through the Tactful Networking paradigm, whose goal is to add perceptive senses to the network by assigning it with human-like capabilities of observation, interpretation, and reaction to daily-life features and associated entities. To achieve this, knowledge extracted from inherent human behavior in terms of routines, personality, interactions, and others is leveraged, empowering the learning and prediction of user needs to improve QoE and system performance while respecting privacy and fostering new applications and services. Tactful Networking groups solutions from literature and innovative interdisciplinary human aspects studied in other areas. The paradigm is motivated by mobile devices’ pervasiveness and increasing presence as a sensor in our daily social activities. With the human element in the foreground, it is essential: (i) to center big data analytics around individuals; (ii) to create suitable incentive mechanisms for user participation; (iii) to design and evaluate both human-aware and system-aware networking solutions; and (iv) to apply prior and innovative techniques to deal with human-behavior sensing and learning. This survey reviews the human aspect in networking solutions through over a decade, followed by discussing the tactful networking impact through literature in behavior analysis and representative examples. This paper also discusses a framework comprising data management, analytics, and privacy for enhancing human raw-data to assist Tactful Networking solutions. Finally, challenges and opportunities for future research are presented.