Definitions of Misconduct:
Off-Topic: Posts that are not related to the topic of this forum, or serve only to distract from the topic of conversation.
Spam: Posts that contain advertisements, links to malicious websites, excessive trolling, repetitive content, or posts that needlessly revive concluded discussions.¹
Hate Speech: Posts containing abusive or threatening speech, or writing that expresses prejudice against a particular group, especially on the basis of race, religion, sexual orientation or identity, or disability.²
Inappropriate Language: Posts containing slurs or language that is otherwise unnecessarily profane. Also includes all attempts to bypass the forum’s language filter.
Harassment/Bullying: Repeated and persistent behavior towards an individual to torment, undermine, frustrate, or provoke a reaction from that person.³
Inappropriate Content: Posts containing content that is unlawful, harmful, threatening, obscene, or offensive. Mostly applies to media, but text posts may fall under this classification as well.
Sexual Content: Posts that contain pornographic or indecent material, or that depict or discuss sexual topics.
Impersonation: Posts or users that pretend to be another person or a representative of a company or team the author(s)are not a part of.
Inflammatory Content: Posts that contain misleading, deceptive, or incorrect information presented in a way designed to incite anger or dissent among forum members.
Punishment Evasion: Users found to be using the forum on alternate accounts in order to avoid punishments they have received on either their main account or another alternate account.
Specific Misconduct Policies:
- Posts deemed off-topic will be removed.
- Repeated offenses will lead to the user being silenced. The punishment’s length will be a minimum of 1 day, and will increase up to 2 weeks depending on the severity of the incident.
- Accounts that were created solely to advertise will be permanently silenced or suspended.
- User advertisements may be removed at moderator discretion.
- Repeated infractions of a user’s advertisement being removed and re-posted will result in the user being silenced, for a minimum of 1 week, and up to 3 months at moderator discretion, depending on severity and number of past infractions.
- Links to malicious websites
- Posts containing links to malicious websites will be removed.
- The minimum punishment for posting a malicious link will be 5 days. Depending on severity and determined intent, as well as number of past infractions, this punishment may increase to any length, including a permanent silence, at moderator discretion.
- Excessive trolling
- Users whose sole intent is to distract from useful content and make the forum more difficult to use over many repeated instances may be deemed excessive trolls.
- Excessive troll accounts will be silenced permanently, as it is unlikely that an account in this category will ever be used for anything else.
- Parodies and satire are allowed on this forum, but posts in this category that are deemed likely to be deceptive or harmful to inexperienced users will have a moderator notice issued on them to note that the content is not intended to be taken seriously.
- Repetitive content:
- If a single user is posting excessive amounts of messages, or similar/identical messages repeatedly, the posts will be removed at moderator discretion and the user will be silenced for between 1 week and 6 months, depending on severity of the incident.
- If several users are all posting similar messages in a repetitive and spammy way, the messages will be removed at moderator’s discretion and the users who posted will be silenced for between 1 day and 2 weeks at moderator discretion. All users determined to be posting messages with intent of spam will receive the same silence duration.
- The punishment for spam will be added to any other punishments that the posts may have incurred on their own (i.e. spamming links to malicious websites will have a minimum punishment of 6 days, because malicious links come with a minimum of 5 days and spam comes with a minimum of 1 day).
- Hate speech will not be tolerated on this forum.
- Posts containing hate speech will be removed at moderator discretion.
- Posts containing slurs used as hate speech will likely receive punishments for both hate speech and inappropriate language, and in some cases harassment/bullying, the lengths of which will add together.
- Users who post hate speech will be silenced for a minimum of 1 week, and will increase up to 6 months depending on the severity of the incident. Repeated infractions will lead to users being silenced permanently.
- This forum has a language filter intended to prevent users from breaking this policy. The functionality of the language filter is as follows:
- Most common swear words will be partially censored like this: f**k, s**t
- Posts containing slurs will not be able to be submitted
- Some potentially offensive words will trigger a moderator review before the post is allowed to be submitted, either as written or partially or entirely censored.
- Any posts obviously designed to bypass the language filter, either by using alternative forms of filtered words or writing the word in a way that the filter can’t catch will be removed and the user will be silenced for between 1 day and 2 weeks at moderator discretion, depending on the severity of the infraction.
- Any use of a word that isn’t caught by the filter but obviously should be will be removed and the user will be silenced for between 1 day and 2 weeks at moderator discretion, depending on the severity of the infraction.
- Inappropriate content is not allowed on this forum in any way
- Inappropriate media or links will be removed, and will result in the poster being silenced for a minimum of 2 days, and may increase to any length at moderator discretion. Repeated offenses will almost certainly result in the user being silenced for a longer.
- Inappropriate content in text form will be removed, and come with a minimum silence length of 2 days, and may increase to any length at moderator discretion, including being permanently silenced after repeated infractions.
- Sexual content is not allowed on this forum in any way.
- This category does not include discussion of one’s sexuality, as long as the discussion does not include content unsuitable for this forum.
- Pornographic or indecent media or links will be removed, and will result in the poster being silenced for a minimum of 1 month, and may increase to any length, included being permanently silenced, at moderator discretion. A repeated offense will almost certainly result in the user being permanently silenced.
- Textual discussion of sexual topics will be removed, and come with a minimum silence length of 2 weeks, and may increase to any length, including being permanently silenced after repeated infractions, at moderator discretion.
- Accounts created with the sole intent of impersonation will have all of their posts removed and will be silenced indefinitely.
- Silenced accounts will be given the opportunity to change their name and return to the community. If they do not wish to do so, their account will be deleted to avoid confusion.
- In cases where the impersonation account is created by a user with another account, the other account will be silenced for between 1 week and 2 months depending on severity, at moderators discretion.
- Posts that appear to be written in an inflammatory way may be removed at moderator discretion.
- Moderators will likely suggest changes to the post that would make it suitable to be resubmitted to the forum.
- If bad faith is suspected, the user may be silenced for some amount of time, at moderator discretion.
- If an account is found to be used for punishment evasion, that account will be silenced permanently. Additionally, 2 weeks of silence will be added to the account where the punishment was originally issued, where applicable.
- The additional weeks added to punishments scale exponentially across multiple infractions, so if 4 alt accounts are found then 2^4 = 16 weeks are added.
- Egregious cases will end in all accounts for the user being permanently silenced, at moderator discretion.
Additional Moderation Policies:
- Many-times repeated or particularly egregious violations of misconduct policies may result in the user being permanently silenced or suspended regardless of the relevant listed punishment in the specific misconduct policy, at moderator discretion.
- Moderator influence on the content of posts will be minimal, collaborative, and transparent.
- Moderators will act as normal users wherever possible. They will not exert their influence by editing posts or deleting posts they personally don’t agree with.
- Mod-posts (highlighted in yellow) are for official staff messaging and indicate that the content of that post was agreed upon by multiple moderators.
- Normal posts made by moderators that are not highlighted in yellow may reflect the personal beliefs of the moderator, and are not to be taken as the official position of the forum or the moderation team.
- No single moderator will decide on their own to edit the content or title of a post. All available moderators will weigh in on the decision, which is not one that will be taken lightly.
- In the rare cases where the moderators deem editing the content or the title of a post is necessary, it will be accompanied with a clearly labeled explanation of what was changed and why.
- Moderators may temporarily unlist or hide a controversial post while a decision is being made on if moderator action is necessary. Posts will not be left unlisted or hidden permanently.
- When moderators decide to delete between 1 and 3 posts on a thread, an explanation will be given in private messages. If more posts than that are deleted, an explanation will be posted in the thread as a mod-post (highlighted in yellow). This explanation will be reviewed by multiple moderators before publishing. A public explanation may also be given for 1-3 post deletions, and a private explanation may be given for more than 3 posts, at moderator discretion.
- New users may be under additional scrutiny.
- An account whose first post is an egregious breach of the rules may receive punishments greater than those listed in the relevant listed punishment in the specific misconduct policy, at moderator discretion.
- Please note that this document attempts to be as comprehensive as possible.
- Inevitably a degree of human judgment is required. In cases where moderators make judgments beyond the scope of this document, the reason for the deviations will be clearly explained.
- Certain users may be disallowed to join the forum based on prior events.
- This will be avoided as much as possible - the intent is for this forum to be a clean slate for all users, moderation-wise.
- In cases where moderators determine that a user’s presence creates a clear and present danger for other forum users based on prior events, that user will be silenced or suspended indefinitely. This policy will be used sparingly.
¹ Adapted from Wikipedia: Forum Spam
² Adapted from Oxford Dictionary: Hate Speech