A while back, we posted the principles that we follow when moderating our forums. In short, that is what you can expect from us as we make our decisions. Now it’s time for us to identify what we expect out of our members.
We want our forums to be both informative and fun. As long as we pursue that goal together, our community will be vital and lively. But too often, there are differences of opinion regarding what is “informative” and “fun.” These differences of opinions can lead to conflict. Therefore, we have some principles that we expect our members to uphold.
Treat Others with Respect
Respect facilitates a high-quality community. Disrespect erodes community. When posting, respectful language is important.
Contact the Mods when Issues with Other Members Arise
If a member suspects that another member is guilty of something inappropriate, then contact the mods rather than addressing it yourself. We will look into it. We do not want to see members called out in the forums as being a “troll,” “spammer,” or anything else.
Writers are Responsible for What they Write
When we communicate, we are not just responsible for what we intend to say, but we are also partially responsible for what is heard. For example, we suggest being careful of the sarcasm. It doesn’t always translate well in writ. Humor isn’t funny when the butt of the joke isn’t laughing. When humor is perceived as flaming, then it is likely that we will conclude that it is flaming.
Members are Responsible for When They Push the Envelope
There will always be gray areas in forums communication. What one member sees as a bit over the line, another might say that it only nudges it. Usually, these gray areas are pretty recognizable as gray areas. If you are not sure whether a post is in bounds, we suggest not posting it.
Politics and Religion Need to be Avoided
Political discussions tend to erode and damage community. A while back, we asked whether OT wanted to allow mild political discussion. The idea didn’t receive enough community support to merit the change. Therefore, we do not allow political or religious topics as conversation in OT.
Members Need to Address Concerns Regarding Moderators and Moderation in an Appropriate Manner
If members have questions regarding moderator decisions, we want to hear them. The appropriate way to address your concerns is to send in a Support Ticket so that we can start a conversation. An inappropriate way to do it would be to press the issue through an OT thread or start a bashing thread, both of which are a form of forum disruption.
ZOMG! I Got a Timeout!
If ever a member receives a timeout and believes that the decision was made in error, the appropriate way to address the situation is through a Support Ticket. We are more than willing to revisit our decisions, and if there are concerns we want to hear them.