Comments and Forums: Terms of Service and Guidelines
- Please read the Forum FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions). You
will gain a good perspective of how the Forums work if you do.
**N.B. Coming soon - apologies for the
- Choose a subject title carefully. This forum already has a wide
scope that can almost accommodate anything under the sun. When you
start a thread, try to make the subject title self-explanatory but
not too long. Don't use a paragraph as a title. It takes up a lot
of space and is hard to read.
- Stay with the thread. Start a new thread if you are diverging
to something else. When the thread gets to more than 50 posts, it
might be better to start a new one. You can compress the thread to
view back topics better.
- Respond to issues, not to personalities.This way, it will stay
rational and reasonable. Passion is good, but when emotions
over-rule reason, hurtful phrasings can result.
- Do elaborate your ideas if it is a new thread. Humour, or
respectful criticism of ideas (not Posters) are by all means
encouraged. Everyone has a different style. But make sure you have
plenty of supporting evidence and information to back up your
argument. A one-liner without substance is the best way to expose
one's ignorance and shallowness. Remember: you're entitled to your
own opinions; you're not entitled to your own facts.
- Be tolerant and patient when debating with someone with a
different view. Your goal is to have the other side understand your
viewpoint, not necessarily agree that yours is the only truth.
There might not be one solution or one correct view anyway.
Confrontation would widen the gap further. Try to think from the
other party's angle. You might learn something. Sharing different
views is better than arguing.
- Know when to quit. When two parties are repeating the same
arguments over and over without new insights, there is no point in
- Give new users some slack. Don't chastise them for not reading
all of SF Gateway first. Intimidation will result in newcomers not
posting at all. Make them feel welcome into the community - suggest
authors you enjoy or recommend books that serve as good entry
points. We were all newbies once.
The owners and administrators of the site expect community
members to adhere to the following guidelines:
- Treat others with respect. Use civil language and never attack
anyone personally - disagree with an idea or a statement, not the
poster of said idea.
- Never use language that is prejudiced or phobic (including but
not limited to comments on race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity,
religion or class) or likely to be interpreted as hate speech.
- Do not deliberately antagonise or bait other members, or
otherwise troll the forums. This is a place for discussions and
intelligent, humane discourse, it is NOT to be used as a vehicle
for insulting, slandering, defaming or otherwise injuring
- Keep disagreements civil, and remember that just because
someone disagrees with your opinion or argument does not mean that
he/she is attacking you. Disagree with an idea, not a person.
- We do not wish to ban outright the use of swearing or 'bad'
language, but we exhort members to think carefully before employing
the proverbial 'ignorant person's eloquence'. And please note that
points 1 - 4 above over-ride absolutely any right to use such
- We encourage the sharing links to 3rd party sites
likely to be of interest to other members, but there is a
difference between sharing and shilling. Do NOT use the forums to
advertise your products, books, self-published eBooks, etc.
Violation of any of the above guidelines could result in your
post being deleted; repeat offenders will have their accounts
removed and be banned from the forums. These decisions will be at
the discretion of the moderators, so please adhere to any and all
warnings they might give you. Normally one warning is all you'll
get, so please take it seriously.
It is the intention of the administrators that the forums be as
self-moderating as possible, and we would be delighted not to have
to intervene in any disputes. Please flag posts as abusive if you
feel they overstep the mark, but we believe the best form of
moderation is for every user to stop and think before posting. A
few minutes calming-down time could be all it takes to make
everybody's life easier and more pleasant.
- Check the forums and the relevant SF Gateway sections before
asking your question.If it already has been resolved, it will save
you the wait for someone to answer or the aggravation to another
user to search for you.
- Help others.This is a community and it works best when we share
information. Other members will remember your deeds and will go to
greater lengths to help you if you've been good to them in the
Have fun!These are guidelines, they are intended to give users a
set of rules we can apply if trouble strikes. It's really to
protect you and others from feeling hurt or intimidated by others
on the forums, we want you and your opinions to feel welcome