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Debate Politics Forums - Forum Rules

Debate Politics Forums and users are not responsible from any and all use of knowledge used, received, or created on this board. This includes but is not limited to: political advice, medical advice, and legal advice. By reading and/or participating on this website, you have agreed to these terms.

1. Freedom of Speech - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

At Debate Politics we see freedom of speech as the right to communicate ideas. With this right comes the responsibility to choose your words carefully and respect the rights of others. Common sense dictates the difference between one expressing themselves and one who is disruptive. If you are focused on contributing to the community, you will not have to be concerned with being a disruption. Disruptive behavior, such as personal attacks, can lead to temporary or permanent revocation of posting privileges.

2. Spamming - What constitutes spamming can be, but is not limited to, "A message (typically an advertisement) sent indiscriminately to a wide set of discussion lists [forums] or newsgroups."[google] Also, any message or series of messages promoting a product, site or service made by a member who does not demonstrate the intention and willingness to participate in the normal discourse of the DPMB can be considered spamming. Spamming and/or spam bots will not be tolerated and can result in immediate banning of the spammer.

3. Baiting/Flaming/Trolling - To bait someone in a general sense is to make a comment with a purposeful intent to coerce some form of response from the individual. In some cases this device can be a useful tool of debate, eliciting responses to highlight a point or reveal an underlying truth concerning someone’s argument. However, in other cases the intent of the bait is less focused on debating. “Flamebaiting” is making statements intended to cause an angry or emotional response/flame from the person. Another form of baiting is known as “derailing” or “thread-jacking”. This is deliberate act of making statements with an aim of diverting the topic of a thread significantly from its main focus. These negative forms of baiting constitute a rules violation that can potentially lead to a suspension of posting privileges.

"Originally, flame meant to carry forth in a passionate manner in the spirit of honorable debate. Flames most often involved the use of flowery language and flaming well was an art form. More recently flame has come to refer to "any kind of derogatory comment no matter how witless or crude."[google] In a forum with sensitive topics such as this, derogatory flaming is bound to happen. Common sense will prevail, yet this is not an invitation to flame. e.g. "You stupid *****ing moron," is completely unacceptable and could lead to a suspension of posting privileges.

Trolling is a diversionary tactic of those who “deliberately exploit tendencies of human nature or of an online community to upset people” or those “who post inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages” to disrupt normal on-topic discussions. [Wikipedia]. Ignorance, bias, and genuine dissent are not trolling, though at times they may appear similar due to the disingenuous nature of some trolls. Trolling is not allowed and can potentially lead to the suspension of posting privileges.

4. Don't Be A Jerk (DBAJ) - This simply means what it sounds like.

5. Multiple Posts - Of the same subject may be consolidated or deleted at Moderator discretion.

6. Moderators - Moderators are the key to the success of any board. They are expected to live up to a higher standard and as such we expect you to treat them with a higher standard. Any rule broken against a Moderator could result in a temporary suspension of posting priveleges. Publicly disrespectful behavior from a member toward a Moderator regarding Moderator actions or decisions may also result in a summary suspension of that member's posting privileges.

Please note that the moderating team is under no obligation to read every post. Occasionally, inappropriate posts will slip by unnoticed by the mods. If you see one of these posts, please report it immediately by using the "report post" button under the offenders avatar. This is the icon:

6a. Moderator Actions - If there are any concerns over Moderator actions, the only way to officially address them is with a private message (PM) to Schweddy, a Moderator, or using the Contact Us dispute process. Your feedback and concerns are very valuable to the success of this board. Each and every PM will be read and investigated. However, until specifically told by a Moderator of a reversal, the Moderator action is considered official.

Publicly disrespectful and/or negative behavior from a member regarding a Moderator's capacity as a Mod, the Moderator Team in general, or Moderator actions may not occur on any open open areas of the website. Violations of any of the above guidelines is termed Insubordination and may result in a summary suspension or termination of that member's posting privileges.

Understanding that at times members may need to vent, a new area in The Basement called Where's my Binky has been created that is exempt from 6a and made specifically for members wishing to rant about Moderator action. No issues will be resolved or overturned due to disputes here, and Moderator participation in this thread is not mandatory.

7. English - All threads will be in the English language. Threads and posts which are not in English may be edited or deleted at the discretion of a Moderator.
Please include translations with any posts that are not in English.

7a. Bypassing the Word Censor - In the interest of maintaining civility, profanity is strongly discouraged here at Debate Politics. As such, certain words are censored by our software. When censored words are entered into a post, they will show as *asterisks*. Attempts to bypass the Word Censor includes but is not limited to: letter substitutions, inserting extra letters, using special characters or symbols, using BBCode, or using HTML formatting. If you bypass the word censor - a warning is issued. If you continue to bypass the word censor you will be issued an infraction. Basically there are two viable choices available. Either choose an innocuous word, or use the intended word and allow the software to auto-mask. If a word is not censored and you feel that it should be, please PM a member of the Moderation Team and we will consider your suggestion. The list of censored words has been scaled back and made more consistent. The “F word”, the “S word”, and the “C word” will be auto-censored in all their varied forms.

8. Avatars - Offensive avatars will be removed.

9. Sourced Material - All material being posted from outside of (external material) MUST contain a link to the original source. This applies to all external material, regardless if it is copyright protected or not.

In addition, a limitation of 2-3 medium-sized paragraphs per thread is allowed. Proper format is to Copy & Paste the text of the same-source material, place it inside the 'quote tags' and then offer a link to the material source page for further reading. The 'quote tags' are located in the post creation window (the tags look like a balloon from a cartoon).

Moderator discretion shall prevail here.

* This will not be enforced in certain threads (such as the cartoon threads).

10. Advertisements - If you wish to advertise on Debate Politics - please contact Schweddy. Advertisements in posts will be considered spam and deleted.

11. Illegal attachments - Any attachment that is illegal to own or trade will be promptly removed and you will be banned.

12. Multiple and Proxy Accounts - Multiple accounts of the same user are forbidden. Proxy accounts (specifically utilizing a third party to post) will not be tolerated. Further, sharing of an account/password with other members and non-members alike is prohibited. At the discretion of the Moderator, these issues may result in infractions and/or banishment against all accounts.
**If you are having issues with your account, please contact us by using this form before creating another.

13. Privacy - Posting personal email addresses, full names, places of employment, and phone numbers (etc.) for any purpose will not be tolerated. This is a breach of privacy, and you could lose your posting privileges permanently.

The posting of PMs sent to you from another poster are considered private and can also not be posted. If this is done, the post will be deleted and further consequences may occur. This does NOT apply to the Binky sub-forum in regards to posting PMs sent by any member of the Moderation Team regarding Warnings, Infractions, or other issues concerning moderation.

13a. Harassment - Harassing a poster inside or outside of DP (unsolicited) will not be tolerated. This includes, but is not limited to:

- continuing to send unsolicited PMs after being asked to stop
- calling them at home or work
- attempts to hack into their personal e-mail
- attempts to hack into a personal website or account
- sending anything through the mail/UPS/Fed-Ex, etc...

This is a breach of privacy. You will lose your posting privileges permanently.

14. Signatures - Signatures that are used to bait or attack another user or break any other forum rule could result in moderator action. Repeated violations of this rule may result in increased points for each occurrence.

15. The Basement Forum - Anything written in The Basement Forum may not be copied outside The Basement Forum nor may you link to The Basement Forum or you will be banned. Addendum ~ The Vegas Rule.

16. Disciplinary Action - Users that break any rules may be issued a Warning, either in the thread where the offense took place in or via a Private Message (PM) - sometimes both. Repeated violations of the rules can result in a permanent or temporary revocation of posting privileges. Temporary suspension of posting privileges might range in duration from 24 hours to 2 weeks or more. If the conduct is severely detrimental to the board, the account will be banned and posting privileges revoked permanently. This is at the sole discretion of the Moderator. You may submit an appeal using the "contact us" link at the bottom of every page.

Not all disciplinary actions will be public. Furthermore, Moderators are not obligated to notify general membership of whether a particular member has received a Warning or Infraction. Nor are Moderators obligated to discuss any disciplinary actions taken against a member with any other member.

17. Starting a Thread - When starting a thread it is best to express your own thoughts in your own words. Threads w/o original content may be summarily closed.

18. Hate Messages - Hate Messages delivered via threads, posts, signatures, or PM's are forbidden at Debate Politics. The Moderator Team defines a hate message as a comment using one of the following towards a “protected group” or an individual based on their identity in a “protected group” in an extreme manner:

A) The support for or a call for violence.
B) The suggestion of removal of essential civil liberties.
C) Claims of severe dehumanization.
D) Claims of illegal behavior across the entire group.

Protected groups under this rule:
a) Race
b) Ethnicity
c) Religion (also atheists)
d) Sexual orientation
e) National origin
f) Gender (including transgendered)
g) Disability

19. Pornography / Nudity / Graphic Images - Instances of clear and purposeful sexual or lewd nudity, or sexual acts, should not be posted or linked to anywhere on the site. Instances of extreme images, such as severe violence or grave injury, should not be posted anywhere on the site, and can only be linked to when directly relevant to a currently discussed story and a clear warning of the contents violent nature is given. Posting or linking to either of these types of images could result in suspension or ban.

Other instances of sexually suggestive imagery, non-sexual nudity, or graphic content may be removed if deemed too far outside of good taste for Debate Politics and/or is not directly related to the discussion at hand. Threads started with a topic focusing on such imagery will be closed. Repeated instances of an individual posting such images can result in action that could lead to suspension of a users account.

20. Slurs - Slurs delivered in an offensive manner via threads, posts, signatures, or PM's are forbidden at Debate Politics. The Moderator Team defines a slur as a known and highly "charged" term directed at one of the “protected groups” identified in Rule 18.


- Specific additional rules are in effect in the *Breaking News* forums, the Middle East forums (including the I/P forum), the Abortion forum and the CT forum. Please read the Sticky Rules located at the top of these two forums. All threads related to global warming and climate will be housed in the Environment & Climate Issues forum. All discussions specific to the Israel and Palestine conflict are to be housed in the Middle East forum. Violation of these placement rules incur penalties. The Rules above also pertain to DP Blogs. Be advised that the Basement Forum is a separate entity with its own rules and consequences.

- The Mod Team will be editing thread titles when an in-thread warning has been put into place. The purpose of this is to notify the posters of the in-thread warning and to allow the moderators to track where specific in-thread warnings have been issued. Please be aware that members should read and head in-thread warnings even if they are a few pages back from current discussion. The thread title will have the following notation placed at the beginning of the thread title [W:###] where '###' is the post number of the in-thread warning. In the event that the moderator failed to note the thread title with the warning does not alter the fact that there is an in-thread in place. Users are responsible for reading the threads and the existence of in-threads warnings on their own. This practice is to assist with the notification process for all users. The absence of an in-thread warning notification in the thread title does not excuse behavior that takes place after the in-thread. For most threads, the title will not need to be shortened (there is a character limit for thread titles), however this may occur in rare cases.

- With the recognition that the passing of political leaders (and other figures) can be a tumultuous time stirring up a variety of feelings, from sorrow to elation, the Mod Team has strove to find a solution that will allow all facets of discussion concerning a persons death be done in a civil matter. New threads with a thread tag, the “R.I.P.” tag, should be treated with the same general respect and etiquette one would show at a funeral. It is a thread for members to express their grief or condolences and to speak about the dead or the family of the dead in a respectful way, free of mud slinging. The same story that is used in a R.I.P thread may be used to create a standard thread about the matter as well (and vise versa). Conversation in this thread will run per the normal rules of Debate Politics. Personal attacks about individuals speaking ill of the dead, as per the standard rules, will not be allowed. As long as the discussion remains within the rules and on topic it is fair game.

The Debate Politics Forum Rules were originally adopted on 11.06.04
For breaking above rules you may be warned/banned appropriately!

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