The rules are set up to respect people, companies, and property.
No ad hominem attacks (discuss the question/answer, not the person. Sometimes it's hard to separate the two - discretion is the better part of valor)
No advertising of your work or the place you work (use the Classifieds or become a Sponsor)
No advertising of events. Those belong in the Announcements section. Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org 2-3 weeks minimum before the event. I only update weekly.
No mentioning of sales or offers to buy are allowed on the BBoards. Use the Classifieds. You are of course free to email privately.
No obscenites/foul language (I will determine the limits as necessary, but if you wouldn't say it in a room full of 8 year olds, don't say it here).
No using the BBoard to determine a selling price for something you're about to part with. Check Ebay or the Classifieds for similar equipment.
No auction (eBay or otherwise) links, references, comments, or questions about currently selling items. NO EXCEPTIONS! There are good reasons for this, with a primary reason being egregious shilling, sometimes (oftentimes) obscured by alternate screen names and email addresses. Educational references after a sale has concluded are fine.
No doing people's homework for them - however, helping with references or helping after someone has exhausted their local resources is most welcome.
No pointing out spelling errors - even in jest. If you have something to contribute to the thread, you of course should spell everything in your answer correctly - no need to propagate the mistake!
No copying of entire articles from other places unless there is no link and you have explicit permission from the author and from me. Linking is the preferred method if at all possible. Short quotes ( < 30 words or about 3 sentences) are fine without contacting me.
No uploading attachments unless you own them or have permission from the owner and from me. Most people are happy to give permission for use - contact them first!
No posting of people's personal telephone numbers. Ever! Even if you have permission! Only business phone numbers. Ditto for personal email addresses unless you have permission. Use the business email address.
No posting of email ever unless you have explict permission from the sender (and receiver if you weren't the original intended recipient) and you've received explicit permission from me (I will verify that the sender said it was OK to post)
Factual information about existing companies is welcome; make sure that you're using verifiable information, not just guesses.
Don't accuse people of crimes; that's what courts are for. If some company or some person has personally treated you badly, that's a fine thing to discuss, but be very careful not to call them a criminal!
The Search function works very well. Please use it before posting a new question. With the hundreds of thousands of collected posts and articles from different sources, the chances are very good it has been asked and answered before.
Don't bump postings to the top just to see them again (they scroll off the screen onto older pages purposely). Add links if you want to refer to them, and if it's a posting that no one ever answered please either wait a couple of weeks and post again or contact a moderator to ask permission to bump it.
You may oftentimes disagree with the moderator's handling of posts and people. While we welcome personal emails asking why we do particular things, those discussions don't belong on the BBoard. We will reverse decisions on occasion (yes, we can get things wrong), but we won't be dragged into a public fight.
If one of the moderators makes a comment in your posting, do not delete the comment!. We did it for a reason.
If you're just posting to see your name up there (the "I agree/disagree" responses, with no new contribution or some wide-eyed guess of no real value) - don't. There's near 200,000 postings in this BBoard, and the more "noise" we get the less useful the search function is. Remember, your posting might be up here for a long time, and it reflects on you. Will you be proud of your post in 10 years?
The moderators have final say in what goes up and stays up. There are times we let the rules "bend" just a bit, so it may appear arbitrary, but it's not nearly as arbitrary as you may think. We take into account the poster's contributions over time, and we may have discussed the post prior to you seeing it and decided to allow it.
How do I link text or insert links into my messages?You can link urls by enclosing them in <>; however, you've got to get things perfect, with no spaces after the < and none before the >. I suggest that to link text to a url, you use this method:
or, to simply link the url itself, you use
To insert an email link, use
Can I insert images into my messages?It's not a good idea - servers & homepages change frequently. Uploading your image is a better choice.
Can I format my message with bolding, italics, and other decoration?You can use the special [ ] codes in your message to apply different style to your message. For example to bold something, you would enter
Other styles include
preserve all spacing and
How do I build a forum like yours?To build ours, we started with Phorum and built on it to make what you see today.
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