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Discuss creating forum rules

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libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04

Hello

These forums still don't have rules formed and I would therefore like us all to discuss what rules and policies should we create. So feel free to post your suggestions and proposals. They will be discussed and this discussion will be taken into account when rules are to be put together.

So far I have talked a bit about rules with a_thing on IRC channel (#libervis) specifically about the way we are gonna treat questions about proprietary, nonfree software.

What we agreed on so far is that people should be allowed to ask questions about proprietary software, but should also be let know that this is primarily a Free Software support site and that such questions may not always recieve all the answers they would hope for. The key is in education. Instead of jumping on those users bashing them for asking the wrong question we should educate them about alternatives and/or urge them to consider free alternatives (with which they're gonna gain much more support afterall).

In addition to this there was also the question of terminology (as in GNU/Linux vs. Linux for example). It is clear that this also cannot be strictly enforced on behalf of any of those two terms and it would be silly to attempt that, but just as with the issue of questions on nonfree software the best way to go about it would be to create some basic guidelines people should try to follow, ones which wont be strictly enforced.

That said, for above mentioned issues those guidelines would look something like this:

"Since this is a Free Software support community, questions about nonfree software would in most cases be taken as secondary."

The above is a guideline, a note letting people know where they stand if they're about to ask a question on proprietary software.

"Insults, verbal violence or "flaming" in general is not allowed.

If someone asks a question about unfree software, there should be no flaming on that person. Instead, they should be educated and kindly advised and urged to consider trying Free Software alternatives."

The above is a rule except for the part suggesting advice which is apparently a guideline. The rule says not to flame, period. If you just keep quiet and not give advice you're not breaking it.

"It is encouraged to use correct terminology on this site. A good and recommended reference to follow is at http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/words-to-avoid.html"

That is a pure guideline.

So, you should make a distinction between guidelines and rules. Guidelines aren't strictly enforced. They are only suggestions for how to behave, ones that would be best to follow. Rules on the other hand are strict and not keeping them has consequences (warnings, ultimately bans).

Feel free to continue the discussion with suggestions, ideas etc.

Thank you
Daniel

dylunio's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-20

Well, one could add these general rules:

* No spamming, etc.
* No linking to warez, pornography, etc. sites
* No offencive avatars etc.
* No duplicate posts.

these are rother geteral, and need padding out a bit.

On the subject of free-software rules, I like the ones you have stated, since free software needs to be the future, but for it to be the future, people must be educated in it Smiling

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Joined: 2005-12-21

My suggestion in regard to rules:
- make them necessary as events occur
- everyone, follow the ideals presented in the open source ideology Smiling
- use common sense

That ought to cover most matters. Smiling

a thing's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-20

Since when was this about open source...?

New suggestions:
Do not use anything that will screw up the page width, such as wide images or long URLs. Link to wide images and use URL tags that display something short for long URLs.

NO ANIMATIONS.

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04

dylunio: I agree, those are some standard rules that should definitely be in.

klepas: What do you mean by "make them necessary as events occur"? I didn't really understood that..

"a_thing" wrote:

Since when was this about open source...?

I agree with your stance. It is really about Free Software, but many call that "open source" as well, a term I don't support. Anyway, I'd just suggest that when rejecting a term we explain why are we rejecting it although I think klepas would know what is the difference. Open source is a name stamped on Free Software as part of the campaign that started in 1998 that pushed Free Software ideology a bit behind and promoted Free Software on it's technical merits alone.

The official position of Nuxified.org would be that Free Software would be the right term to use.

That doesn't mean anyone should be jumped on for using different terms though nor would wars between "open source" and "Free Software" camps be allowed (or any wars whatsoever). Healthy discussions on the topic yes, but jumping on people and flaming no.

That also doesn't mean that only those who believe Free Software is the right term and philosophy are welcome. This is a technical support forum and anyone needing support for their Free Software no matter what they called it should get it. If you want philosophical discussions maybe the best place to go would be libervis.com Eye

Thought I'd just point that out.

Thanks
Daniel

AndrewB's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-18

no fighting with other users
no spamming
no werez etc posting
no pointless posting
post in the right forum section
no flaming of ideas
thou must talk on irc Wink

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Joined: 2005-12-21

What I meant was enforce rules and such as they are needed, not make a whole constitution at first. Of course we can suggest such things as use common sense and similar but for individual rules, let's not crack our backs over it, coming up with these various singular rules when they may not ever be needed. Smiling

How about we just make a general rule set/usage guideline for the Libervis network. Would make it easier, because it can just be used for the entire network.

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04

Well some set of rules must be established. There are some things we can easily predict we need rules for so why not anticipate them and create them now.

But yes, we don't need to crack ourselves trying to anticipate everything. That's not the intention. If the need for special rules comes up we can settle that on the way.

A general rule set can be made for whole network. Infact we could model rules for these forums on the rules of Libervis.com forums

Some base could be created, but I think some sites could have different requirements then others. Also, there may be other sites by different owners joining the network (which may actually be an alliance) and they shouldn't be subjected to rules too specific.

Thanks
Daniel

tbuitenh's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-21

Just start with the libervis forum rules, see what needs to be added to those, then see if those added rules would also make sense on libervis. If things are allowed in some places in the libervis network that aren't in other places in the same network, it's only going to cause confusion and noise and whatnot.

tbuitenh's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-21

The link to "words to avoid" is broken because of a dot after the .html .

"expressing affection" trough PM should only be allowed until the recipient of such messages asks the sender to stop (no stalking).
It is highly recommended to use email or another site for such conversations instead of this site. If you don't get their email address or account name at a dating site, stop stalking.

Idea free software powered dating sites? Rolling Eyes Laughing

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Joined: 2005-12-20

FOSS dating sites...members: 14....

Memberlist:
stojic
the_guy_dressed_in_black
libervisco
nihilanth
valan
dylunio
a thing
sdousley
onlinebacon
klepas
tbuitenh
spyro_boy
tuxxman and
Whistler

Rolling Eyes lol

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04

Good suggestions Taco. I'll modify rules to include that.

I am not sure if there's any exclusively FOSS powered dating site, but it might exist actually if it is hosted on a LAMP powered server and uses an inhouse coded dating software that is not distributed so it doesn't need a license and thus at least doesn't fall under proprietary software. I think there's alot of such sites even if their owners didn't deliberately made it so.

Btw, I wonder if there's any dating web service Free Software..

Onlinebacon, you named members of Nuxified.org and this is not a dating site, but yeah Laughing out loud Oh and there's just guys here so far it seems, no girls. Smiling

Cheers
Daniel

AndrewB's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-18
"libervisco" wrote:

Oh and there's just guys here so far it seems, no girls. Smiling

I vote sdousley to be the forum girl!

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04
"the_guy_dressed_in_black" wrote:

I vote sdousley to be the forum girl!

Laughing

Anyway.. back to topic. This thread is for forum rules suggestions (either for adding or modifying them). Smiling

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Joined: 2005-12-21
I'm just going through the

I'm just going through the rules a wee bit and I noticed some stuff that needs fixing as well as maybe some discussion alteration. Oh, and sorry if I'm reading through the document backwards. Living up to my strangeness I guess. :smiling:

The link to http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/words-to-avoid.html had a "." at the end in the link which resulted naturally in a 404. Fixed it.

Quote:

- Since this site is made primarily to encourage community support for Free Software and not proprietary software. It is therefore possible that questions involving solely proprietary programs may recieve less response than those involving Free Software. If someone asks a question about solely proprietary software he or she should not be anyhow attacked for it (that would be considered breach of rule 3 above), but instead offered an advice that may lead them to use a Free Software alternative.

Changed to:

Quote:

- Since this site is made primarily to encourage community support for Free Software and not proprietary software it is therefore possible that questions regarding solely proprietary programs may receive less response than those regarding Free Software. If someone asks a question about solely proprietary software he or she should not be anyhow attacked for it (that would be considered breach of rule 3 above), but instead offered an advice that may lead them to use a Free Software alternative.

Quote:

7. Please review your posts and comments for any errors before submitting them in order to make them easier and more comfortable to read.
This is not a strict rule and so it wont be enforced as such, but it is a guideline that you should strive to follow.

Changed to:

Quote:

7. [b]Please review your posts and comments[/b] for any errors before submitting them in order to make them easier and more comfortable to read. This is not a strict rule and so it won't be enforced as such, but it is a guideline that we'd like to uphold and encourage you to strive to follow primarily to avoid misconceptions due to errors and, as mentioned above, for a more comfortable read of the forums.

Quote:

Any kind of illegal activity is not allowed. This includes posts and threads that are related to warez, hacking (in negative and illegal manner), "piracy" and alike. Free software in this forum in no way refers to the software copied without authorization ("pirated") and warez, cracks and other ways of making proprietary software free to you. The term free software relates to the software published under licenses (such as GPL, LGPL, BSD etc) that allow free usage, copying, redistribution and modifying the source code and not to cracked proprietary programs.

Added the following line to the end of the above quoted paragraph:

Quote:

However, of course, discussing the affects of something like warez in relation to free software or similar is acceptable and fine.

Quote:

4. - No pornography and alike posts, threads and images

Posting threads and posts regarding the pornography and alike content is not allowed. And we especially forbid posting any kinds of porn images and images that reveal certain parts of the body. This goes for any images posted or linked to from this site including attachements, inline images, and avatars.
The public display of affection toward a certain person is also not allowed. Please, do it via PM system. This is definitely not a kind of a forum for that and it should be clear even if we didn't included this in our rules, but here, we did, just in case someone enters to disrupt the good spirit and decency.

Changed to:

Quote:

[b]4. - No pornographic content.[/b]

Posting threads and posts regarding pornography and alike content is not allowed. This goes especially in regard to images. Please keep pornographic content and even content displaying nudity off the forums. This goes for any images posted or linked to from this site including attachements, inline images, and avatars.
The public display of affection toward a certain person is also not allowed. Please, do it via PM system.
This is definitely not a kind of a forum for the above mentioned content and actions and this should be quite clear from browsing the site after a few moments. If you are interested in such things that is fine but this is not the place for it. Please respect the community and the purpose this forum serves.

Under rule 2, I altered this:

Quote:

If you accidentally make a double post it will of course be tolerated. The double post will be removed leaving the original one.

to this:

Quote:

It is possible to make a "double post" by pressing the submit button more than once while trying to post a reply. You can one of the double posts yourself. If you miss a moderator will probably find and delete one of the posts for you.

Alright that's it. I also fixed any spelling/grammar/punctuation mistakes I came across. If what I altered isn't what you guys are after please feel free to change it again, but posting the original (current part of the rules you're editing) and then your alteration would be handy in case we need to change it back. That's why I quoted paragraphs and sentences I edited above.

tbuitenh's picture
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"libervisco" wrote:

it might exist actually if it is hosted on a LAMP powered server and uses an inhouse coded dating software that is not distributed so it doesn't need a license and thus at least doesn't fall under proprietary software.

I think undistributed software is proprietary too.

libervisco's picture
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I agree with your changes klepas. Good work. I have only changed the signature at the end from "Danijel Orsolic and the Nuxified Team" to just "The Nuxified Team". There doesn't need to be my name specifically mentioned there since I am part of that team.

Taco, we could discuss this here not to go offtopic in this thread again. Smiling

Thanks

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Joined: 2006-01-10

I think the acronym RTFM should be banned. I also think people should be banned for posts encoraging the use of proprietary software such as "If you don't want to learn linux then you should go back to windows." I have unfotunatly seen this alot on other boards that are very nummerous in the linux community. The other thing is the nummerous posts made by newbies that get totatly ignored. They scroll down to the bottom of the page and the newbie gives up on it. Sometimes I think the whole linux community is nothing but a front to torment newbies for the sadistic pleasure of it. It is hard to imagine, but at one point, linux was harder to use than DOS or Unix.

As much fun as the torment of newbies can be, I think in the long run, it is bad for you as well as everyone else. More users of free-software encorages the creation of more and more free-software. Windows is something I wouldn't even wish on my most hated enemy. Another user of the proprietary opperating system is just an inducement to write proprietary software. In addition to not being able to modify the source code, proprietary software is often more difficult to modify in other ways as well, such as adding or replacing the artwork.

libervisco's picture
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Welcome Jastiv.

I agree with you about the whole newbie tormenting issue. Instead of being ignored and worse treated badly just because they don't know something that is obvious to the potential helper, they should be educated and guided to become experienced GNU/Linux users. In the end, somebody helped us so we ought to help them.

If an expert GNU/Linux user, instead of RTFMing someone or sending them back to windows, helps a newbie, the newbie will be encouraged to grow his or her experience in diverse directions possibly to a point where the one who helped may need help from that former newbie. It is a circle where you gotta give to take.

So yeah, if you ask me, I agree it should be a rule not to post RTFM and "go back to windows (or any proprietary softrware)" replies, but that is the kind of thing that may be better put as a guideline rather than a strict rule. It actually goes in line with the guideline already in place:

Quote:

- Since this site is made primarily to encourage community support for Free Software and not proprietary software it is therefore possible that questions regarding solely proprietary programs may receive less response than those regarding Free Software. If someone asks a question about solely proprietary software he or she should not be anyhow attacked for it (that would be considered breach of rule 3 above), but instead offered an advice that may lead them to use a Free Software alternative.

So, we can add an additional sentence mentioning specific examples of the behaviour that can turn people down from further trying GNU/Linux and Free Software in question.

In some cases the "Read The Friendly Manual" advice is perfectly suitable, but then it would be ideal if that, if you are replying to someone who asks for a solution that is right there in some obvious manuals, you point to that manual and advice that in the future checking out manuals would be a good idea.

If otherwise you are angry at such a question being asked, then don't reply at all.

Thanks
Daniel

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Joined: 2005-12-21

I see your point Jastiv. I know that it's frustrating for newbies sometimes, not just in the case being new to GNU/Linux. I'd like to add my viewpoint on this "then go back to windows" problem.

I've said it. I still do. And I do it often. Why? Because about 40% of the people I meet and have a chat with concerning computing and GNU/Linux are either end-users not interested very much in computing at all or just blatantly reject GNU/Linux, for numerous reasons, such as "it's crap", "it's not going to run my current programs", "it's not very well supported", "it's free, therefore it must be inferior", and so forth.

I'm active locally and abound in the community, including introducing people to GNU/Linux. I've got a box of about 180 Ubuntu breezy CDs in my room and I intend to give them all away. The reason why I've used "well just stick with Windows then" is because I give up on a lot of people, simply because they themselves have given up. I'm not going to push someone to do something they've already rejected. If they don't have the mindset to be willing to learn something new, after I've given them the CD, the ways of getting help and in some cases even installed and gotten everything ready for them, then frankly I couldn't care less. It's primarily their loss and since the number of new people that are this negative usually are less than 50% then I think I'm already doing enough good.

So, in some cases, if a newcomer enters here and all they do is bitch and whine on and on about how MP3 support isn't out of the box, or why program A doesn't have function X then frankly my patience wears thin. Quite simply if they aren't willing to put some effort in themselves as well as thank the people that are helping then I think we can do without them.

Therefore I suppose we don't need to tell them to go back to Windows, but rather "use what you want, do what you want and perhaps go back to whatever you were using before if you think this isn't good enough".

tbuitenh's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-21

Instead of saying RTFM, point to the appropriate part of the appropriate manual (might be man page, info page, website...) and also quote that part, and also put it in your own words in a next post if it is not understood. If someone seems to be too lazy to look up a manual (and gets the instead-of-RTFM thing a lot), you might ignore their posts, but still never say RTFM.

Make that a rule.

a thing's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-20
"klepas" wrote:

I see your point Jastiv. I know that it's frustrating for newbies sometimes, not just in the case being new to GNU/Linux. I'd like to add my viewpoint on this "then go back to windows" problem.

I've said it. I still do. And I do it often. Why? Because about 40% of the people I meet and have a chat with concerning computing and GNU/Linux are either end-users not interested very much in computing at all or just blatantly reject GNU/Linux, for numerous reasons, such as "it's crap", "it's not going to run my current programs", "it's not very well supported", "it's free, therefore it must be inferior", and so forth.

I'm active locally and abound in the community, including introducing people to GNU/Linux. I've got a box of about 180 Ubuntu breezy CDs in my room and I intend to give them all away. The reason why I've used "well just stick with Windows then" is because I give up on a lot of people, simply because they themselves have given up. I'm not going to push someone to do something they've already rejected. If they don't have the mindset to be willing to learn something new, after I've given them the CD, the wa