Sciforums - Rules, posting guidelines and advice to members (summary) Sciforums is an intelligent community that encourages learning and thoughtful discussion. We expect and welcome contributions that inform as well as stimulate discussion and debate. At its foundation, sciforums focused on discussion of Science. As the forum developed, our interests broadened to include Philosophy and Ethics, Religion, World Events and Politics and other topics. However, we retain in all areas of debate an ethos of respect for the scientific method, which demands critical analysis, clear thinking and evidence-based argument. Vigorous debate is expected, but we expect all participants to treat each other with courtesy and basic good manners, and to abide by reasonable standards of intellectual integrity and honesty. Contributions to sciforums inevitably reflect the personal views of the members. As a result, from time to time, one side of any given debate may be over-represented. Readers should not conclude that we therefore endorse one side over the other. While we welcome contributions that reflect the diverse range of perspectives and experiences of our members, we do not believe in an unlimited right to free speech. Rather, we seek to provide a welcoming environment conducive to the critical examination of topics of discussion. This post is a summary of the most important rules and posting guidelines that we expect members to follow. For much more complete information, refer to the long-form rules in the following posts. Posting and moderation Posting on sciforums is a privilege, not a right. All material published on sciforums is at the discretion of the moderator team. Moderation may include editing, moving or deletion of posts or threads. Moderator actions are usually documented in some way, though members may not be contacted personally. The forum rules and guidelines are enforced at the discretion of the moderators. Sciforums is moderated bearing in mind the stated aims and ethos of the forum; we will not be bound by the letter of the rules as written, but by the spirit of the rules. When posting: Start new threads in the appropriate subforum. Do not cross-post. Post on-topic. Avoid going off on a tangent - if you have to, start a new thread. Post personal information at your own risk. Be aware that you may be held legally liable for material you post. Be aware that your posts may remain on sciforums for years to come. Post clearly and coherently. Support your arguments with evidence. Extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence. Avoid logical fallacies. Do not breach copyright laws. Do not post private messages to the public forums. Do not expect members to do your homework for you. Feedback and complaints Post general feedback in the Site Feedback subforum. Post matters of general interest regarding site policies and moderation in the Open Government subforum. Complaints about individual moderators should be directed to administrators using Personal Messaging. Do not post them in the public forums. To report breaches of the site rules, use the 'report' button on offending posts. Netiquette Abide by basic standards of good manners and courtesy. Remember the human who is reading your post. Do not insult or harass other members. Avoid engaging with members with whom you have a personality clash. Beware of the potential for discussions to become heated - particularly religious and political discussions. Do not flame other members. Do not engage in ad hominem attacks (i.e. attack the argument, not the person). Avoid straw-man arguments. Behaviour that may get you banned Personal attacks on another member, including name-calling. Threats. Stalking. Flaming. Hate speech. Posting another member's private information without explicit consent. Posting gratuitous comments or images of an obscene, sexual, violent or graphic nature. Excessive profanity. Repeated off-topic posting. Plagiarism. Knowingly posting false or misleading information. Spamming or advertising. Posting on behalf of a banned member. Trolling. Repetitive or vexatious posting. Interfering with moderation. Propaganda, preaching, proselytising or evangelising. Being a repeat-offending drain on moderator time and effort.