The following serves as the official discussion policy for users of RichardBuchanan.com's commenting and blogging tools. All participants in RichardBuchanan.com community discussions are required to follow these rules.
I am keeping commenting features open to all users, for now, so please do not force me to close commenting features to unregistered users. Every website has rules for community discussions, but it does not mean I have to give you a warning! This is your warning, and if you break these rules, don't be surprised if I block your comments and IP address.
First things first: If you can't be polite, don't even think of saying it. I don't want to stifle discussion of controversial issues. Some topics require blunt talk, and we're not always going to agree with each other. Nonetheless, please try to disagree without being disagreeable. This does not mean we need to agree to disagree, that's just non-sense anyway! Focus your remarks on positions, not personalities. No personal attacks, name calling, libel, defamation, comments about someone's mother, hate speech, comparisons to notorious dictators - you get the idea. If not, I simply don't care. It may not be illegal to be ignorant, but I sure as hell can ban you for it. And under no circumstances should you post anything that could be taken as threatening, harassing, bullying, obscene, pornographic, sexist or racist. I WILL contact local authorities and provide them with your IP address, without warning, no exceptions allowed.
Don't use obscenities -- even if the word in question is often used in conversation. I'm not going to list the words; you know what they are. And this doesn't mean I won't allow you to cuss, but remember this site is available to everyone... children included. If you wouldn't say it to a child, don't bother saying it here. Remember, this is a public forum and I want everyone to feel comfortable participating.
Anything you post should be your own work. You're welcome to link to relevant content and to quote limited amounts from other people's work with attribution and any associated copyright notice and consistent with "fair use" principles of copyright law. But that doesn't mean you can copy and paste wholesale.
Please stay on topic. Think of it this way -- if you hosted a book club meeting at your home, you wouldn't want someone to show up and insist on discussing reality TV shows. Rambling is the kiss of death. Keep your comments to 400 words or less. Generally, anything beyond a few paragraphs had better be very, very interesting to the larger community. I reserve the right to edit for brevity, clarity and other purposes.
Please respect people's privacy. We love to learn about new and interesting individuals, but most people will not be happy to have their phone numbers or e-mail addresses published. Please do not share another's contact information through RichardBuchanan.com's commenting or blogging tools.
Feel free to share your ideas and experiences about religion, politics and relevant products or services you've discovered... I sure as hell will. But this is not a place for advertising, promotion, recruiting, campaigning, lobbying, soliciting or proselytizing. I understand there can be a fine line between discussing and campaigning; please use your best judgment -- and I will use mine.
Do not "feed" the trolls. I encourage community members to report abuse by trolls. But I also ask that you not engage with trolls in the comment threads. Reacting to their provocations is exactly what they want. If I see you feeding a troll, I will remove both the troll's comments and your responses.
I appreciate the news tips members of the public send me. However, I reserve the right not to publicize rumors, allegations, conspiracy theories and other information which we know to be false or unsubstantiated. This does not mean I discourage or will remove discussions based on conspiracy theories. This is a special breed of ideology which I definitely do not intend to stifle. Just do not ask me to write an article or blog post based on such non-sense.
Be yourself - and not someone else. Don't post anything on the site posing as someone else. Impostors, look elsewhere for kicks.
Please don't use the commenting and blogging tools for individual communications. Each blog has a link (it's above the blog post) for sending individual messages to a blogger.
Similarly, if you have comments about this website in general, please don't use the site discussion threads to air them. For issues regarding RichardBuchanan.com's editorial content or policies, use the site contact form.
You are solely responsible for the content you post. I am not responsible for the content posted by users. I do not and cannot review all user content posted on here. However, I have the right (but not the obligation) to review, screen, delete, edit and/or move any content posted on RichardBuchanan.com.