The official language to be used with all postings on these forums is English.
There is a fine line between discussion and argument which is at times hard to define. In general a discussion becomes an argument when the postings become personal and if this starts to become obvious then the Moderators will take necessary action which may include removal or locking of posts.
A troll is a person who posts inflammatory messages, to disrupt the discussion or to upset its participants. The word, or its derivative, "trolling", is also used to describe such messages or the act of posting them. This behaviour will not be tolerated.
These are usually caused by discussions turning into serious arguments as mentioned above. Please think before posting anything that would be defined as this sort of attack. For example "Username is an idiot" Personal attacks are not welcome on these forums and will be dealt with firmly. Contacting someone "off forum" to abuse them will be treated equally seriously if brought to our attention.
Impoliteness toward forum staff
This is when someone impolitely argues against any of the forum staff. (Forum staff include Sausagemaking.org staff, administrators and moderators.) An example would be: "How dare you lock that thread you stupid moderator!" However, saying something like "Could you please unlock my thread, because I feel there was no need for it to be locked." would be perfectly fine.
Use of inappropriate language
The use of swear words, or disguised swear words, in a post is not allowed on the forums. Any attempt to avoid the swear filter will be dealt with.
Cross Posting (Board Spamming)
We do not allow 'cross posting' where a user posts the same text in more than one forum. This wastes resources as forum users have to read posts twice. It also causes confusion to the original poster as they may well find that replies are disjointed over 2 or more threads.
Posts/threads in a totally wrong place
Please try and check that the topic you are starting is in the correct section of the forums. Moderators will move posts that are obviously in the wrong section.
Advertising on the forums
Forum users are not permitted to post advertisements or commercial solicitations on the forums unless previously approved by the site owner. This includes offering goods or services for sale and for profit. Non-profit offers of help from established members are of course very welcome. This includes offering goods or services for sale. However, there is no problem with users posting links to their web sites in signatures or posts, provided the posts are materially useful and are not simply seeking to promote their products (e.g. recommending themselves for every query).
Posting inappropriate material
Remember that these forums can be viewed by all ages and not just adults. sexual, racist items, expressing extreme political views or links to explicit material will be removed and if this is repeated then action will be taken against the poster.
Off Topic Posts (OT)
It is inevitable that threads in forums can veer off course from the original topic. Rather than drag a thread off topic, you should start a new thread in the appropriate forum and post a link in the original thread. Please note that reasonable deviations from a topic's starting point are allowed, if discussions on the topic's original subject have finished.
User removal of a moderators note
If a moderator leaves a note in a post, this must not be removed. They are left so the forum community knows what has happened to the post, and why the moderator has carried out any action. Hence, we treat this unofficial removal very seriously.
Posting of Personal Details
Without the express permission of the user these are not to be posted on the forums. This includes the content of pm's (personal forum messages) or emails received from moderators or staff.
All CAPS titles/posts
These can be annoying not only because in general "netiquette" they represent shouting, but the letters are also harder for the human brain to distinguish, thus making them harder to read. Therefore, posting in all caps is not permitted.
Certain signature images that are available for use on the Internet reveal information like your IP Address and Browser. These are not allowed on the forums as some more inexperienced users feel that these are in some way breaching their security and privacy.
Avatars, Profiles and Signatures
The forum moderators reserve the right to ask any member to change their Avatar and/or Signature, should they feel that it is inappropriate, or does not comply with the following guidelines;
Avatar size should be limited to 80 x 80 pixels and a maximum file size of 20K.
Use of any Sausagemaking.org graphics as an Avatar is reserved for staff.
Signatures should use no more space than 4 lines of standard sized text would, this includes any blank lines and images you choose to use. Image based signatures should be limited to 80 x 560 pixels and a maximum file size of 20K.
If you include links to businesses in profiles or signatures this may be identified in an audit as spamming and your account may be deleted.
Choice of forum Displayname
The forum moderators reserve the right to ask any member to change their displayname, should they feel that it is inappropriate, disrespectful or an attempt impersonate another user.
Examples of an unacceptable name could be "Administrator" or "Fr@nco" .
Too many emoticons
Please don't overuse emoticons, too many make it difficult to read a post.
Some people think it is amusing to post in "rubbish" language... i.e. using odd characters instead of letters or even letters in no particular order. This is not permitted.
Bumping of posts
"Bumping" is the act of adding to a thread just to get your topic back to the top of the list in a forum and should not be done.
Users who keep bumping their topics face action that may include the locking of the topic and / or removal of forum access.
Quoting other messages
Quotes can be a very useful way of making your reply to a post clearer by indicating which post or part of a post you are referring to.
However using them incorrectly can be annoying and make threads very hard to read.
The following rule applies to the use of quotes.
Only quote the full content of a post if :-
a) it is NOT the post immediately before your reply
b) You find that your reply has been forced onto a new page (then edit in the full quote if it's needed.)
In all cases you should think before quoting and wherever possible only use a part of the post you are replying to in order to make it clear which bit of a post your reply refers to.
The Moderators will remove unnecessary full quotes where they are posted immediately after the post being replied to.
If a poster is banned from posting or accessing the forums that ban includes using another members account or log on details to access the forums or asking another member to post on their behalf. This action could have consequences for the other forum member.
A ban will in the first instance be for a minimum of 48 hours while the case is considered by the Moderators and Sausagemaking.org staff. Following that it may be removed or extended depending upon the circumstances.
If the user then gets banned again it is more than likely possible that this next ban will be for an extended period of time and could even be permanent.