Once again we find ourselves in the off-season which also means we find ourselves with an influx of new site members. With that in mind, I wanted to once again update our site rules and re-post them for those of you that have yet to see them, have for whatever reason not seen them and for the rest of us that could use a refresher. If you can think of any rules or tips that might need to be added I am always open to suggestions. In fact, any suggestions you have for the site can be sent to any of the editors at any time. My email address, like those of every other site author, can be found via the masthead link on the right side of the front page, in the "About" link under the "More" drop-down on the navigation bar, or at the bottom of the page.
These rules are in place for the obvious reason of keeping things running smoothly and keeping things civil among our many members. If you are new to the site this is a great reference and for the rest of us, it might not hurt to brush up on the site rules from time to time.
As always, anytime you see a violation of the site rules or something that you find offensive please flag these items. Under each comment is a highlighted area that says actions. If you click that you can choose to "rec" the comment (recommend the comment to others) or "flag" the comment. If you select flag it will then give you a pop-up box where you can explain why this comment was flagged. Only moderators can see these flags but they are a great help in picking up things that violate the rules given all the posts and comments that we must try and cover in any given day.
Flags do not always result in a warning, or even having the comment removed, but they bring something questionable to the attention of the site moderators and are still greatly appreciated and are an enormous help in keeping the site civil and an enjoyable place for everyone to visit. Again - no one sees that the comment (or post) has been flagged except for the four people with "moderator" permissions. Use of the flag function is an important tool that helps us keep the site a comfortable place for all Dolphins fans to visit and share their opinions.
1. Treat everyone on the site with respect. This includes visiting bloggers from other sites. Do not assume that just because someone is a fan of another team that they are here to troll. In fact, we have many regulars to the site that are from other blogs and are fans of other teams. They deserve the same respect as any of the Dolphins fans. Likewise please do not go to other sites to merely troll. The managing editor receives a report on every warning or ban that any of our site members receive. It does not look good on any of us when someone is slapped on the hand that has a Dolphins related screen name or avatar. If someone is obviously only on the site to troll then please, as always flag them so that we may address it.
2. If you disagree with a point of view please address the point made and not the person. Personal attacks will NOT be tolerated! Remember everyone has a right to their own opinion. If you attack another blogger the concept of "he/she started it" does not apply. Flag it and move on. It's just the internet after all. Likewise, making a comment on a post to tell someone "it sucks," or any other insult of the post will be seen as a personal attack on the author and will not be tolerated. Remember that not every post is going to be for everyone. If you don't dig what's being written about please just move on as there is always plenty of content on the site and something for everyone. In the case that a post is put up that is inappropriate or you believe in some other way violates the site rules please flag it as well. The flag for the posts can be found at the top of the page.
3. Please try and keep the threads on topic. The obvious exclusion are the open live threads and or CKC's (cool kid's club-see below). For the most part, just friendly banter is not an issue and encouraged.
4. Please keep the swearing to a minimum. The occasional word here and there is one thing but please do not go from comment to comment or write a post dropping one word after another. This also applies to live game threads!
5. Please do not post picture after picture in any thread or from thread to thread indiscriminately. Keep picture posting to a minimum as we are a very large community and too many pictures do not only distract from the issues we are discussing but will slow down the load times for those on slower connections. If you have a lot of pictures you would like to share with us, especially if it is from a Dolphins game or event that is in some way Dolphins related, please feel free to make your own Fan Post and place as many as you would like in the body of that post.
6. When posting picture's please use common sense. Nudity, body paint, see through clothing, racist, hateful, sexist, or anything else with an offensive slant is strictly prohibited from being posted on the site. A good rule of thumb is if you would not show the picture to your grandmother then it probably does not belong here either.
7. NO discussions of politics or religion on the site. These discussions, in general, do more harm than good. A general conversation about world events will happen. Just do not turn it into an us vs. them conversation as it applies to politics. This is the rule that seems to upset people the most but also one that we are very strict about. There are countless other blogs out there for discussions of anything including politics and/or religion.
8. Make all members welcome! It does not matter if you have been here for four years or just joined this morning. No one's opinion is more valid than the next person's. In fact, it would be a nice gesture of those of us that have been here for some time go out of our way to welcome the new members to the site and offer our help with any questions that they may have. Also providing a link to this post, which can be found at all times at the top of the page under the Library section, would be helpful to the new member.
9. There are a lot of jokes that go on between members here on the site. If you feel like you are being targeted or hassled too much, let us know and it will stop. If someone tells you to get off their back or to back off, respect that request. As always, if it bothers you email us and it will be addressed.
10. No posting of any links to illegal ways of watching NFL games! Also, no requesting of any links or hinting at the offer or request of such links. Automatic two-week ban for those who do not follow this policy. The NFL is very strict on this stuff and we don't feel like having the blog shut down because others are posting illegal info. The NFL's legal department is very tough - trust me. This is a zero tolerance rule. If you break this, you are done. It will happen at some point this season. Don't let it be you. This rule has always stated NFL games but this rule also applies to ANY links that would be construed as illegal.
11. Racist, sexist, homophobic or any other comment's that would be considered hate speech or otherwise offensive are strictly prohibited. Even if you think a term is harmless think long and hard before posting any comment that singles out any ethnic group or sexual orientation. These kind of comments will most often result in a banning and at the very least will be followed by a warning.
12. Please remember that while this is a site primarily made up of men we do have some female Dolfans (and of course 808 who is a friendly Pats fan) on the site. This is a sports blog and while many of us have become friends via this site this is NOT a dating site. Please show these women the respect they are due. Any sexist comments made towards a female (or from a female to a male for that matter) poster will result in a warning or a ban even if the recipient is not offended by said comment.
14. Please keep typing in all caps to a minimum. To make the occasional statement is understandable but comment after comment after comment (or large comments) posted in all caps is not only annoying to other posters but all caps is looked at the same way as yelling and thus is considered rude behavior on the internet. Please also apply this rule to Fan Posts or Fan Shots in all bold letters. These will also result in a warning and will most likely just be removed from the site.
15. Spamming of any site on SBN is strictly prohibited. Spamming is the repeated posting of anything on a site from post to post or the obvious posting of links to promote some other site. This most often takes the form of a link to another site but can be in the form of anything posted repeatedly. Not only will spamming of any type result in a ban but this is more often than not followed by a banning from any and all other SBN sites that you may be a member of whether or not you have spammed their site. Also, the posting of the same comment or pic or anything over and over in numerous posts on the site will be considered spamming and result in a possible warning. If you post something in a couple of places nearly everyone here will see it as most members read everything. If it's that important perhaps consider making a Fan Shot or Fan Post out of it. Also in the realm of spamming, from the SBN point of view is the posting of anything as a fan post or a fan shot specifically designed to promote another site. If you work for or have another site you are welcome to come and write articles but only if they are original articles of original content not found elsewhere.
16. Show respect for others work when writing a post. It is fine to point out an article as a source or to quote a piece of an article but cutting and pasting entire articles is prohibited. Also out of due respect to the original author always cite the article and the author or the site from which you found or quoted the information.
17. Sig lines. We have a rule to keep sig lines on profiles to 5 lines or less. This keeps people from putting a full bio there and making each of their comments unnecessarily large.
If you do something on the site that results in a warning do not take it personally. Most here have had one at one time or another. Often times it's simply a way for to send you a message and ask you to cool it before we have to take more severe actions. Likewise, if you have an issue with a warning and feel that you must say something, please email us directly. We are always more than happy to discuss these with you. Coming to the site and posting angry comments is not the way to address something that you do not agree with and we do not discuss these warnings in the threads on the site. We do not want to lose readers or members but merely keep the site a place that everyone feels comfortable.
Tips and additional tidbits-
CKC aka Cool Kids Club- A late night open thread that is posted after 10PM EST and then taken down early the next morning by the site mods. These posts tend to be a little looser than a regular thread and any subject within reason is open for discussion. As always please use common sense when posting, CKC or not. All rules still apply including the one on personal attacks and posting of nudity.
The Z key- The day that you discover will be one of the best day's of your life. I am not saying that it's as exciting as the birth of a child but it may come in a close second. When in a thread, especially a live thread, use the Z key to take you to the next comment in the order that it was posted. This is especially helpful during live thread with a lot of people in them at the same time allowing you to easily follow several conversations at the same time.
The up key- There is an arrow with the word up next to it under every comment that is a reply to a comment in a thread. Sometimes it gets confusing to which comment it is a reply to. If you click on the arrow it will take you up and highlight the comment that it was in response to.
Sarcasm Font- To denote a comment as sarcasm you type your comment in the main body portion of the comment box and type the @ symbol DIRECTLY before and after the comment.
@Exactly like this!@
The edit feature- We now have the ability to edit our own comments. After you post a comment in a thread you will see a bar appear that will quickly get smaller and a countdown going from 90 to 0. If you make a mistake or have a second though you have 90 seconds to edit your own comment. To edit the comment simply click where it says edit and the comment box will reappear. You then have the remainder of the 90 seconds from the time that you posted it to edit it. If not edited and then posted in the 90 seconds your edits will not take place.
Contextual Sharing- Our newest site feature is contextual sharing. Details can be found HERE!