Rules discussion?

Is there a propper way or place to discuss the rules of the forum without being banned and/or censored/edited?
(Specifically the Website Review section)

Thread moved to “Forum Support & Feedback” forum

Sure thing, go right ahead. We’re not going to ban members for having constructive discussions! What is it that you would like to ask or suggest?

The most important thing to do is to get familiar with the FAQ/Rules

The next most important thing to do is read the Sticky threads found at the top of the thread list in each forum.

The FAQ are pretty much forum-wide and the Sticky threads apply to their respective forum.
They have evolved over time and though something might not make sense to you, there is most likely a good reason for it being there.

Generally, in most cases members who violate a policy are given an official Warning - with no points - in which they are told which policy(s) they violated and encouraged to read the FAQ
With continued good behavior the Warnings expire over time.
In some cases no official Warning will be issued, but a post might be edited with a “reason” to clue the member in as to why it was edited. Most often a “friendly PM” will be sent as well (not an official Warning).
In other cases, the member might get an official Infraction or even Banned. Most often because the member has previous non-expired Warnings and/or non-expired Infractions, or has posted blatant SPAM, is a multiple account, trying to be “sneaky”, etc.

If unsure about something, it is best to ask first. So as Stevie D said, ask away.
But please keep it “general” as we can not openly discuss any “private information” about any member.
We can not discuss private information about other member’s at any time in any way, nor will we discuss our many ways of detecting and identifying violations, but we can discuss a member’s private information with them by Private Message.

Thank you for your replay. That answers all the questions that I previously asked you!

It’s also worth noting that if you think you have been unfairly treated by a moderator, and you can justify that in relation to the FAQ/rules, you can appeal – send a PM to either the team leader for that section of the forum (names in blue) or HAWK, and explain your grievance and why you think that what you did was OK. We’re human (well, most of us :cool:) and sometimes we make mistakes, sometimes we make a judgement call based on the evidence we can see but there may be more to it than we have realised. If we got it wrong, we’ll 'fess up and wipe the penalty. We’re not here to arbitrary penalise people – we’re here to make the forums run as smoothly as we can, and we don’t want to end up banning or turning away people who could be good forum members for trivial reasons or mistakes.

Interesting read. However could not find the external link policy.

Despite the fact that all external links are nofollow, some still post links for the wrong motives.

True, the FAQ/Rules don’t have a specific “link policy”, rather, much is left to the judgement of Moderators.

My summary:

Zero Tolerance for Spam

SitePoint Forums have zero tolerance towards spam. Spammers are not welcome.

SitePoint Forums were created with the purpose of helping others, discussing web design and development and providing a nurturing environment for improving our skills. The forum should not be used as a promotion tool.

This forum includes a number of features to discourage spammers.

Spammers may be warned, infracted or banned at our discretion.

read - if you link drop for the wrong reason, it’s SPAM

Asking for critiques

To post a request for a critique, you should first have critiqued others’ work. You can read more about the requirements here: here.

read - as long as you meet the criteria, a link is needed to allow for Review.

Self promotion/self-linking

When you post, don’t promote a site or a product and don’t link to your site unless the resource genuinely adds value to the discussion. If a moderator thinks that your link does not add value, it will be treated as self-promotion and deleted. Self promotion may earn you a warning or infraction.

You may:

Link to an article that you may have published on your own site and that answers a question posted in a thread
Link to an under development site for which you are requesting input ([reviews and critiques forum](
Announce an industry event - provided you keep it factual and not overly spammy

You may not:

Promote your services through a descriptive dialog
Point members to a site linked through your signature
Invite members to PM you for a service
Post a question for the express purpose of concocting a scenario that invites yourself (or a friend or colleague) to post a link to your own site
Suggest your product as an answer to a request or search for all the threads that deal with your line of business (old and new) to expose your signature.

Affiliate links, coupons, and offers

Affiliate links, coupons, offers are not welcome. DO NOT:

Post coupon codes, discounts, offers
Ask for coupons, codes, discounts, invitations to services, etc.
Post affiliate links. Links to Outwar and similar types of schemes are acceptable, as these are links to games. However, it should be obvious from the outset where the links lead to.

This is a serious offence that will often earn you an infraction or banning.

Piracy, warez, adult sites, and illegal content

No sharing of warez or pirated material, please. It is not cool. Likewise, don’t post any work (even a small piece of it) unless you have express permission from the owner or creator of the piece or work. You’ll be responsible for copyright infringement – not us. It is better if you link to it. It will save you some lawyers’ fees!

Additionally, links to adult sites are not allowed.

SitePoint may also remove discussions that are thought to violate applicable law or that may be harmful to other members, the sites that comprise SitePoint, or the rights of SitePoint Pty. Ltd. or others.

read - if a Moderator(s) believe a post was made re the “you may”, no problem. if believed made re the “may not” the post may result in a Warning, Infraction, or Ban

Rule of thumb, if in doubt PM a Moderator and ask before making the post.

Most of those points are common sense. The odd one is a bit vague. Does one ever get banned for a “false positive”?

As a friend used to say “Common sense isn’t so common”

I don’t know which you mean by the “odd one”.

False Positive? I hope not, though it may rarely occur I suppose. Moderators don’t Ban lightly. There needs to be compelling evidence and we often seek consensus before taking action.

If there’s ever something that you’d like to post/ask about, and you can’t decide whether it’s allowed under the forum rules, the easiest (and safest) thing to do is to ask a moderator before you post it. At the foot of any forum main page, you’ll find a list of moderators for that particular forum. Just drop one of them a PM. We’re here to help. :slight_smile: