Post by Admin Team on Sept 19, 2008 12:14:04 GMT
Because of the above, the forum staff do undertake the running of the forum on a more formal level than other similar types of media; to that end, rules have been devised to ensure that all forum users know what's expected regarding their behaviour and general use of the forum.
Rule 1 (New Members)
- (1a) New members must have their account approved by a staff member before it becomes fully active.
- (1b) New member accounts will be approved as quickly as possible but the process may take a few days, depending on the verifications that may be deemed necessary by the staff member(s) dealing with new account sign-ups.
- (1c) Usernames and/or email addresses must not contain foul language - any accounts that do so will automatically be denied/removed as appropriate.
Rule 2 (Accounts)
- (2a) All accounts are subject to ProBoards own terms and conditions.
- (2b) Members should only have one account.
- (2c) If a member wishes to change their user name, they must consult with a forum staff member first - usually, members should allow at least three months between user name changes.
- (2d) User name changes will attract the addition of red text to a members profile for a minimum period of at least 14 days.
- (2e) The Admin Team may permit a member to have additional accounts (eg. Forum Staff for testing purposes); these will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
- (2f) If a member is found to have more than one account which has not been previously authorised by the Forum Administrators, then all associated accounts may be removed/suspended by any member of Forum Staff (see Rule 12).
- (2g) Accounts are periodically reviewed. Those that are not used and falling under the following criteria are removed:
1) signed up but not activated - 4 weeks
2) signed up and activated but not revisited - 3 months
3) signed up and visited but not for.......6 months (no posts made)
4) signed up and posts made but nothing for.......9 months.
This ensures our membership numbers are accurate in relation to active members.
Rule 3 (Private Messages)
- (3a) The Private Message facility is available to all members when logged in.
- (3b) A tutorial on how to use the PM facility is available by clicking HERE.
- (3c) The Private Message facility cannot be accessed by the forum staff - all private messages are very much private between the sender and the recipient.
- (3d) The Private Message facility must not be used to advertise goods for sale, nor other forums or websites. These must only appear within the main forum boards where all members can see, subject to compliance with rules 6d & 6g below.
- (3e) The Private Message facility must not be used to approach TfL employees to ask for cab rides, private tours of work places or anything else deemed as similar in nature by the forum staff.
- (3f) As with the rest of the forum, the Private Message facility must not be used to send foul language, obscene images, extremist political or religious views, racism, innuendo or sexually related jokes. You may not know the person you are contacting as well as you think, so if the forum staff are asked to act on any of the above because the person receiving such a PM has been offended, they will act - you have been warned!!
- (3g) Personal attacks will not be tolerated.
- (3h) As per 3c above, the forum staff do not have access to the Private Message system, however they will intervene where a member makes a complaint and they have supplied a copy of the Private Message forming the basis of the complaint - this is the only point at which a forum staff member may become involved.
Rule 4 (Behaviour)
- (4a) Foul language, extremist, political or religious views, racism, and sexual/gender orientation is not allowed: the forum holds neutral views on all these topics. Foul language, obscene images, sexually related jokes, personal attacks, aggressive posting, etc. are not acceptable here.
- (4b) This forum operates a policy whereby if it's not suitable for a 13-year-old or younger to read, it is not suitable for this forum.
- (4c) The only exception to either rule 4a or 4b is that 'robust language' in the Rant Area may be tolerated providing it is totally within context - the use of asterisks (ie, **) would be advisable in this instance.
- (4d) Any Forum Member who gains (or attempts to gain) unauthorised access to Underground/TfL infrastructure (e.g. non-passenger areas such as train cabs/depots etc.) will have their membership permanently suspended without warning.
Rule 5 (Language)
- (5a) No text speak (e.g., C U L8R M8).
- (5b) Chat speak is permitted (click here for meanings).
- (5c) Use of grammar & punctuation is encouraged as it makes reading posts much easier.
- (5d) Most browsers incorporate a spell check facility and its use is encouraged.
- (5e) Please use the universal language of English when posting.
- (5f) Typing full words in capital letters is considered shouting, so please only use capital letters to spell out full words when in context.
Rule 6 (Posting)
- (6a) Spam posting is not tolerated here.
- (6b) Flooding (repeatedly posting replies to yourself) is not tolerated either.
- (6c) Quotes must not be edited to change the context of what the original poster posted. If a quote(s) originates from elsewhere, the source should be credited and, if applicable, a hyperlink inserted.
- (6d) Blatant advertisements of other transport forums is not good etiquette, although relevant links are fine!
- (6e) Posting on behalf of someone else is not acceptable - all posts must be made by signed-up members only........so why not join the forum and speak for yourself?!!
- (6f) Do not 'bump' threads (add something to a thread a long time after the last post) unless you are adding something of value.
- (6g) Advertising an item for sale, or seeking to directly solicit specific item(s) from the forum membership is not permitted on this forum. The posting of links to item (s) already listed with a website designed for the purpose (such as eBay) is fine providing you consult with an Administrator first.
- (6h) It is unacceptable to post in a manner that celebrates any illegal activity (e.g. graffiti, violence, trespass etc).
Rule 7 (What not to Post)
Some TfL information is considered sensitive and should not be posted here. Whilst there is no definitive list, examples include:
- (7a) Locations of line control rooms - we don't mind if you mention the general area such as 'Cobourg Street' or 'Wood Lane' - but please do not post pictures or maps or any other further detailed information.
- (7b) Security precautions.
- (7c) Internal phone numbers.
- (7d) Full names or personal details of employees.
- (7e) Details of an employee's whereabouts when on duty.
- (7f) Reproduction of documents or portions of documents marked 'internal use only', unless these have previously been published by TfL under their Freedom of Information scheme or similar.
7.1 (Unusual Train Movements)
This forum does not actively encourage the posting of the timings for unusual train movements for the following reasons:
- (7.1a) The information is usually available only within documents marked 'for internal use only'
- (7.1b) The timings can never be guaranteed - in fact these sort of movements often don't happen at the times published, if at all
- (7.1c) Making the details of such movements public could cause issues with unplanned overcrowding at stations or other locations
7.2 (Person Under Train incidents - also referred to as 'one unders')
Person under train incidents are a particularly difficult subject, so the following applies on this forum:
- (7.2a) Members are not permitted to enquire about the status of a person under train incident. Such posts or threads will be removed by the forum staff.
- (7.2b) LU staff that are directly involved in an incident may post a brief outline if they feel it is appropriate - however details of a fatal incident are not allowed in case of any prejudice at a future inquest.
- (7.2c) Discussion following such a post will be at the discretion of the forum staff.
In the past, members have posted items of sensitive information they've found within websites elsewhere on the internet - just because it's on another website, it doesn't mean we'll allow it here; the forum staff cannot 'police' other websites, but we are responsible for what appears on this forum.
7.3 (Serious Incidents and/or Major Events)
Serious incidents or other major events such as derailments, crashes, fires, weather, terrorist, etc (to give a few examples - this list is not exhaustive) can also prove to be a particularly difficult subject, especially in the early stages. These type of events will always lead to speculation and internal investigations. As a result the following applies on this forum:
- (7.3a) Forum staff members will confirm the facts when they have them to hand, though it may be some time time before this is possible.
- (7.3b) LU staff that are directly involved in an incident may post a brief outline if they feel it is appropriate - however as with our one under rule above, details of a fatal incident are not allowed in case of any prejudice at a future inquest.
- (7.3c) Discussion will be at the discretion of the forum staff, however in most cases once the facts have been confirmed, a given thread will most likely be locked to prevent non factual speculation.
- (7.3d) Should an official report be released, a request can be made to a member of forum staff to have a link added to the original locked thread. For further discussion after an official report has been released, a new thread should be started.
Given that this type of incident/event will be subject to official lines of enquiry and/or investigation, it is important that we do not allow this forum to become involved with speculation that would detract from the facts. Information may or may not be found within websites elsewhere on the internet - just because it's on another website, it doesn't mean it is factually correct or that we'll allow it here; again the forum staff cannot 'police' other websites, but we are responsible for what appears on this forum.
If you are in any doubt at all as to whether your post may contravene rules 7, 7.1, 7.2 or 7.3, please seek the advice of a forum staff member first.
Rule 8 (Images)
- (8a) All images posted should be hosted by yourself (click here to find out how to do this) to prevent copyright issues; otherwise please use a link and credit the copyright owner.
To further clarify rule 8a, in the first instance all images should be linked to their source rather than embeded within a post (ie, members should be directed to the web page that is hosting the image). If you are the copyright owner of an image and you are hosting it yourself [either on your own webspace or with a specialist image hosting website such as Flickr] you may embed the image within a post.
Scans or photocopies from books, official documents, etc would normally be considered an infringement of the original copyright unless permission was sought first.
Images on the forum are subject to limits affecting both pixels and file sizes:
- (8b) Avatars - Max size 150x150 pixels*, 150Kb
- (8c) Signatures - Text: max 5 lines / Image: max size 80x500 pixels, 100Kb
Combination of text & image allowed, but image must reduce in size to accommodate text
- (8d) Images within a post - Max size should ideally be around 800x500 pixels*, 300Kb*
*= Proboard's default maximum *= Images are automatically scaled to prevent page stretch issues, however we do prefer that you post images within the limits stated so that your image is viewed at its best across all internet enabled devices.
Rule 9 (Simulations)
Railway simulator discussion should be limited to requests for help unless you are a developer releasing information on your work. BVE discussion in particular has caused problems on this forum in the past - so past experience has unfortunately dictated this policy on this forum.
Rule 10 (Polls)
- (10a) The creation of polls requires the consent of a member of administration staff.
- (10b) Please note: all forum staff members will be able to see who has taken part in a poll, although they will not be able see who has voted for which option.
This rule no longer applies.
Rule 12 (Staff Powers)
Moderators are able to (where required):
- (12a) Edit any post
- (12b) Approve quarantined posts
- (12c) Move any post or thread
- (12d) Delete any post or thread
- (12e) Lock or unlock any thread
- (12f) Issue advice to members either within a public post or by PM (Private Message)
- (12g) Issue temporary suspensions
- (12h) 'Sticky' any thread
- (12i) 'Bump' any thread
- (12j) Make announcements
- (12k) Modify any member's profile (limited to removal of avatars, editing of signatures or removal of anything offensive only)
- (12l) Deal with new account approvals
- (12m) Moderators will also lock threads some time after they reach six months without any new posts. If a member wishes to add something of value to a locked thread, they may request that a Moderator or Administrator unlocks the thread for them, otherwise a new thread should be started.
The Moderator team can be contacted via the member 'Forum Staff', or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition to the same powers as Moderators, Administrators also have the following additional powers:
- (12n) Access to profiles for the additional purpose of adding or removing access to special member groups
- (12p) Access to all hidden information on members profiles (Proboards default)
- (12q) Issue formal warnings to members
- (12r) Issue suspensions or permanent bans to any member
- (12s) Ability to block IP & email address's
- (12t) Removal of some account privileges (ie, access to PM system)
- (12u) Responsibility for the setting of forum policies, rules, and decision making on any future changes to the forum layout
Details of any discipline action taken may or may not be made public knowledge. The decisions of the Administration staff will be always be final, after discussion amongst themselves, where a dispute exists.
draw members attention and explain the reasons for the change**