I'm not too bothered about spelling, although both Internet explorer and Firefox - which are the overwhelming majority of browsers used to view Urmston.net do have spell checkers. There are certain words however that are commonly misspelt so I have created a list of these words. When you preview your post to the forum, if you misspell any of these common words then they will be highlighted automatically. Ideally you would correct these before submitting the post but you can still submit the post without doing so. However, I would expect anyone posting directly to the live site to make the effort but once again, it's not compulsory - you can still submit your post. I reserve the right though not to authorise or remove any posts where clearly the poster doesn't want to make the effort.
The following is a list of rules governing the posting of items to Urmston.net; some of which are compulsory and some are only advisory.
R1: A post containing bad language, comments of an explicit sexual nature, or negative comments about race, religion, sexuality or minority groups is not allowed. This rule applies even if the comments are posted as a joke. I will cancel the account of any member that breaks this rule and reserve the right to report them to the police if necessary.
R2: A post that contains negative comments about an identifiable individual or company. Unless those comments have already been made public or if you have evidence to support your claims. You'll have to send me the evidence first though. I'll probably look at this at some point in the future as now that it's members only that can post, I think that there should be more freedom. I need to give it some thought though as I haven't decided yet whether the forum will eventually be closed to the public or if I just have a "Member's only" section of the forum.
R3: Text entered into a text box should always start with a capital letter unless it is an e-mail address. One of my biggest peeves is when text is entered into a text box in all lowercase. The only thing that should be in all lowercase as far as I'm concerned is an e-mail address. It winds me up because I don't want to see it on my website so I have to spend the time building in the validations to prevent people from entering text in lowercase rather than doing something more beneficial for the site.
R4: Your post should not be in all uppercase or all lowercase.
R5: A sentence should start with a capital letter and end with a full stop.
R6: I prefer it when information from another source is not copied into a post. Mainly because the text copied in is often so long that I doubt many people bother reading it. And it fills up the database unnecessarily which means I may have to pay for more database space. However, if you've received a reply that you wish to share then fair enough. This rule is mainly for those people who, when someone asks a question they go onto Google and copy and paste a long winded explanation into a post and post it. Just add a link to the web page, it's a lot easier all round.
R7: If you wish to add a topic to seek advice on where to obtain a product or service, you should enable your contact form before doing so; to allow other members to contact you directly with suggestions. I will not authorise any posts that promote a product or service so if you want to recommend a company you should contact the member who added the topic directly via their contact form. This does not apply to those members who can post directly to the live site. Your contact form can be enabled from your member homepage. I reserve the right to suspend (and have suspended) any members if I suspect their account has been created for no other reason than to promote a local business.
R8: The blatant promotion of a business is not allowed. Neither is the promotion of cottage industry (cash in hand) arrangements, where there is no legal remedy if something goes wrong. If you want to promote your legitimate business on Urmston.net then the best way to do this is to add your details to the Business Directory and ensure that you fill out your keywords.
There is an exception to this rule. Some members are able to post directly to the live site without their comments being moderated by the webmaster first. These are trusted members who regularly post to the forum and comply with the forum rules. As a privilege of being able to post live, these members have far more freedom in general, and I don't mind them recommending local businesses within reason. If you are a new member and you want to recommend a local business then you can always contact the person directly via their contact form. Instructions on how to do this are listed on this page. If you think you qualify as a trusted member then please let me know and I will review your account.
R9: I won't authorise any post that refers to vigilante or a similar action for obvious reasons.
R10: Any post where there is an excessive amount of names, town names etc, in lowercase. I don't mind changing some but when I get home from a busy day at work and someone has posted, "pete and john used to live on flixton road and sarah and bev used to live on chassen road" etc, I'll just delete it.
R11: A post that contains shortcuts for words such as "U" instead of "you" or other common text message shortcuts will not be authorised.
R12: Any post that contains lowercase "i" when referring to oneself probably will not be authorised as it's one of my pet peeves. No one in the UK has ever been taught to use lowercase "i" when referring to oneself; it is always an uppercase "I". I'll change the odd one but if the post contains "i" or "i'm" too many times then I probably won't bother authorising it.
R13: Anyone targeting an individual on the forum or an actual person runs the risk of not having their post authorised. Basically I tend to be more tolerant towards regular visitors to urmston.net than I am towards one-off posters, as long as no legal boundaries are crossed. It mainly depends on. Please note that some trusted members are able to post directly to the live forum - the post is live before I see it. Before you start accusing me of failing to moderate the posts (as some people do), please be aware that it's likely that I haven't even seen the post. However, I do review all posts, including those that are posted live. So most posts are moderated (before it gets posted) but posts from trusted members are reviewed (after they have gone live).
R14: A post that promotes any individual, business or website that conflicts with the interests of Urmston.net.
R15: Please do not add events to the forum, events should be added to the Events page. The exception to this rule are any non-profit events.
R16: I don't want phone numbers adding to the forum as a rule. You should use the member contact form as a means of contacting other members.
R17: I reserve the right to amend or remove parts of a post. I will endeavour to remove the offending bit rather than the entire post but I understand that some members might object to this. Thus, if I have done this to one of your posts and you're not happy with what I've done, if you contact me I'll remove the post. When I next update the members section I will add the option to choose whether you want me to modify your posts if deemed necessary to authorise them, or to leave them be and not authorise them.
R18: If you wish to follow a word with an ellipsis "..." then the forum style is three dots.
R19: I'll endeavour to remove any quirkiness from a post but eventually I'll stop authorising such posts. If the member posts live then they might lose their post live status. Examples are posts where the member adds a space before a comma or a full stop.
R20: Paragraph indents will be removed.