This Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) is intended to help create an atmosphere in which freedom of speech is balanced by self-discipline and a mature attitude to discussion. We encourage people to join these discussions and it would therefore be very surprising if exchanges did not occasionally become a little heated! For this reason, we have compiled this policy for those who are new to the etiquette of online discussion.
Site Administrators and Moderators are available to help you to get the most out of participating in online discussions and to ensure that the rules are observed. Although the Administrators and Moderators cannot take responsibility for monitoring every message that is sent to the web site, we must reserve the right to remove items submitted from anyone who ignores these rules. If a post is removed, it does not explicitly warrant a reason from the Moderators. Repeatedly ignoring the rules will result in a ban, either temporary or permanent, from the discussion forum.
Before posting a message, you should ensure to the best of your ability that the information it contains is accurate, truthful and appropriate.
By virtue of your participation in this discussion forum, you are deemed to have agreed to abide by the rules.
- Personal Identification
All messages sent to a discussion will require your username and password, chosen at time of registration. Do not represent yourself as another person. Multiple memberships by the same person are not permitted and action may be taken (see Reporting, warnings and banning).
- Use of Language
Messages - either posted to the public forum or sent privately via the Union forum facilities - should not be malicious, threatening or designed to offend. In particular, the use of swearwords or undue bad language is discouraged. By participating in any discussion, you undertake to indemnify the site owner, Administrators and appointed Moderators against any liability arising from any obscene, offensive, seditious, blasphemous or other actionable statement published by you on this site and against all damages, losses, claims and costs (including, without limitation, fines and expenses arising out of or incurred in conducting or defending any proceedings) arising from any such actionable statements.
- Conduct of Discussion
Your message should be within the scope of the subject under discussion so please try to keep to the topic. If you make a contribution that is inappropriate to the subject under discussion, an Administrator or Moderator can move your message to a separate discussion topic.
Reference should not be made to the personality of other participants in a discussion nor should attacks be made on an individual's character unless the person concerned has already chosen to bring his or her personality into the issue under discussion.
One to one arguments, disagreements and disputes of a personal nature must be conducted through private Email and not through public discussion.
You should remember that you are legally responsible for what you write. By participating in a discussion, you undertake to indemnify the site owner, Administrators and appointed Moderators against any liability arising from any breach of confidentiality, copyright or other intellectual property right published by you on this site and against all damages, losses, claims and costs (including, without limitation, all expenses incurred in conducting or defending any proceedings) arising from any such publication. You must not make statements that are libellous, slanderous, obscene, seek to incite racial hatred or otherwise break the laws of the United Kingdom. International users must ensure that they obey their own regional laws in addition to UK laws.
- New member restrictions
New forum members are automatically placed into an introductory user group which requires posts to be approved by a moderator or admininstrator. This is a requirement of all new members. Once five posts have been approved, the member will automatically be promoted to a normal account.
During this period, if a post is approved or rejected you may receive a notification. If the notification is a rejection, you may also receive an explanation of why the post was rejected, allowing you to make any corrections and resubmit.
Our moderation team makes every effort to review queued submissions as soon as possible, but submissions made to any of the games threads during the probationary period may be rejected due to the fact that the games can be fast-paced and another member may have posted while the submission is waiting for rejection/approval.
- Reporting, warnings and banning
If a Union forum user considers a posting or private message to be in contravention of any of these rules, or has a complaint to make of any nature concerning the content or wording, they have the ability to report it. This can be done by clicking the icon containing an exclamation mark (next to the "quote" button) at the top of the post in question. Private messages should be copied and pasted into a new private message to an Admin (Maxpower or Rainbow). Moderators and Admins will review any reported posts and, after discussion, will take appropriate action. Private messages will be discussed between Admins only (unless they deem it necessary to include the Moderators in discussions) in order to respect privacy. Actions available to the Admins and Moderators are immediate editing of the post, a private (informal) warning, a request for the member to edit their post, a formal warning or a ban. Should the report be considered a gross breach of the rules, The Union staff reserve the right to impose an immediate ban.
A forum user who receives a warning may be placed on a temporary probation. The effect of being on a probation period is each post will require Admin or Moderator approval, and there is a daily allowance of posts allowed. The probation will be lifted at such a time as the Moderator Team deem it appropriate.
A forum user who receives a third warning will be issued with an automatic ban for 30 days. On return after expiry of that ban, if that user receives a further warning they will be permanently banned. Public discussion on the forum concerning warnings and/or bans will not be permitted and there is no appeal process.
After a member is banned, any attempts to rejoin the Union forum using a different user name will also be banned without notice. Admins and Moderators also have the ability to delete all posts by a banned forum user.
Offers or requests concerning trading or sale of unofficial live recordings is not permitted. This includes recording taken in any format and at any time without the artist's explicit permission.
Similarly, unauthorised copies of official recordings offered for trading or sale is strictly prohibited and any member who is approached via this forum (by Private Message or Email) with an offer of such trading or sale should report it to an Admin or a Moderator. Links to sites offering unofficial live recordings or unauthorised copies of official recordings (or the facility to find them) is also not permitted and will be removed at the Admin and/or Moderator's discretion.
- Private Email
If a person has sent you a private Email you may not forward it to a public discussion forum without the prior consent of the person who sent it. This does not prevent you forwarding private Email to an Admin or Moderator should you consider this appropriate. Likewise, Admins or Moderators may need to forward your message to other members of the team when deemed appropriate, however this will still be kept from the public forum in these matters (see Reporting, warnings and banning).
- Advertising and Research
No commercial advertising is allowed except where it is for an event, publication or similar item that has direct relevance to the subject of discussion.
Information about locating and sharing knowledge and expertise is welcomed, but within the specific discussion topic provided.
Any introductory member profiles or posts that are deemed to be solely for the purposes of advertising or spam will automatically be deactivated with a complete ban. There will be no notifications in these situations.
- Complaints about a Breach of these Rules
Complaints about a breach of these rules should be made using the Message Reporting System or if appropriate, by private Email to the Site Admins. The Site Admins will take timely and appropriate action with regard to the complaint.
If necessary, I will remove a post or thread or ask one of the Admins/Moderators to delete it. I have the final say in this matter.
Fish and the Union team.