The Taverns' Backroom is home to a multiple of folk from all walks of life, bringing forth a great diversity in viewpoints which are often denied for your leisure at the nearest local.
From Norwegian Champagne Socialists, American Deep-South, British Aristocracy, Mile-High Doctors, History Professors, Enterprising Dutch Freethinkers, Alpine Ski-Instructors, University Students, Asian Marketeers and devout Presbyterians. There is a very broad stroke of global society which contribute together on a great many topics in civil discussions in a large number of current and controversial subjects, a melting pot which can produce some of the most interesting and rewarding conservations and experiences upon the forum.
There are always subjects which can cause people to get a little heated underneath the collar, however these typically are resolved with some wardrobe adjustment, a brisk walk and a glass refill, moving on in sharing in other new linguistic explorations.
Rules of Engagement
If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers, it shews he is a citizen of the world.
Francis Bacon 1561-1626
The Backroom is the forum for discussions about every conceivable topic - but especially those subjects that your mother warned you about bringing up at dinner - politics and religion. Debate and passion are the lifeblood of this place - but at its heart is respect for all, opponents and friends alike.
All patrons should be familiar with the Org FAQ.
Nothing written here over-rides the rules laid out there, but there are some special circumstances in this place which bear further explanation. Because of the potentially febrile nature of the Backroom, we are less tolerant of bad language and provocative statements than many other forums.
There are two moderators for this forum: Beskar, and Hooahguy.
Please feel free to seek guidance on any proposed post or issue by Private Message.
Starting a Thread
Contributions on all topics are welcomed, however the Backroom is the place for serious conversational discussions and not for casual run of the mill chitchat and forum games.
Title: The thread title should be descriptive and help readers to understand the subject being proposed for discussion.
Body: The starting post itself should be considered and offer an opinion for patrons to debate. One liners, or just a link are not acceptable. If possible, please reference to a news article or information site which would help patrons understand your views and subject matter of the topic, please include these as well.
Avoid Duplication:Make sure you have looked through at least the first page of threads to ensure that you are not repeating a subject that is currently being discussed. Going back over old and familiar subjects is perfectly acceptable. Interesting tangents from a current discussion are also permitted. Concurrent proliferation of threads on the same subject is not, and will get threads closed or merged.
Attribution: Please respect copyright. All external sources should be given due attribution and a link provided to the original source. An article should not be posted in its entirety, but selections placed in indents, ex or spoiler tags and linked. Presenting original sources as your own is frowned on and you will be found out.
The Nature of the Inter-tubes
All patrons should understand that this is a forum with an international membership. What might seem innocuous to you might be seen as provocative and even insulting to others. This is especially true of humour. Without the clues provided by body language and facial expressions, what seems funny as you write it may not translate across the text quite so well. This is why we have such a comprehensive range of smileys. Please use them to support the message you wish to get across. English is the standard posting language, which enables the moderators to understand what is going on.
Common Misconception of the Backroom; The Apocalypse
Report Post Button
If you find a post objectionable, please use the Report Post button (located at the left hand side and looking like a triangular warning sign) rather than taking up cudgels yourself. By getting angry or abusive, you are likely to get yourself a warning point, which is a bit daft, really, isn't it? Reporting a post highlights it to the staff. You may not get a communication directly, but rest assured the post will have been looked at. You won't know what sanction may have been applied - unless your bestest friend in the whole world suddenly disappears from view for three days. I sure do miss that Beskar.
In the Backroom, we don't have time for the niceties of sending PMs to patrons asking them to edit their own posts to remove mistakes. This forum is one of the busiest in the Org, and waiting for several hours for a patron to log back in might allow a wildfire to flourish. Therefore you will see moderators editing posts quickly without notifying you in most cases. A reason for the edit will normally be given at the bottom of the post. If you restore the previous version, you had better have a very good reason as moderators do not edit posts with reckless abandon. If you feel hard done by, please PM the moderator first and agree what is best.
The one thing that does communicate over any borders is respect. Treat others well and they will respect your views, even if they don't agree. Personal attacks, whether outright or implied, will be edited and/or punished. Calling people stupid is not permitted. They may well have written the most unmitigated rubbish in your opinion, but it is their view. Challenge it, demonstrate its error or even shake your head in frustration, but do not belittle the poster.
All forms of bad language and profanity are prohibited in the Backroom. This hard line is because even the gentlest of curses can tip a ferocious discussion over into bad feeling and anger - usually leading to warnings all round and a closed thread. There's no need for adults to swear. If you feel you must (usually for emphasis) then all letters of the word must be asterisked out. This does not mean a starting letter plus asterisks to indicate what you really meant. Nor does it mean the "innocent" half of the word left in with a few asterisks. It means all. A Backroom tradition has grown up to use the smiley instead of a prohibited word - this is fine, and everyone will understand.
The odd instance of mild swearing will usually be edited out. If you repeat the behaviour often, you will get a warning. Foul language such as f-bombs and racial slurs will likely get you a infraction point straight away.
Trolling is the art of provoking angry reactions. Some trolls are subtle, others show all the delicacy of an air-raid on an orphanage. This is an area of engagement that stretches the moderators, as one person's opinion may well look like a troll to their opponent. We tend to look at the poster and their track record, and punish accordingly. Yes, life is unfair. Your best remedy is not to get a reputation as a troll.
The wisdom of the ancients is best embraced when being provoked: Don't feed the trolls.
Nation and Religion Bashing
This occupation, a variant of trolling behaviour, deserves special mention. It is perfectly acceptable to take issue with a government or religious grouping, but we frown upon generalised insults.
Acceptable: "I can't stand the Lilliputian government's excessive use of hemp rope against innocents"
Unacceptable: " Lilliputians are small-minded pygmies"
Just remember that Respect thing we talked about. Would you like what you wrote said about your own nationality?
Religion is another powder keg. Please remember that we have patrons of all religions and none here, and that their beliefs are sincerely held. They are also very often very important to a person's self-image - literally "sacred" - and insults aimed at fellow believers (and unbelievers) provoke hurt and upset. There's nothing wrong with using historical and factual data to make a point, but with care please.
Rest in Peace
When a person of note dies, it is the Backroom tradition that we do not dissect their legacy until the funeral has taken place. Until that time, only respectful posts marking their passing will be allowed.
Photographs or videos of death and dismemberment are not permitted either. No matter how heinous the crime a person has committed, their death is not something to be paraded on this forum.
The Backroom sees a great deal of passion, friction and tub-thumping. What it does not see are flame wars. Anger, beastliness and an inability to form coherent sentences are the sparks that lead to wildfires, and there are those who throw petrol. Arsonists are heavily punished here, and rising smoke often leads to a thread closure. Sometimes this is temporary, and the moderator will announce when you can expect a resumption of discussion. Sometimes a thread is closed "pending staff discussion" which is self-explanatory. Sometimes a thread is sent to bed with no supper in case anyone sees it and invites its rage to another place.
Don't hotlink pictures (that is, link directly to the site where a picture resides). This steals bandwidth and gets the Org in trouble. Copy the picture to your own host site or a public domain hosting site (imgur.com photobucket.com imageshack.us) and use the [IMG] tags to put it into your post. Hotlinked pictures will be removed summarily.
Just don't. "In B4 teh lock" and its kin will receive infraction points.
The True face of the Frontroom Backroom; Kingdom of Peace and Love
Warnings and Infractions
Warning: Members can get very upset over receiving a Warning, but you should be aware that it is merely a formal Private Message from a moderator, advising you that your behaviour is crossing the line. It carries no penalty points, but is recorded so that other moderators can see that the problem has been addressed.
Infractions: For outright breaches of the rules, foul language, or persistent bad behaviour, a patron may be issued with an Infraction. Usually, this will carry a penalty point - but it is possible for a more severe penalty to be imposed. If you accumulate three points concurrently, you will face a temporary ban for 72 hours. Points take 30 days each to expire, so if you are near your limit, a single point will get you a ban each time.
You should be reassured that all infractions are reviewed, and the most serious are considered by all the Backroom staff. Of course, it goes without saying that Backroom moderators, by their very nature, are Completely and Utterly Infallible, but very occasionally we find ourselves to be slightly less Infallible than ideal, and in these cases our Magnanimity and Mercy allows us to rescind a penalty point (as long as no-one points and laughs).
Infractions are never discussed openly unless the member concerned publicises what happened themselves. By all means contact the moderator by PM if you have a concern, and feel free to copy your PM to the rest of the Backroom staff.
Any subject is open for discussion in the Backroom, but we ask that you be mindful of the Org rules regarding ethnicity and sexuality.
We hope you enjoy your time here.