We have posted Forum Rules and Guidelines. How can we improve these rules?
Our Rules and Guidelines (found from the drop-down menu on the Forum tab) are here:
They currently read:
"Site Rules and Guidelines For Use of Adventist Online:
1. Be loving. Discuss issues with Christ-like love for your brothers and sisters here.
2. Be truthful. Do not mislead others. Speak words that you have a basis for. Do not speculate about suspicions.
3. No vulgarity or profanity in any form will be tolerated. Threats of any nature are strictly forbidden.
4. Don't call names, make personal attacks, or use negative stereotypes against other people or groups of people.
5. No belittling of individual people, their character, their beliefs, or their motives.
6. Only rebut issues, NOT the people who write them. Do not negatively characterize others' positions or beliefs with your own value judgment. Simply state how you think the belief is wrong and what you believe the true interpretation is - giving your basis for your belief.
7. Don't put words in other people's mouths that they have never said. (This does not, of course, prohibit quoting their words from previous posts.)
8. Don't post in the public forum personal differences, arguments, old grudges, hearsay, or private messages. No spamming discussion forum or chat rooms with off-topic, useless or repeated messages.
9. No spamming, soliciting money, commercial messages, or link farming. Commercial links / messages are only allowed on your own personal profile page. Members agree to not use any of the following ways to advertise, promote, or repeatedly link to any website: Comments, Chat, Videos, Photos, Groups, Blogs, Forum Discussions, Messages (both public and private), Member Name and Profile Picture. Members further agree to not use Adventist Online as a platform to invite Adventist Onlines' members to any other membership site.
10. Adventist Online is not a place to state your beliefs without accountability for their Biblical and/or Spirit of Prophecy basis. Do not stop the open exchange of ideas and the search for His truth by blocking or deleting comments to your blog entries, videos, etc.
11. Listen to, and cooperate with, moderators. Challenging the decisions/actions/inaction of moderator/s in the open forum is not acceptable behavior. Use the "Report an Issue" link located at the bottom of every page to address issues.
12. This is a site by Seventh-day Adventists for Seventh-day Adventists. We welcome all seekers of God's truth here. We believe that God will continue to reveal His truth to His people as time progresses. Thus we are constantly seeking a better understanding of God and His word. We welcome all that are doing the same. That said, if it becomes apparent that your purpose in being a member of this site is to promote a different agenda and/or sow discord among the brethren, your ability to interact with this site may be restricted.
13. Only one profile is permitted per person. Only one person is permitted to use each profile. Each profile represents one person (the account holder) and is not a separate unique entity. The profile is the representation of the person who established it. The person and their profile are one and the same.
14. If you ever feel justified for being negative or antagonistic toward another person... prayerfully see rule #1 and DON'T.
How can we improve these rules? What needs to be added or removed? Are any of these unfair? Do they discriminate against anyone? Thank you for your help, it is appreciated very much.
@ rush4hire. That is a good idea, including Bible verses. Reminds me of a comment, one newly baptized young man...feels very uncomfortable attending church meetings where not even 1 verse is quoted as basis for decisions taken.
Somehow it also points and reminds ALL of us re: accountability to God.
I think Eph 4;14-16 just about covers the whole list of rules.
Not misguide, speak in love and be in unity
14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
[admin note: the following replies are to a member who is no longer with us and whose comments are gone]
Very concerned with the enforcement, right Matthew? ;-)
Let me first say that the admins here are in NO way responsible for the conduct of individual members. We don't write for you. Nor can we force you to turn the other cheek when you feel slighted. There has never been an issue that we "are not doing or saying anything about it" simply because we don't do what an individual member wants us to do.
Each member here is an adult who is also a Christian. We expect you to act in a Christ-like manner. If members think that just because someone else acts inappropriately that it gives you license to do the same and more... then they are NOT acting like adults and definitely not acting like Christians. The administrators of any web site have nothing to do with that. It's all about personal responsibility... either we each have it... or we blame others.
Thank you for the support and the suggestions. God bless!
We prayerfully have deleted posts after prayer, consultation, more prayer, etc. We seek His wisdom in this process. We often err on the side of deleting less.
We firmly believe in God's ability to reveal His truth through our sinful human misrepresentations. So we rarely delete theological misinformation. The posts we delete almost always fall into the categories of 1) hate or 2) a members inability to handle a differing view and then personalizing the issue and talking about other members... labeling them, gossiping about them, etc, rather than addressing the issue at hand.
Members might not agree with all the choices we have made (and are free to write to us more about them), but those are the choices we prayerfully make on a daily basis. It is inappropriate for members to rebuke the admins for their action/inaction. It is always appropriate for members to express their concerns and views to us... just as long as they follow the same rules we have laid out here. :-)