What are the guidelines for posting on the MRH site?
Short answer: Generally speaking, play nice and don't be vulgar. Promotional or for sale posts have strict guidelines since we're advertiser funded - this funding approach allows MRH to maintain a high standard of quality (read: pay staff and authors), yet remain forever free to modelers. Click here to read the guidelines for promotional posts.
To report an offending post, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and bring it to the attention of our moderators.
Long answer: The MRH forums and blogs help build a strong community of modelers by fostering discussion and sharing information. Messages posted by subscribers are solely the opinion and responsibility of the person posting the message. All subscribers posting to the MRH site must be familiar with these posting guidelines.
Posting to the forums or blogs constitutes your agreement to the terms outlined in these guidelines.
Please treat all Community Leaders and their decisions with respect. As volunteers helping users and moderating the MRH site, they deserve your courtesy as much as we feel you deserve theirs.
While we’re the first to admit we’re not perfect, we strive to be impartial and conduct ourselves in the fairest manner possible for all. In order to provide you with a safe and positive experience on our site, some moderation actions taken by our Community Leaders may not be explicitly covered under these guidelines if we feel certain posts are not in the best interest of our community.
Violation of these guidelines is grounds for immediate post removal, forum sanction and/or suspension of your MRH subscriber account.
Please note: The moderators of the MRH site reserve the right to remove any post we deem as inappropriate without warning.
If at any time you feel a Community Leader, or another user treats you unfairly or inappropriately, please send an email to email@example.com.
Prohibited activities on the MRH site include:
MRH prohibits the posting of advertising links, images, or content for the purpose of promotion or selling outside of the MRH Advertiser forum or the Hobby event notices forum. Hijacking or creating a new thread for the purpose of solicitation, selling, or advertising of content/posts may also be interpreted as a solicitation and are prohibited outside of their relevant forums.
Only MRH advertisers or MRH staff are allowed to post in the MRH Advertiser forum. Vendors who are not MRH advertisers must become an advertiser first to be allowed to post in the MRH Advertiser forum.
Existing Model Railroad Hobbyist advertisers are permitted (and even encouraged) to promote their products via the MRH Advertiser forum. Promotional posts by MRH advertisers outside of this forum will be moved to this forum so they are clearly identified as promotional posts that are sanctioned on the MRH site.
Hobby event coordinators may freely post notices of their hobby events on Hobby event notices forum. Only non-profit organizations hosting events may post in this forum - all other event organizations must purchase advertising and post in the MRH Advertiser forum. For the magazine, we offer ads to non-profits at a 50% discount of our regular rates.
For sale or classified ads are not permitted on the MRH website unless you have received express permission in advance to make such a post. (There are a lot better places to sell personal hobby items if you do want to do a personal classified ad -- ebay, and various "yard sale" forums on Yahoo, to name a few.)
The general rule is if money is changing hands, then it's advertising and not free on the MRH website.
The solicitation or advertisement of web content, goods, services, or other information not published on the MRH site or in the MRH magazine is considered “spam” and not allowed.
Flaming, Trolling & Ranting
Posting intentionally hostile or insulting messages meant to incite arguments, a.k.a. “flame wars” is not considered a positive contribution to the MRH community and will be removed. We do not discourage heated debates, but as the line between passionate discussion and “trolling/flaming” is often subjective - determining what is and is not acceptable will be determined solely by our moderators (Community Leaders and Staff).
Comment on content, not on the contributor. Personal attacks do not help make a point; they only hurt the community and deter users from helping to create a good body of knowledge in a discussion. Derogatory comments about other contributors may be removed by a moderator. Repeated or egregious personal attacks may lead to blocks.
Going on "rants" where you continue to post a constant negative stream of posts and won't let up is also not welcomed. Make your point and then move on, change the subject, and so on. We want to keep our forum a friendly place and posters with an axe to grind or on a "holy war" drive people away and make people avoid the MRH website. Always remember this is a hobby people do for fun, it's not the Spanish Inquisition.
Whether provoked by another member or from other reasons, aggressive retaliatory responses to trolling/flaming are not excusable acts under any circumstances. If another member of our site is personally attacking you, please report it via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. DO NOT RETALIATE or respond aggressively to an abusive comment.
Offensive remarks made in retaliation to an abusive post are likewise subject to removal/sanctions.
Profanity & Obscenity
We prohibit the posting of material (graphics, text, links, and other references) containing profanity, vulgarity (including potty humor*), hate speech, threats of violence, obscenity, or pornographic/adult material. Using a vulgar, profane, or otherwise offensive username is also prohibited. While we encourage free expression, we also expect our members to be respectful of the sensibilities of other users. The determination as to what is and is not considered acceptable posting on our forums is totally at the discretion of the moderators.
*Potty humor: Toilet humor, or scatological humor (a preoccupation with obscenity, especially that dealing with excrement or excretory functions), is a type of off-color humor dealing with defecation, urination, flatulence, vomiting and other bodily functions. This genre also sees substantial crossover with sexual humor, such as penis jokes and fanny jokes. Potty humor posts push the limits of most people's sensibilities and will be removed.
Discussing or reposting of deleted, locked posts or banned members
Respect the decisions of our moderators and staff. If a topic is locked or deleted or a user has been banned, discussion of these subjects will not be allowed to continue. Comments, questions or concerns on such actions within the forums can be submitted to the site moderators or staff by sending an email to email@example.com.
DO NOT post such comments on the MRH web site.
Posting contact information about another individual
Posting personal contact information on MRH subscribers Community leaders, MRH staff, and non-subscribers is not permitted, regardless of the source of that information. If you want to pass on contact information to others please post it via private email offline.
Using multiple accounts for fraudulent or deceptive behavior
While there is nothing wrong with having multiple aliases on our site, we prohibit using such aliases to deceive other users or moderators, to “bump” or promote a topic in a thread, or for any other reason we consider a misuse of our site.
Contacting other members regarding business by unauthorized methods
Searching for and making use of contact information the person did not otherwise willingly provide themselves is a violation of these guidelines and may result in disciplinary action.
Posting copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright owner
To report copyright infringement or inappropriate content to our administrators, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and bring it to the attention of our moderators.
Malicious or Disruptive Code
False Representation and Endorsements
Posting with the intent to impersonate MRH Staff or another member through the use of similar IDs or any other method or device is prohibited. Postings which falsely suggest that MRH Staff or Community Leaders have in any way approved of, or are involved in the promotion of given content is prohibited.
Data Mining/Harvesting & Employing Bots
Using the MRH site as a means to acquire private information from other community members through any methods is prohibited.
Posts promoting or encouraging activities that violate these posting guidelines is also prohibited.
MRH may block an account from posting without removing the subscriber from the site. MRH may block a subscriber from the site who has been previously warned of policy violations, though we reserve the right to remove a subscriber immediately depending on the violation.
Sanctions/blocking may range from 1 day to indefinite. A block or suspension of one ID applies to all IDs of that member and may, at our discretion, apply to members of the same household.
The use of false registration information or creating multiple accounts for use on the MRH site for the purpose of disruption or to avoid detection may result in permanent deletiion of all associated registrations, a permanent blocking of your IP address or us reporting you to your ISP as a spammer.
Content Ownership and Privacy
The content you post on the MRH website is jointly owned by you and by MRH. This means if MRH wants to take a post down for any reason, we can. It also means if you want to take your posts down for any reason, you can (although we encourage you to discuss it with us first so you don't leave trashed threads or have modelers wondering where their important dialog with you went).
MRH may take excerpts from what you post and publish them in our magazine from time to time, and give you credit. If we want to publish substantial portions of what you have posted, especially photos, then we will contact you and get permission as well as discussing payment terms. MRH defines what constitutes "substantial".
Photos you post on our website may contain EXIF metadata that includes some personal information about you as well as your location. If this concerns you, here is what we can and cannot do with EXIF data in photos, and how you can control what EXIF data, if any, gets in photos.
1. We cannot legally strip EXIF data from photos posted on our website because the FBI considers a third party deliberately stripping EXIF data from photos to be a copyright infringement and a possible prison offense. Altering metadata on photos we don't own is illegal. We do not make EXIF data in photos posted on our website directly available in any way through our website software, but a tech-savvy person can display EXIF data in photos you post.
2. Unless your camera is GPS enabled, your photos will not have location information. For cameras that are GPS enabled (cell phones and some feature-laden newer cameras), if you are concerned about location data in your photos being a privacy violation, then turn this feature off.
3. Photoshop has the ability to remove EXIF data from photos. Just Google "Photoshop remove EXIF". Again, if you don't want this data in the photos you post, then it is your responsibility to remove it.
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