Rules of Engagement
All online communities follow certain guidelines of civility to make it fun and worthwhile for everybody. The iCitizenForum guidelines apply to all sections of the site.
The number one guideline is to offer what you have to say politely. From your experience you know that rude shouting matches just make people angry and upset, so no one learns anything. Why bother? Because people in our community come from diverse backgrounds, you will probably find something with which you don't agree, and that's fine — so long as you disagree politely.
To get started, please spend some time reading current and past discussions to be sure you understand what the topic is and where the discussion is. That way you won't waste time rehashing topics already discussed. When you are up to speed, please jump in.
Don't try to be an expert unless you really are, and even then it might be better to let others decide that for themselves. Posting misleading or incorrect information slows down the conversation and is confusing. Even with the best intentions, however, mistakes happen, so re-read "number one guideline" above. No personal attacks, no calling names, no questioning anyone's intelligence.
In any discussion, don't change the subject. If you want to discuss something else, that's fine, but start a new discussion and see how many people are interested.
Remember that the Internet is a giant post card, so anything you say about yourself can be read by anybody anywhere. It's a good idea to keep your personal information personal.
We screen postings and we will remove or edit those that are in violation of good standards or our own guidelines. These include, but are not limited to, defamatory or libelous attacks, infringement of copyright, attempts to impersonate another, any obscene or sexual content, commercial messages, or illegal behavior.
If you won't play by the rules, we will suspend your account temporarily. If you still won't play by the rules, we will make the suspension permanent. Please do not make us do that.