Posting Etiquette

Aaron101

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Does your forum enforce or prefer posting etiquette, such as using proper grammar and spelling at the least?

For me, one thing that shouts possible spam is run-on sentences and poor spelling.
 

Shawn Gossman

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For me, one thing that shouts possible spam is run-on sentences and poor spelling.
5 years ago, I would had agreed.

Now, not to much.

At this very moment, I'm typing out this reply on my desktop with a full keyboard. It is easy for me to type and correct my grammar issues (like when I just misspelled grammar with an er instead of an ar, lol).

If I reply on my phone, different story. Phones have evolved away from the buttoned-keyboard, my stupid clumsy thumbs have not, lol.

My phone also likes to quickly change what I typed to something horrendously random as well. Most of the time, I don't even realize the changes.

So, personally-no; I don't really worry too much about spelling and grammar. I watch the content they are posting. I can usually detect spam that way.
 

LeadCrow

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People are encouraged to communicate the way theyre confortable doing within their individual limitations. Many are not english natives and use applications for typing, dictation or translation that inadequately convey their user's message as intended but do reasonably enough.

So no enforcement other than basic netiquette (respectful language not emotionally loaded against other members). MSNspeak and autocorrected messages posted from smartphones with minuscule displays and even much smaller touch keyboards are not a reason to intervene in ways a user could consider provocative and insinuating in public theyre uneducated buffoons.
 

Aaron101

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Great input and responses! :)

I stand corrected! Thanks for chiming in. :)
 

FTL

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My forum rules do specify that members should try to post with decent spelling, grammar and paragraphs. One can't enforce this too strictly though as there are many reasons why someone may not be so good at it such as dyslexia, English not a native language, smartphone use etc. Incidentally, I've written this on my iPhone. :)

General behaviour is much more important however and they're pretty detailed on dos and don'ts. Check them out if you'd like to see.

Spotting spam is obvious though from their garbage content. The content and user get nuked from orbit lol.
 
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Pete

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The roleplay forum scene is nuts about their rules.

Decent grammar/spelling is considered a baseline without being spelled out, while plenty of sites have a minimum word count per post, and often in the prose there is a preference/somewhat expectation that you will bold/otherwise style the dialogue separately to the rest of the text. Preference varies here, some prefer bold, others pick a colour that suits their character‘s muse, irrespective of what that does for readability.

And that’s before we start talking about the penchant for activity checks - as in, there will be a regular check to make sure you’re posting above a certain level per week/per month if you want to stay on the site and keep your avatar (who will usually be a picture of a famous person that represents your character; more so if you are posting on a site based on movies or similar and you happen to be playing a canon character)

Pretty weird out there really.
 

Pete

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I’d reflect it slightly differently.

1. Admin is god.
2. Don’t be an ass lest admin smites you.
3. See 1.

It’s your house, your rules. You don’t need to explain every rule in detail because you only get the rules lawyers who go “but you didn‘t say <specific exception> wasn’t covered” and just because it’s not written down doesn’t mean it’s not a rule.

Some people seem to lack a sense of propriety in their behaviour.
 

LeadCrow

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It’s your house, your rules.
Nobody is obligated to hang there for sure, but this isnt the positive you may assume. Losing the support and goodwill of the community could have it move as one man to a different or new hangout - when they do, the place stops mattering.
This way they get rid of hostile members of the community and any community rules or enforcement style they reject that you refused to ditch.
 

Pete

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I didn't say it was a positive or a negative, it's simply a fact of life.

One of the problems I tend to see - and have made myself - is that not enforcing some baseline standards can actually lead to an overall detriment when people work out that the admin is a pushover and start taking liberties.
 

FTL

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One of the problems I tend to see - and have made myself - is that not enforcing some baseline standards can actually lead to an overall detriment when people work out that the admin is a pushover and start taking liberties.
I'm pretty easygoing and friendly, so sometimes people see that as a weakness and start misbehaving. Then they learn to their cost that they badly misjudged me, which I find rather satisfying. ;)
 

truthingtotruth

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Firstly, I've seen many forums that have auto correction of bad spelling, and the software here does that.

The grammar stuff is a bit tougher and one reason is it seems that more folks on the Net these days are having a bit more trouble with basic grammar. I don't mean the more complicated cases where grammar is not easy. Basic grammar seems a bit weaker these days. I wouldn't care to head into the territory as to why that might be, AND I could be way wrong.

Maybe if a community citizen is way off the mark way too often then a PM from a Mod or Admin could help matters. Or might there be a software program that could target a certain member's posts to do corrections of grammar.

Another area of written communications that could be trouble is that these days a whole bunch of new style word shortening techniques are evolving and I think that relates to character count limits some sites have. And it seems more abbreviations are used and sometimes we might not know what an abbreviation is abbreviating.

Anyway, getting folks to use good grammar is a tough one.
 

Pete

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I haven‘t seen XF do autocorrection, but my work MacBook and my iPad are very enthusiastic about fixing my typos for me, including when they’re not typos but words they’ve misunderstood!

The new styles of word shortening upset me on some base level because I’m something of a linguistic conservative (basically: words have meanings, please don’t redefine them out of your convenience!), but they’re a logical evolution of device culture. The mobile phone generation of the late 1990s/early 2000s discovered the convenience of text messages, with the inherent shortness attached therein, so abbreviations were largely necessary rather than purely out of convenience. This coincided with the birth of Twitter (originally twttr) for much the same reason - gotta fit it all in a single message - but brought the habitual shortening to a new audience.

After that you’re just looking at the simple question of ergonomics: typing a lot on a small device is clunky and inefficient - and since there are already common/socially acceptable standards for contractions and abbreviations, might as well use them. (This isn’t to say you can’t write longer material on a phone, but it’s not conducive to it.)

This is also a key factor in the decline of long-form posting content on forums - if a suitably large population of people are expecting to use short form content because their devices make it less convenient to write long form content, that’s what you’ll see as the dominant trend, and platforms that thrive best on that style of content (fewer words, often more media) will thrive even putting aside the sociological changes (e.g. the curation of one’s personal life to what is posted on social media to “live your best life”)
 

mysiteguy

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It’s your house, your rules. You don’t need to explain every rule in detail because you only get the rules lawyers who go “but you didn‘t say <specific exception> wasn’t covered” and just because it’s not written down doesn’t mean it’s not a rule.
Classic "less is more".
 

Pete

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Yup but you’d be surprised how often I see super detailed rules, *and* instances of rules-lawyering against it.
 

mysiteguy

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Yup but you’d be surprised how often I see super detailed rules, *and* instances of rules-lawyering against it.

Last rule could be:
"Don't argue with staff about the rules or having your posts moderated. This isn't a negotiating table."
 

Pete

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You’d think, but alas.

Then again the places I see this have super arbitrary rules about things like choices of avatar, so mileage varies.
 

FTL

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Yup but you’d be surprised how often I see super detailed rules, *and* instances of rules-lawyering against it.
I'm a super detailer and would love some bright spark try to find a hole in my rules. All I then have to do is point to the catch-all statement and they're snookered. :LOL:
 

truthingtotruth

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I apologize to a very large segment of our good Earth's folks because in my post (#12 above) I failed to extend some thoughts to a very, very important group --- those that are using English as a second or third language. Yes, some in that group have excellent grammar and spelling skills, but there are many who may have trouble and they most certainly shouldn't be given any sort of hard time for not being so great with some grammar or spelling. An admin or mod can figure that one out rather easily by the IP address, if they have any concerns in such a matter --- many don't, for good reason. And there are a few folks that don't have access to the IP address that can recognize that it is a Net Citizen using English as a second language, if there is some reason to be in any way concerned about poor grammar usage or spelling.

That's way too long of a paragraph up there on that topic, but it was quite impolite of me not to add some thoughts about that particular group. Truth is, we should feel very lucky if somebody is posting in English and it is not their native language. It would indicate your forum has content that extends beyond the borders of the native English speaking folks and that could very well indicate you're doing something very right.

Okay, enough from a yakitiyak old man trying to correct an oversight.

By the way, isn't posting etiquette and rules about what you can or cannot post two more-or-less separate topics. I mean, I see above some stuff about my house, my rules sort of thinking, but how does that fit with somebody who is simply making too many errors or going after other members too harshly or --- well, for example; if your rules state no profanity, then that's that. No etiquette style trouble there, right? You don't use profanity and that's it. Unless there is some question about what vocabulary is considered profanity.

I don't know, just seems that house rules and etiquette are sort of different topics. I'm probably wrong.

And that point about folks being brief with their posts, which I am certainly not, --- well, that isn't an area (I don't much care for that Facebook style) --- it isn't an area of Net communications I have much experience with. But it does open my mind to the question of whether it is a good thing for folks to develop the habit of not going into details when posting. We can't get a feel for what sort of human they are if they just post Yes/No/Maybe type responses to questions. I also wonder if over the long term that starts to cause people to not actually know how to express deep thoughts and any possibility they start to not even think in deep ways --- you know, they become shallow. That isn't so good, is it? Of course, they also don't like folks like me who try to get deep into the heart of a given situation. I mean, is it overall good for humans to be leaning in that direction? Shallow waters are not so good for a big ship, right?

I don't know, more yakitiyak from an old fart. Sorry.
 

mysiteguy

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I apologize to a very large segment of our good Earth's folks because in my post (#12 above) I failed to extend some thoughts to a very, very important group --- those that are using English as a second or third language. Yes, some in that group have excellent grammar and spelling skills, but there are many who may have trouble and they most certainly shouldn't be given any sort of hard time for not being so great with some grammar or spelling. An admin or mod can figure that one out rather easily by the IP address, if they have any concerns in such a matter --- many don't, for good reason. And there are a few folks that don't have access to the IP address that can recognize that it is a Net Citizen using English as a second language, if there is some reason to be in any way concerned about poor grammar usage or spelling.

That's way too long of a paragraph up there on that topic, but it was quite impolite of me not to add some thoughts about that particular group. Truth is, we should feel very lucky if somebody is posting in English and it is not their native language. It would indicate your forum has content that extends beyond the borders of the native English speaking folks and that could very well indicate you're doing something very right.

Okay, enough from a yakitiyak old man trying to correct an oversight.

By the way, isn't posting etiquette and rules about what you can or cannot post two more-or-less separate topics. I mean, I see above some stuff about my house, my rules sort of thinking, but how does that fit with somebody who is simply making too many errors or going after other members too harshly or --- well, for example; if your rules state no profanity, then that's that. No etiquette style trouble there, right? You don't use profanity and that's it. Unless there is some question about what vocabulary is considered profanity.

I don't know, just seems that house rules and etiquette are sort of different topics. I'm probably wrong.

And that point about folks being brief with their posts, which I am certainly not, --- well, that isn't an area (I don't much care for that Facebook style) --- it isn't an area of Net communications I have much experience with. But it does open my mind to the question of whether it is a good thing for folks to develop the habit of not going into details when posting. We can't get a feel for what sort of human they are if they just post Yes/No/Maybe type responses to questions. I also wonder if over the long term that starts to cause people to not actually know how to express deep thoughts and any possibility they start to not even think in deep ways --- you know, they become shallow. That isn't so good, is it? Of course, they also don't like folks like me who try to get deep into the heart of a given situation. I mean, is it overall good for humans to be leaning in that direction? Shallow waters are not so good for a big ship, right?

I don't know, more yakitiyak from an old fart. Sorry.

TLDR. Less is more.
 
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