Forum Etiquette & Moderation
Forum Etiquette & Moderation Policy
Moderation of the Site is designed to facilitate keeping you (“user”, “your”, “yourself”), Site administrators, and third-parties free from malicious, inflammatory and illegal materials.
The Site is moderated by a professional global moderation team from Bang the Table Canada Ltd. (“we,” “our”, “moderator”, “moderation team”) in collaboration with The Regional Municipality of Waterloo, The Corporation of the City of Cambridge, The Corporation of the City of Kitchener and The Corporation of the City of Waterloo.
All public facing contributions - that is, contributions that can be seen by other Site users - and usernames submitted to this Site are moderated in accordance with the moderation rules set out below.
Contributions and user names that do not adhere to the moderation rules will be removed and you will be notified of this by email.
Repeated, flagrant disregard for the moderation rules may result in the imposition of sanctions also listed below.
The Site is subject to the following moderation rules:
Never post personal information about another user. This includes identifying any other user by their real name if they have not already done so, or providing personal contact information.
Never identify a staff member of the consulting organization or any other organization by name.
Do not defame anyone or any organization. A comment is defamatory if it lowers or harms the reputation of a person or organization. Do not insult any other user. Do not accuse anyone of wrongdoing or incompetence on the Site.
Do not post anything that could be considered intolerant of a person's race, culture, appearance, gender, sexual preference, religion or age.
Do not be obscene and/or use foul language. Do not disguise swear words by deliberately misspelling them.
Do not personally insult or harass other users. Always focus on the logic of the argument rather than the other users involved in the argument. Other users are entitled to choose not to enter into debate with you.
Do not post or link to any inappropriate, offensive or illegal material. Do not post any advertisements.
The use of emoji’s and/or other images to convey inappropriate meaning consistent with the rules outlined above will also be moderated.
Do not raise concerns about the moderation on the Site as it disrupts the flow of any discussion. Any queries regarding moderation are to be directed to the moderation team at firstname.lastname@example.org (External link).
Any breach of the moderation rules may be dealt with by one or more of the following methods at our sole discretion:
Removal of comment – if your comment, in the view of the moderator, breaches the rules it will be removed.
Temporary Suspension – if you do not follow the moderation rules you may be suspended from access to the Site for a period(s) of up to one week or such a longer period of time at our sole discretion. The period will reflect both the severity and consistency of the breach.
Permanent Blocking – if you continue to violate the moderation rules following reinstatement after a period of suspension then you may have your access to the Site permanently blocked.
Automatic Blocking – if you post or link to inappropriate, offensive or illegal material then you will be immediately blocked from the Site.
These are not rules; they are suggestions to help keep the Site respectful and constructive.
Read through the information on the Site and the other user's comments before getting involved in the discussion yourself.
Respect the views of other users even if they do not agree with you.
Be constructive. It is okay to disagree with other forum users, in fact we encourage debate, just keep the dialogue positive.
Keep things civil. We recognize that this may be difficult sometimes, especially when you are passionate about an issue, but it is important to keep the discussion focused on the issues rather than letting it deteriorate into personal insults.
Once you have left your comment keep an eye on the project to see what other people have to say.
If you believe that someone has insulted you, report their comment to the moderator by clicking the “Alert Moderator” button. Do not perpetuate the dispute. The moderator will take a look at the offending comment and decide whether it should be removed.
Stay on topic. The projects on this Site have been created for a specific purpose. Please stay within the boundaries of the subject matter.
Turn off the "CAPS LOCK". Writing in ALL CAPS is the equivalent of SHOUTING and can cause offence.
Choose one place to post each of your unique comments. Do not cut and paste the same comment into lots of different places on the Site. These will be considered duplicates and may be removed.
Do not be a "troll". Trolls intentionally incite annoyance or offense. They do not participate constructively in the discussion and do not add any value to the debate.
Do not bully, harass or threaten other users. If another user offers an opinion that you do not agree with, you have no right to demand that they support their position with a detailed argument. They do not have to respond to your questions. It is up to you and other users to participate as much or as little as your and other users wish.
Please respect the moderators. Their job is to keep the forum safe and constructive so that everybody gets to have their fair say. It is not always an easy job.
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens if my comment is moderated?
If you post something to the Site which gets moderated (removed), you will receive a notification via email informing you of our decision. You will be informed as to which of the moderation rules you are in breach of and asked to review and resubmit your contribution.
What if I disagree with a moderation decision?
If you disagree with a moderation decision you are able to get in touch with support by contacting email@example.com(External link). While the final moderation decision lies with the moderators, you may indicate to us why you think your contribution should be accepted. In some instances you will be referred to the owner of the Site for a final decision.
Can a website owner remove my comment just because they don’t like it?
All comments moderated by our moderators are done so in accordance with the moderation rules outlined above. The owner of this Site however, reserves the right to request a contribution be moderated if they feel it is in breach of these moderation rules. In this instance, you will receive a notification via email.
Can I report a comment for moderation and will I be anonymous?
If you feel a comment or contribution to the Site is in breach of the moderation rules outlined on this page, you are within your right to alert the moderators. Simply locate the “alert moderator” link near the comment you believe needs to be escalated to our moderation team. Alerting a moderator will not reveal your identity to the person who posted the comment and you will remain anonymous to other users, however, your identity will be known to the moderators.
How will I know if I have been blocked from the site?
If you do not follow our moderation rules you may incur sanctions as outlined above. In the instance that you are blocked from the Site, you will receive an email notification informing you of your sanctions and the conditions of those sanctions.
Is moderation independent of the Site owner?
Yes. Moderation is independent of the owner of the Site. However, there are only three places on the Site where on-site pre-moderation occurs. The owner of the Site (the Region and the Cities) can choose to pre-moderate the story telling, guest book and/or question and answer tools if they so choose.
Changes to this Moderation Policy
We reserve the right, at our sole discretion, to update, change or replace any part of this Moderation Policy without further notice or liability. If we do this, we will post the changes to this Moderation Policy on the Site and will indicate at the bottom of this Moderation Policy the date this Moderation Policy was last revised. It is your responsibility to check the Site periodically for changes. Your continued use of or access to our Site or the service following the posting of any changes to this Moderation Policy constitutes acceptance of those changes.
Update Date: November 2, 2018