You might be wondering what this is. It's not just a new topic with rules. It's a brand new category! It's been something we've really been working hard on to bring out to you guys. It's a little like the off-topic, but with a new twist. We're hoping that this topic will help to increase the awesome conversations you all have here on the forums. Below are the rules that we have set up for you all to enjoy this topic to the maximum capability.
So without further ado, we present and welcome you all to...
Spam is a problem. Eliminating spam is the goal. How do we reach that goal? Through community leader moderation and cooperation. However, we cannot reach this goal without the necessary convenience and general mobility of the moderators themselves. In an effort to examine the forums and utilize how it works; we have come to a consensus that one step towards less spam would be combining both the “general” and the “off-topic” thread category into a single category. We’ve decided to call the new category and this project “Community Discussions”.
ABOUT THE CATEGORY:
Community Discussions is the main category for discussions on The Aetherlight Forums. A combination of general and unrelated threads; its purpose is lively discourse through multiple threads concerning a range of different topics. It may include both topics concerning The Aetherlight: Chronicles of the Resistance itself as well as unrelated threads (e.g., Star Wars fans, Marvel fans, Fans of VeggieTales).
REASONING OF HAVING GENERAL DISCUSSIONS OVER OFF-TOPIC:
Mainly, we’re combining the two to maximize the potential of community discourse in general. We feel that having two separate categories alienates threads that would otherwise be fine to allow to be together. The change becomes necessary when “off-topic” is used as an excuse to allow excessive and Aetherlight-less content to places where it shouldn’t be, such as role-play. (see the NARP argument and role-play guidelines).
Combining the two also allows for easier moderation/regulation of the threads in general. The guidelines can better accommodate a single category rather than two separate sections. For example, adding film-spam ban will ban throughout community discussion rather than in just film-threads which are part of off-topic.
GUIDELINES FOR COMMUNITY DISCUSSIONS:
Forum members reserve the right and ability to create a topic under their own knowledge and no others without consequence outside of the Community Guidelines. Moderators also retain their own ability to shut down any thread that they deem against the Guidelines under the pretense of (A. spam), (B. explicit content), (C. something that is unnecessary or better fitted elsewhere). If any thread/topic is created that is deemed necessary to remove or lock under a reasonable reading of the Guidelines, the moderators reserve the full ability and opportunity to act on this with convenience to all parties if possible.
The thread “The Topic & Topic Idea Ratings Topic” has to be taken at face value and will only serve as a general vote for members to see how well a new thread will be received. The vote of the moderators and the vote of the members will hold their respective weight, but moderators retain their ability to shut the topic itself down on the grounds of content that goes against the Guidelines. However, to assure as much creativity and opportunity as possible, moderators cannot prevent a topic from being made unless it goes directly against the Guidelines. Unsure topics or test threads should be allowed to be created, and moderators can evaluate that.
The Guidelines serve as the one and only rule upon which to judge all topics and threads that are created. Moderators serve as carriers of this one rule to serve and protect the forums and its community. However, to prevent both mob rule and moderator rule, creativity and the innovation of ideas is above all the priority of the forums. This includes the fair use of role-plays as its methods, topic creation, and community chats. The Guidelines prevent bad things from happening, but it cannot force good to be created. The top priority is to encourage the creativity of the forums and the people within.