First and foremost, let me make one thing clear: banning is not something done lightly here. With the exception of spam bots, there have been very few bannings on this site for violations of the rules or ethics.. This is supposed to be a family-oriented forum where the free exchange of ideas, mostly regarding SWPM, can be exchanged in a fair, secure, and comfortable atmosphere.
Most of us are guilty of minor infractions from time-to-time, me included. We've given + or -
for frivolous things, or made a "me too" or off-topic post, or even used language that was inappropriate. Occasional infractions aren't what result in a banning. It's the repeated infractions that result in it.
So, what constitutes an infraction that could be ban-worthy? Here's a short list. Remember that if something isn't listed but goes against the core rules of the forum (as I'm assuming everyone has read - it's a sticky) it can result in a banning.
- Repeated +/- Force to the same post
- Repeated +/- Force to the same user regardless of content
- Repeated +/- Force to the same user for reasons not related to the board (ie family, friend, etc)
- Artificially boosting ones own or anothers +/- Force count
- Artificially decreasing ones own or anothers +/- Force count
-- -- Artificial for the purposes of this board can be loosely defined as using multiple accounts, even if not created for that purpose
Forum Rule Violations:
- Abusive or harassing posts
- Inappropriate language or content
- Defrauding the community (via trades, contests, polls, personal identity, etc)
- Using this site to violate any laws with or without profit (mail fraud, credit fraud, identity fraud/theft, copyright infringement, etc)
- Single user with multiple accounts
- Post count padding
- Forum Necromancy (posting in threads that are old enough to give a warning in big red letters)
- Intentional thread derailing / off-topic posting (there is lots of leeway here as conversations tend to evolve on their own)
- "Me too" posts
- Automatic Nay-saying another user to the point of harassment (frequently opposing what another poster says regardless of content, without providing legitimate reason or argument as to why)
- Inappropriate Topic Locations (eg, posting I Love Super Hero Movies in the Custom Creations section)
Most of the above take multiple instances to result in a banning. A correction and then a warning is almost always given first. One thing that will always result in an immediate permanent banning: Lying to or disrespecting an Admin.
If I'm looking into questionable activity, a reported person or post, or just investigating something that caught my eye and I ask you about it, be upfront with me. I care for this community, and regard many of you as personal friends. I'm not looking to ban anyone, I'm just trying uncover if there was a reasonable infraction or not, and if so help anyone who may need it correct such behavior. It's always possible that someone just didn't know (though in this day and age, forum rules are pretty standard and well known.) However, if I pose an inquiry and I get the run-around, and attitude of being "cute" or "smart", or just plain lied too, I will ban without hesitation and that'll be that. There is no compensation for this job, and I do it out of my dwindling free time. I do it because I love it; I love SWPM, I love the community, and I love the friendship. I like to think I've earned enough respect that people can feel that they can be upfront with me about anything without my going off the deep end if it's done in a respectful and/or friendly manner; I believe my track record proves that. I won't tolerate being treated as the noob who has no clue what they're doing.
On that note, I should point out that I can see almost everything. While I can't invade your privacy of PM's, or any personal information entered at registration (and I wouldn't anyways), I can see all activity from IP addresses, posts, stats (even including which times of day a user has posted most frequently), which ISP was used, and even your location in the world. I can tell if a post was made from a private home computer, a company computer, a college computer, etc. I can see what type of Force was given, to whom, for which post, and how frequently. I can cross-reference users via email, IP address, posting times, etc.. In short, eventually abusers will
When I or another Admin ask, please answer truthfully, because if we're asking we want to know "why" whatever was done, not "if".
Thank you everyone for taking the time to read this.