Section 2: Unacceptable Behavior on VOTS
The following behavior will not be tolerated under any circumstances:
- Threats of violence or any form of bullying, abuse, intimidation, personal insults and attacks, or harassment.
- Discrimination and bigotry - posts that are racist, homophobic, sexist or in any other way disparaging of another site user based on race, religion, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, age, or mental or physical health status.
- Accusations of discrimination or other unacceptable behavior – posts accusing other users of racism, sexism, homophobia or other forms of discrimination, or other violations of site policy. The appropriate response to an inappropriate comment is to flag it for the moderators (see Section 3).
- Using strawmen, assigning motives, or taking statements made by other users out of context, in an attempt to discredit other users or as a means of disrupting or poisoning the discussion.
- “Outing” other users – revealing any personal information whatsoever without that user’s express permission.
- Thread hijacking – repeated posting of comments with the intent of dominating or derailing a discussion.
- Stalking – following a fellow user from one article to another to continue arguing with or harass that person.
- Spamming – whether outside salesmanship or repeating the same point repeatedly in a comment thread.
- Ratings abuse - downrating comments based solely on disagreement with or personal dislike of the commenter.