Skip to comments.Religion Forum Guidelines
Posted on 01/26/2007 9:05:39 AM PST by Religion Moderator
I am the current Religion Moderator and have general responsibility for this Religion Forum on Free Republic. However, all moderators have authority on the RF as well and prior RMs may log in with my handle. So the person handling your abuse reports may or may not be me, but usually it will be.
I diligently try to read all of your posts, but am not here 24/7 and cannot remember all of the slights and parties involved on every single sidebar much less when posters carry grudges between threads. So if you are wondering why I singled one guy out and not the other involved in a dispute, often it is because I either did not see a previous post or did not remember it as part of the sidebar.
If the other guy in the dispute was given a warning, consider yourself warned as well.
I make every effort to treat all confessions with an even hand. Some here say that is not so evidently because their own confession is the target of what they consider to be more challenges and ridicule than the other guys confession. First, there is no confession on the Religion Forum with clean hands if you doubt that, check out the threads where the article is for the other guys confession. Secondly, some confessions are far more contentious than others evidently as part of the doctrine.
Some posters argue for their confessions as if their lives depended on it because, frankly, to many of them it does. Flame wars ignite over petty, miserably petty, minutia. Therefore, I hold all the Religion Forum posters to a tough standard:
1. Discuss the issues all you want, but do NOT make it personal. Youll see this warning frequently on threads because the first offense in a flame war is often when one of the participants makes a personal remark about another Freeper, e.g. youre an idiot, liar, heretic and so on. Attributing motives to another poster or otherwise reading his mind is making it personal. Stick with the issues and youll be fine. When in doubt, double check your use of pronouns before hitting post.
2. Thin skinned RF posters should stick with the closed threads. I can and do intercede to keep posters from making it personal. There is nothing I can do to prevent a poster from taking it personal. And, frankly, many posters come to the RF with huge chips on their shoulders. Such posters are as guilty of causing flame wars as the ones who actually do make it personal.
3. Closed threads on the Religion Forum include devotionals, prayer threads and caucuses. The header of the thread should make it obvious that the thread is closed, i.e. like a church meeting behind closed doors. Such assemblies will not be disturbed. Any challenges or ridicule will be removed. Any thread can be designated a caucus - e.g. labeled as a [Catholic Caucus] or [LDS Caucus] - provided that neither the article nor any of the posts challenge or ridicule any other confession. These are safe harbors for those who are easily offended or are ill equipped to defend their own confession.
It is disingenuous to complain that your confession is being maligned when you are NOT using the caucus designation to protect the thread from challenges!
4. All other threads on the Religion Forum are Open which means they are like a town square. Challenges and ridicule will occur. Expect them to be contentious, rough or even insulting. Your confession will be maligned on open threads. Your beloved religious figures will be ridiculed. Dont complain because the author or a religious figure is called a liar, demon, heretic or whatever on an open thread. It is to be expected in the town square. Remember too that the Religion Forum is densely populated with highly educated theologians. If you are ill-equipped to defend your confession, youll get beat up on Open thread. When in doubt, ping one of your best defenders and withdraw to a Closed thread.
As much as is possible I try to use a progressive method with uncooperative Religion Forum posters a warning, and if that warning is ignored, a cookie (making him log in again), and if that is ignored, an hour suspension and so on up to a banishment. I do this because an occasional misstep on such sensitive matters as ones confession should be tolerable. But I will not be ignored.
Posters who have been previously banned and try to come back with a different handle will be banished as soon as they are found out. Some retreads stay off the radar by behaving themselves, but once they start picking fights they cause the moderators any of us to investigate. If you have been previously banned and want to come back on the forum, make a request, promise not to do whatever caused the first banning.
A poster may also be banned in an instant if he is discovered to be a racist, a hate monger including an anti-Semitist, troll, anti-Freeper, etc.
There will be people on the forum who are anti- your confession whether anti-Christian, anti-Calvinist, anti-Catholic, anti-Protestant, anti-Mormon, anti-Atheist, anti-Scientologist and so on. As long as they are arguing for their position on an Open thread and are not using hate mongering material such as the false oath for Knights of Columbus or Jack Chick cartoons and are otherwise abiding by the guidelines, their challenges will be tolerated.
Threads that become toxic which is to say have devolved into an unredeemable mess of hurt feelings will be locked or pulled. I prefer to lock the threads because many posters put a great deal of effort in their replies and would like to keep them bookmarked.
Best wishes to you sir. Sorry we here on the RF have slung enough mud that a moderator is needed.
With all due respect, would you please explain what you mean by "confessions?" I always thought of a confession as something you admitted when you got busted and were in trouble, so you gave your confession to keep from getting in any more trouble than you were already in. LOL At first I thought you meant an individual's post, but I wish you would clarify it for all of us. Thanks! :o)
I don't hang out in the RF, but I will swing by to say, "Good luck to you, and Godspeed RM."
A "confession" in this case is whatever a person believes. It may be theistic or atheistic, Christian or Hindu, Catholic or Protestant, LDS or Scientology or Presbyterian or Baptist, and so on.
It's not of the Lord to gossip or condemn other Christians. The Bible sets forth clear instructions on how we are to deal with a Christian who is not preaching/teaching the Word. When people attack other Christians and have not follow those instructions, then they ought not to be condemning others. The Bible tells us to watch the words of our mouth and to guard our tongues, because they can be deadly weapons, and can literally ruin people.
If the Bible tells us to "watch the words of our mouth and to guard our tongues", how much more so should we watch what we post on these forums, since we have all the chances we need to preview what we write and give our written words due consideration.
So--if uncharity comes from our written words, which we have a chance to review, then we are more than ever responsible for them
Fair enough, but I do have 2 questions:
1. Are you the same RM we've had for the past several months or a new one?
2. In the past I've posted Jack Chick cartoons as a parody, not as an attack or as a truth. Is it the context that matters or is he totally off limits?
I'm the same one. Jack Chick cartoons are off limits even when posted as a piñata, though some absurd sources do make fun for all. I have been known to "zot" ....
***even when posted as a piñata**
If he is not a Freeper, then yes - he can be called names (as long as they are not profane of course.)
Excellent guidelines, RM...
Is it ok if I give decaffeinated chocolate bars to my pit bull?
If your mutt is anything like mine, giving him chocolate will cause him to ralph his guts out ... then go and post nasty personal remarks on the FR Religion Forum.
See....Maha Relig Mod knows all!
For what it's worth, the Dallas City Council has decided that dogs can eat with their owners at outdoor restaurants.
America can have a little ralph with its JR & Sue Ellen.
No suggestions (you do an excellent job), but I do have a question: How are the religion moderators selected?
I'm not really sure what was involved in my being selected. Perhaps I'll discover how it happens when the next one is selected.
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