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already a member then please review these policies and update the new field in your user profile called 'Privacy
Policy Acceptance' accordingly. If you do not set this field to YES then your account risks
- Don't harass other people.
No one should make threats, or reveal identifying information
about another person.
- Don't make bigoted remarks.
Don't apply epithets to people or make crude generalisations
based on people's age, race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
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In other words, do not attack people or their characters,
or post swearing or profanity. Debates are welcome, especially debates that have substance. If your opponent's
argument is truly weak, you shouldn't have to resort to insults. If it is necessary to post swear words (from
example in a quote), ensure you mask the words using * or something equivalent.
- Don't relay messages for people who have been gagged or banned.
If people have been gagged
at the forum or locked out of the forum, it's because we don't want to hear from them anymore. Allowing people
to relay messages for them would be counterproductive.
Please do not post complete articles or significant sections of articles. If you
want to refer to an article, quote a small selection and add a link to the site. Always give your sources and
the URL where appropriate. Copyright applies to texts, pictures, etc and the site can be held responsible if
people post things here that breach the laws. If we see complete texts being posted or other copyright
infringements, we will remove the post.
Please don't ask us to do or correct your homework; this is a place to discuss
language. We do not do homework or assignments for people. If we suspect that a question is an assignment, we
will not answer it and may edit or delete it.
We at UsingEnglish.com try to keep our forums a clean and safe environment, and
one way to do this is to keep profanity away; if you see a post with profanity, please report the post to us
immediately for deleting.
Don't post the same message more than once. Do not post any unsolicited
advertising - spamming is not tolerated. If you want to advertise your forum or web page, check with the
moderator first to make sure it's OK.
All spam will be deleted and the poster will be banned from the forum.
define spam as:
- The posting of irrelevant or inappropriate links
- The posting of multiple links aimed solely at promoting a site, even if they are connected
- Site owners pretending to have found a great site they want to share with us
- Site owners posting links to pages in their site without any attempt to participate in the forum
- Schools posting job adverts
If you do have a relevant ESL link, you can submit it for approval in
our ESL Web DirectoryReporting
Our forum allows you to draw attention to spam or other inappropriate content by reporting
problem posts to the forum staff and moderators.
In the bottom left-hand corner of every message there is a Report
Bad Post sign which looks like this:
If you see a message on our forum that you feel is
offensive, inappropriate or just spammy advertising, simply click the Report Bad Post icon to alert us to
- Religion and Politics
This is a forum with members from all over the world, and therefore
political discussion is banned due to its potential to offend.
Discussions about religion and politics often
become arguments very quickly. Our general policy is not to have such discussions. We are a language forum and,
as far as possible, discussions should stick to language issues. There are political aspects to language
learning and teaching, but any discussion that starts to get heated will be closed or deleted.
- About making posts in languages other than English.
As this is a forum designed for members
learning English, we would like most posts to be in English. However, we recognise that a few posts in other
languages will happen in any thread, but if you wish to have full conversations in other languages, please post
them in the Other Languages folder.
We are a language discussion forum and do not offer a free proofreading
service. You are free to put texts up for people to look at, but there is no guarantee that they will be
proofread. If it's a short text, people will usually help. Most teachers get enough marking and correction at
work, so some requests may not get done.
It make also take time before anyone does it, so posting something
that requires urgent attention is not advisable. Allow people time- they are coming here in their free time out
of interest. Proofreading is a time-consuming activity, and if you need things done urgently, there are plenty
of pay sites that will meet your needs.
- Inappropriate Advice
We are an ESL forum and many of our students are taking
formal exams, so please ensure that advice given takes this into account. In particular, descriptivists and
prescriptivists are expected to co-exist without attacking each other. If there are problems or issues
about the forum that you wish to discuss privately, feel free to send a message to one of the moderators. Please
don't send language questions; these should be posted in the forum.
- Private messages
This forum allows you to send Private Messages to other members. This is
like sending an email, though the person receiving the message will not see your email address, just your
username. This way, you can communicate privately, so if you want to exchange emails or Skype, ICM, etc details,
Any harassment, inappropriate usage, advertising, etc will result in the person being
If there are problems or issues about the forum that you wish to discuss privately, feel free
to send a message to one of the moderators. Please don't send language questions; these should be posted in the
Member Profile Rules
- Profile names should not be advertisements
Profile names should be real name or avatars,
not advertisements. If your profile name is either a web address or the name of a product then this equates to
it being an advertisement and you will be required to change it. You request to change it by following the FAQ
entry called 'How do I change my username?'. If you refuse to change it you will be
banned for attempting to spam our forum.
As noted in the above, there is an FAQ item that
describes how you can make a request to change your username, which you can find here.
- Use accurate information about your location & language
Please complete your member
profile with accurate information about your location and language. This helps other users of the forum get a
better understanding of your needs when answering your questions or replying to your posts.
- Don’t create clones, multiple accounts or ‘sock puppets’
accounts and sock-puppets, accounts created by a poster to agree and to try to make their views look more
accepted, will be removed.
When people are banned, the ban applies to the person, so any further accounts
they make will be closed.
Each case will be taken on its own merit, but in general the procedure is as follows:
- The member will receive a formal warning
- If, after the formal warning the behaviour persists, the member will be gagged for a period of 2 weeks.
- If after being gagged the behaviour still continues, the member will be banned permanently.
Rules for specific sections of the forum
Replying in the Ask a teacher Section
are welcome to answer questions posted in the Ask a Teacher forum as long as your suggestions, help, and advice
reflect a good understanding of the English language. If you are not a teacher, you will need to state that clearly
in your posts. Please note, all posts are moderated by our in-house language experts, so make sure your suggestions,
help, and advice house the kind of information an international language teacher would offer. If not, and your posts
do not contribute to the topic in a positive way, they will be subject to deletion. Please remember, the person
whose questions you are answering or whose thread you are contributing ideas to believes the help is coming from a
Editing and Writing Topics
Please read some of the questions (essays submitted for
corrections and comments) in this section before posting your own. You may find that your question (at least in
part) has already been answered.
Please, please space between
Use the first sentence (or first paragaph) to explain what
the subject of the essay is. In the body of the essay, make your case. In the last sentence (or last paragraph) sum
up your argument.
Always aim for clarity.
When making changes, please
make a new post. Please do not change things in the original.