I know that I am new and not a moderator so I do not know how much weight my opinion will carry but since everyone has opinions I feel I must give mine. I am a moderator on three other forums not related to trucking and also an owner of a private forum. Unfortunately spam on forums is a problem that mods around the world are constantly and always will be fighting.:smt065 With that being said. I can think of many ways to combat this so if you need ideas ask me....as I said I run my own forum in which spam is non existant.:smt033 The list of rules that Rawlco made is a good one, however I feel the last rule is not a good one. Linking to forums can be a great thing if done correctly. Forums including this one are a great source of information....but NO forum has everything. Combine the knowledge of multiple forums and you can cover just about everything. Linking to competing forums for the purpose of passing on information is a good thing and should not be suppressed. Now if a link to a competing forum is a blatent attemt to make people join said forum the poster should be banned. But if I find an interesting article in another forum with information that all truckers should know I should be able to post a link. Its a much better idea then stealing their information and reposting it here without giving the writer of said post on that forum credit where it is do. Heres my two cents....no need to pay me back!
Website links allowed and not?
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It's hard to tell the reasons behind a link to another forum. While it may well be completely on the up and up, it's very possible to have one forum attempting to grab people away. I make it a point when I give someone the info, rather than linking directly, I will tell them the name and location of the other site without providing it in the form of a direct link. They can easily put that info into google or some other search engine and bring it up. I'm a little bit leery of too much internet access. Additionally, there are some limits I would prefer to see on interlinks between various sites. It is possible for denizens of one site to get together in a group and raid other sites. I was involved in that a couple of years ago on a snowmobile site. We had an environmental site that was badly trashing snowmobilers and sleds, and we basically raided their forum and turned it into an auxiliary board for the snowmobilers and held onto it for about a month or so. Any thread that got started there turned into a thread on snowmobiling. Had that link not been provided, it probably wouldn;t have happened like it did.
I just realized that I had not weighed in on this one.
Links that are inserted into a post, as long as they are offered in conjunction with the content of that post, no matter where they point to, and as long as it relates in some way to the subject of the post, or is offered in response to a request for assistance for online information.
Even links to a source of products or services should be allowed, as long as it is offered in response to a request.
"Does anyone know where I can find an online source of Freightliner parts?"
"Here's a place I have done business with or that may be what you are looking for - link"
But, if someone offers a link in an unsolicited manner, or a pattern of pointing to a same site occurs, we all know that something is up with that, and then there's an infraction of the rule on links to deal with.
I don't feel that cutting and pasting to navigate a link, and eliminating the ability to click on a link, will be welcomed by many people. It's going too far.
As some may have noticed, I try to make it a habit to underline all links that are offered when I make a post with them in it, and I think that all should do this as well, to readily identify links and as a matter of courtesy. All it takes to do it, is to highlight the link by running your mouse across it with your left mouse button held down, release it when it is completely highlighted, and then clicking on the "U" at the top left of the text box tool bar.
I don't think that people are going to the trouble of seeking hidden links in posts, so anyone that is trying that tactic is not really going to succeed if they do try to bury them. I mean, who uses their mouse pointer to go over every word in a post while reading them? A rule could be established that simply states that no hidden links within text will be allowed, and one violation of this rule results in an automatic ban of all privileges.
Rawlco's list covers the areas of concern, and I will comment;
1) Spam is NOT allowed. - already covered in TOS
2) Links to offensive material (like porn) NOT allowed - Already covered in TOS
3) Obvious advertising links are NOT allowed. - Covered in TOS
4) Links to information about trucking specific products reviewed by truckers (like GPS software) are allowed once only per poster in a "product review" section of the forum. - I would expand this to include trucking related products and services, if a member specifically requests assistance in locating online sources of information on a service or product. New members would be scrutinized for suspicious IP addresses and any creation of multiple member names, if they have any ambitions to create the dialog as a backdoor attempt to advertise.
5) Links that provide free information ARE allowed. - agreed.
6) Links to news articles ARE allowed, and required when quoting news stories. - Yes, citing the source of a news story or source of quoted information is the polite thing to do, so that credit is given to the source. A link to the source is expected in these cases.
7) Links to free government websites ARE allowed. - Agreed
8} Links to trucker blogs, stories, news ARE allowed. - If it relates in some way to trucking, I see no harm, as long as it does not appear to be offered to receive "hits" to a personal site of some sort. If a member finds that something they think others might be interested in, and will offer a short description of why they might find it interesting, no problem. If they simply write, "Hey I found a neat site!", and then a link, I don't like to see those, and they should be deleted.
9) Links to competing forums are NOT allowed. - This one is tricky. No link should be allowed in an unsolicited manner to ANY site at any time, but what if someone is aware of a thread on another forum or board, that contains some relevant information that doesn't exist here? I don't see the harm in pointing someone to ANY source that will help them, again, upon request only.
For example, there are boards that are mainly comprised of union drivers. Others are one specific company oriented, such as the one that is set up for Schneider drivers. We seem to have attracted more of those that are new to, or want to enter the industry, who are inquisitive about training companies and CDL training schools, and we discuss the good and bad points of companies extensively.
Pointing people to sources of content that may help them is only positive, and hopefully those that are aware of us, point people in our direction when they know that we may have information on what a poster to their site is looking for. Many members of this board are members of other boards as well.
After all, I don't feel that we are engaged in a form of "turf war" or anything like it.
The above are strictly my personal opinions, and nothing more.
Ok, I think Turbo has hit on it again and has stated it very well! Turbo, can you draw up a rule list that we will ALL abide by just like you have stated above? I think you took all the answers in this thread into account and the time has come to write up a DEFINITIVE listing now. Please write it up, then post it as a thread that is locked and CANNOT be commented on as it is the rule list. Also, please post in the admin section so we can link to it as reference whenever needed and I can link to from the home site, thanks! If you are too busy, let me know and we will work it out somehow. I must go do my lawn now or I'm afraid that I'll start seeing monkeys soon, LOL. Turbo, please PM me if you need any more info on this list, etc. I agree with the way you stated it just fine. I think we are all basically in agreement now. Thanks!
Also: NO links/e-mails in signatures, except Admin, Mods, Supporters, and NO e-mails in signatures OR posts, period as those can be a privacy issue, thanks!
i haven't read through all these posts as some are quite long and i tend to fall asleep when reading at a glaring screen.
i believe that links are useful when used by us members here. either to guide an individual someplace or to ask questions about some subjects, we need to "show" what we are talking about.
i think that if we were to have to start paying for a membership here just to post links, it would take away some of the useful advantages these boards have, as i for one would not spend a cottin'pickin' dime just for the sake of helping out others. they would then be left to "fend for themselves" in finding information. i put some effort in doing searches on these boards and providing links when neccessary to those in need.
my 2¢ worth..................(figurativly speaking), as i ain't sending you 2¢.....
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