New Guidelines - posted on 7/1/2012
The WR message board was created to form a community. As with any other community there will be relationships and roles that develop. Everyone can find a place in it and will if they mean to be a positive member of the community.
We each bring our own skills, ideas, talents, likes and creations to the community and while you do not have to be everyone's friend... we do expect that in public dealings with each other we will maintain civil language and demeanors and that will strengthen the community.
We each have our own likes and dislikes and no one fan is more 'right' than the other when it comes to interpreting the show. No one has the right (save the creator/writers/actors) to say that a portrayal of a character in fan fiction is 'wrong.' We are all allowed to explore the way we see the characters.
From time to time, there will be disagreements with each other... but keeping in mind that this is a community, there are ways to discuss or even debate without resorting to nasty name-calling or hateful words. If you have a question about something someone said on the board... it is best to do it in private. Public rants or threats are not solutions and we do not respect that kind of behavior.
While some prefer to think about a fandom as something other than 'real life,' fandom is created by real-live-humans and we should treat each other as such. Devaluing someone merely because you met them on-line is silly.
the Writers Ranch was created over ten years ago to publish fan fiction without the long (sometimes several months) wait to see a story up on a site... we have never turned down a story based on the main characters (there were sites for specific characters and pairings) but there is no law or rule that says that we have to do anything for anyone, but we do it because it is fun and we enjoy what we do. We listen to suggestions and ideas, consider other viewpoints, but when it comes down to it decisions are made and not everyone will be pleased.
Please understand that we do this and pay for it out of our own pockets and do not need the stress or strain of cruel and hurtful comments.
If you come to the WR to be part of our community... please act in that manner and be a positive member of the group.
Old guidelines - Jan 2009
Many of our long time board members will realize that we're not really big "rules" people. We believe that we're all adults and therefore can and should act accordingly. We also believe strongly in The Golden Rule.
However...just so that there aren't any misunderstandings, or in case a problem crops up - which we fully don't expect it to - we've come up with just a few, common sense guidelines we hope our posters will understand and try to follow.
Our e-mail address is writersranch-at-hotmail.com (replace the 'at' with the @)
1. If you read a post that you find objectionable, please email the WritersRanch or PM one of the admins and bring the post to our attention. Do not to respond to or engage the original post on the board. If it is a misunderstanding or something truly objectionable, it is best left to, and will be handled by the admins. Further comment is made below regarding flame wars. If you do not bring things to the attention of the admin on this board, please do not fault us after the fact for not addressing it.
2. If you have a question about a procedure on the message board or the site, or are unsure about something, please feel free to drop us an e-mail. These are things that are best handled in e-mails and not on a public forum. If, though, we have a lot of questions about the same thing, we might make a post. That doesn’t mean that it will necessarily be open for discussion, we’ll just make a post to avoid multiple e-mails about the same subject.
3. If a link is broken, or a chapter is missing, or your story didn’t get posted, please send us an e-mail. Especially in the cases of broken links, particularly with updates, we will see the e-mail much quicker than we’ll get a chance to head to the board and see the post. We want to fix those broken links, but we ask for your patience. The same for your stories. We all understand the thrill of seeing your story in “print” and the anxiousness to get it posted, however, we all have busy lives and sometimes it takes an update or two. However, we try to e-mail you to let you know we have received your story so you know it hasn’t been lost in limbo. If several days have passed since you submitted your story and you have not heard from us, please send us an e-mail.
4. If you receive an e-mail/PM, in regards to a story, a post, etc. that you feel is insulting, or flaming, please forward it to us. We’re not asking people to tell tales out of school, but if someone is sending e-mails to our readers/posters that are hurtful – even if they’re well intentioned – we would like to know about it. Hopefully we will be able to mediate and diffuse ill or hurt feelings that would cause someone to leave the fandom or take those feelings onto the message board.
Flame wars stem from those hurt feelings and enmity between posters and they can escalate quickly. We have been fortunate in not having a major blow-up on our board, but we know they’ve occurred elsewhere in the past. Many board owners that we’ve spoken with had no idea of the tensions simmering under the surface because nobody talked to them.
5. If people abuse the site, they will be asked to leave. Abuse of others will not be tolerated on this site and board. Disagreements are human, natural and fine. It’s the manner in which those disagreements are handled that will be under scrutiny.
6. Please don’t take the law into your own hands. If you see someone post something that we’ve asked to be sent in an e-mail, don’t scold them and tell them that they’ve done it wrong. It is up to the admins or moderators to handle things regarding the board. Please send an e-mail to alert us of such a post, and we’ll come check it out and deal with it if necessary. Taking the matter into your own hands only causes ill-feelings among posters which can lead to the above-mentioned flame wars we’re trying to avoid.
7. Please remember that moderators and administrators are humans too. We run this site out of our mutual love for the show, and we have busy lives like everybody else. We try to create an environment that is welcoming for everyone, but realize that we won’t be able to please everybody all the time.
8. *NEW* if you post (either in your user info section, your signature, or in a message on the board) pornographic links you WILL BE DELETED no questions no notifications...
Questions about where something’s gone, why something’s changed, or telling us you miss a feature is fine, attacking us for perceived wrongs is no more welcome to us than it would be to you. Tone matters just as much to us, as it does to you.
Consequences: We hope we never have to use this...
If you are found in violation of the guidelines
1st time - You will receive an email/PM regarding the situation
2nd time - Your posting status will be changed to where an admin will approve
each post before it is visible to the rest of the board
3rd time - You will be suspended for a week from the board.
Let’s hope we don’t ever have to go any further than this…
There are certain circumstances when we might skip ahead to more intense reactions if there is something very serious going on such as someone threatening another member of the board.
Just wanted to give a quick shout-out to our mods!
It's not an easy job, and I know inevitably there will be trolls and flamers who behave inappropriately and make your lives more difficult. There are other fandoms I visit that ask for donations to keep the sites running, but you guys have always been so generous with your time, attention, and hard-earned money in providing us a place to congregate and chat about the show.
Thank you for providing such a great online "home" and working so hard to develop fair guidelines to make this a happier, more peaceful place to visit!