These rules and guidelines describe the acceptable and unacceptable ways to participate in a discussion in a MacRumors forum thread. These rules augment and clarify the general Forum Rules. Guidelines indicate the spirit of the rules. The Rules for Appropriate Debate are especially applicable to threads where there are strong or conflicting opinions, such as certain types of news and rumors discussions and debates in the Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum.
Guidelines: Show respect for your fellow posters. Expect and accept that other users may have strongly held opinions that differ from yours. In other words, basic human courtesy.
- Name-calling. Name-calling falls into the category of insults and will be treated as such according to the forum rules, your own opinion about another member notwithstanding. You can't call a bigot a bigot, a troll a troll, or a fanboy a fanboy, any more than you can call an idiot an idiot. You can disagree with the content of another member's statement or give your evidence or opinion to dispute their claims, but you may not make a negative personal characterization about that member.
- Hate speech and group slurs. We prohibit discrimination, abuse, threats or prejudice against a particular group, for example based on race, gender, religion or sexual orientation, in a way that a reasonable person would find offensive.
- Taunting. Mocking or taunting another forum member is not acceptable. Posts that ridicule another member or obviously exaggerate or misstate their views (including purposely mis-quoting them) may be removed.
Guidelines: Be willing to engage in fact-based, constructive debate. Look for ways to inform and learn from others.
- Sources. If you claim that something's a fact, back it up with a source. If you can't produce evidence when someone asks you to cite your sources, we may remove your posts. If you started the thread, then we may remove or close the thread.
- Repetition. If you repeat the same claims without adding new information, we might remove your posts. Again, if you started the thread, then we may remove or close the thread.
- Trolling. Posts that appear to be designed to cause argument or irritate rather than contribute to a constructive discussion are considered trolling and will be treated as such.
- Duplicate discussions. If a new thread repeats a topic that has been previously discussed or debated, without basis for a separate discussion, the thread may be closed, removed, or merged into an earlier thread on the same topic. A news report on a previously discussed issue doesn't automatically deserve a new thread.
Guidelines: Stay within the forum rules to preserve your membership privileges.
- Reporting. Members should report posts to call the moderators' attention to troublesome posts/posters.
- Responsibility. You're responsible for your own behavior. "I was goaded into breaking the rules" is not an excuse. If you think a post is inappropriate, report it, ignore it, and/or respond without breaking the rules.
- Suspensions. Forum members whose posts are removed for violating these rules may be subject to temporary or permanent account suspension (bans), particularly for repeated or serious rules violations.
Be sure to read our 2011, 2017 and 2019 announcements about moderation of the Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum.
If the rules aren't clear, ask for clarification before posting. You can ask privately using the Contact form or participate in public discussions about the rules.
You can post general comments or questions about forum rules and policies in the Site and Forum Feedback forum. However, for any specific instance of moderation or member discipline, use the Contact form instead.