Suspension and warning policies
We frequently receive inquiries into why a Member has had their posting privileges suspended and how warnings and issues related to suspensions are handled. We have summarized the most common questions and information below to help you understand our policy.
The guiding light of this policy is to maintain a supportive, non-intimidating environment, and prevent flame-wars that plague many online discussion forums.
1. Why do Members get suspended?
We suspend a Memberís posting privileges when they violate the forum rules. The forum rules are displayed when Members join the forum and no one can register unless they first click on the "Agree" box.
If we allow violations of the forum rules, such as flames, spam, insults, harassment, trolling
to occur, it damages the supportive environment of the forum. Fear of flames and/or insults from others may intimidate Members and keep them from asking or offering support.
2. What are the forum rules?
The forum rules can be easily accessed by clicking on the FAQ link:
3. What options do forum Members have if they do not agree with the forum rules?
In this case, there are two options:
A) If you would like to suggest changes to the forum rules, or if you have an alternative method for effectively managing an online support community, free from flame wars, spam or other problems, we will be glad to hear from you! But please be very specific about your suggestions for change (saying "the rules are stupid" is not very specific) 4. What does being suspended mean? What happens?
B) Join another forum.
When a Member is suspended, they will no longer be able to post and will receive an error message indicating that they do not have permission to access the site (or a similar message).
When a Member is suspended for the first time, it is considered a cooling-off period. Suspension of posting privileges prevents Members from committing further violations of the forum rules when tempers flare and the line of acceptable behavior is crossed. This system provides the suspended Member with a cooling-off period, with time to carefully consider their words or actions and to re-read the forum rules. When the suspended Member is ready to contact us at the email address we have provided, they will also be sent a copy of our Forum Rules. They will be asked for their assurance that they will not repeat the offense and that they will respect our forum rules in the future.
5. Why don't you send a warning prior to suspending?
Past experience has demonstrated that many of our Members have expired email addresses, or have strict anti-spam programs that will prevent them from receiving email from us. In addition, the member's email address may be shared with others, such as roommates, family, or coworkers and may not be completely private. For this reason, the displayed message will also include an email address at which the Member should contact us. By doing so, we can ensure we use the correct email and that the Member is willing to accept our emails at that address.
6. How can Members be reinstated?
Following a suspension, the Member simply needs to contact us and affirm that they will respect the forum rules and not repeat the violation.
7. How many times may suspended Members be reinstated?
We are always willing to offer a second chance, but only one.
8. In what circumstances will a suspended Member not be allowed back?
The following represents the most common reasons for denying a suspended member a second chance:
9. Who decides which Member should be suspended?
A. The suspended Member attempts to circumvent the suspension by re-registering under a different user name. This indicates that the Member is not interested in contacting us, or in respecting the forum rules.
B. The suspended Member circumvents contacting us by asking other members to post publicly on their behalf. The most common scenario is that other Members will complain publicly about the suspension and assert that no violation has occurred. This is unfair to everyone involved, as the offensive posts that caused the suspension would already have been removed. Therefore making it appear as though no violation of the forum rules has occurred.
C. Contacting us directly, but failing to accept the forum rules. In such cases, we will agree to disagree, but we will not make an exception for Members who do not agree to follow the forum rules.
Our team consists of volunteer Administrators and Moderators. Decisions on suspending a Member are not made lightly. We do everything possible to make sure that disagreements on issues and opinions (low-carb or otherwise) do not interfere with application of the forum rules.
10. I have read all the posts made by Member X, and found no violations.
This is because all posts that violate forum rules are removed when a Member is suspended. It is unfair to Members who are the targets of insults or flaming to keep an insulting post in public view on the forum.
11. Why do other Members get away with violations?
We frequently hear the argument "Member X called me a name, so I'm entitled to reply in kind!"
Not true. If you read a post that contains any such violation, we ask that you do not further degenerate the discussion by adding more insults. The right way to handle this type of situation is by using the "report" feature
, which alerts Moderators to the post(s) in question.
In addition, we receive thousands of posts everyday, and it is not humanly possible for anyone to read every single post. If a violation did occur and you chose not to report it to us, that's fine. But you may not use such posts as an excuse to violate the forum rules yourself. Reporting such posts is the responsible thing to do.
12. Are journals exempt from the forum rules?
No. Any post made on our forum is subject to the same rules. If you violate the forum rules in your journal, it will be treated in the same way.
13. May I debate with Moderators?
Moderators are also Members, and have their own theories, views and opinions. You may disagree with a Moderatorís opinions and debate them as much as you want, as long as the topic is not related to their role as a Moderator. And we ask that you do not publicly debate how the forum is moderated. Examples:
14. But Iím a Contributing Member. Do the same rules apply to me?
A) "It was unfair for you to suspend Member X". As stated above, Members generally do not have access to the posts that were involved when a Member has been suspended. Therefore it is disruptive to publicly debate a matter that can not be supported with full details. Plus, questionable posts are often removed because they contain derogatory comments about other forum members. Deleting these posts protects everyone involved and helps us maintain a happy environment for all.
Also, while not being directly involved, some members choose to bring the entire forum into the debate by publicly posting details regarding the suspension of a member or when a member chooses to leave the forum in protest. Using the forum in this way is not acceptable. Members may use the PM feature to contact other members with this information and certainly they may communicate privately via any other medium they wish. They may not, however, use the forum or journal spaces to invite the entire forum into a debate or discussion of another memberís suspension.
B) "Right on! I support your decision to suspend Member X". Even if you are in support of our decision to suspend a Member, it is inappropriate to post about it publicly and you will be suspended. Such posts only further inflame other Members and may encourage further flame wars.
. Absolutely. Your financial support of the site is greatly appreciated and helps offset costs. However, the same rules and procedures apply to all Members of the forum. Contributing Membership does not bring additional chances or preferential treatment.
Active Low-Carber Team