Discussion Rules

Read the rules before posting!

Starting May 2006 this blog is on moderated comments. This is due to the number of people posting without reading the rules first. If you fail to abide by the rules below, your comment will be deleted and you will be banned. This is a blog for discussion, not for commenters to complain about feminism. Please read this to find out why this blog is moderated.

    1. My Blog is My Home
My blog is my home and each post is a party thrown by the author. If you were invited to the party of a stranger, you would be expected to be on your best behaviour. Indeed, you would be expected to be polite to your host and, if she said something you disagreed with, to argue the matter with the utmost respect and decorum. Otherwise it would be within her rights to toss you out on your ass. It is her house, after all, and you are her guest. Similarly, you are expected to be respectful on this blog — regardless of how the author acts — and if you are not, it is within her right to delete your comments and ban you from posting.
    1. Disagree, But Be Polite
I cannot emphasise this enough, especially for our non-regulars. The less I know you, the less I will let you get away with. If you want your argument to be seen and read, then make it as polite as possible. With rare exception (ex. victim blaming), you won’t get deleted for expressing a dissenting viewpoint. You will, however, get deleted if you’re judged to be too rude.
    1. This Blog Is Against Oppression
We here at OS.CB hate oppression. Hate it in all of its forms: sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia, heterosexism, ablism… We write because of the frustration, and often the hope that by doing so we can do our small part in helping to combat the injustices of the world. While everyone, including us, will make mistakes, you should be aware that this blog engages with anti-oppression terminology and ideology on a regular basis. We’re not here to educate you about the basics of feminism (that’s what feminist_101 is for) or any other anti-oppression movement, but if you’re honestly confused about a usage (feminist or otherwise) you may ask politely for us to explain it to you.If you don’t agree with our reading, you may make your case in a polite way, but don’t bother to comment on a post if you aren’t willing to interact with the terms and ideology it employs. You can have a differing opinion, but while posting here you need to respect the terminology or your comment will not be posted.

Please note: Claiming “reverse” -isms (ex. “reverse racism”) is not acceptable on this blog. While individuals can be prejudiced towards one another, -isms are prejudice + institutional or cultural power.

    1. Check Your Privilege
Because this blog is an anti-oppression blog, you are expected to keep your comments as privilege-free as possible. If a comment has privileged assumptions in it, you will be told so (usually first by someone saying that the comment is sexist, ablist, heterosexist, etc). If you continue, you will be told to check your privilege. If that happens, do not argue that your comment wasn’t coming from a position of privilege. You instead need to stop and try to understand why you were told to check your privilege. If you want clarification, you’re more than welcome to ask politely for it. However, it’s not productive for you to claim that you weren’t asserting privilege and therefore those kinds of comments are not welcome.
    1. Don’t State Stereotypes as Facts
A large stumbling block in the path to equality is our reliance on stereotypes. From the time we’re young, we learn to relate by generalizations and assumptions about people. This blog is about deconstructing stereotypes, not endorsing them. If you want to bring up a discussion on stereotypes in a relevant thread, you’re free to do so. If you want to state that you and/or others believe in a stereotype, then you need to do so in a way that makes it clear that it’s an opinion, not a fact. Saying that “feminism ignores men’s issues,” for instance, is not acceptable, but stating that “people’s/my perception of feminism is that ignores men’s issues,” is perfectly fine. Please note: The more vitriolic stereotypes, like “feminists are man-haters,” are not acceptable except in a discussion surrounding the ramifications of said negative stereotypes.
    1. Flames and Trolling Are Not Allowed
If you come on this blog for the express purpose of causing trouble, your post will be deleted without notice and your IP will be banned. No warning, no appeals, and no second chances.
    1. Personal Attacks Will Not Be Tolerated
There are times that I, or another author, will call people names in our posts. If you find our particular attack offensive, you may point it out if and only if you are polite about it. You may not “return fire” in your post, however. And any personal attack launched on an author or commenter is subject to either a warning or deletion, depending on how severe the infraction.
    1. No Hijacking of Threads
Off-topic discussions are tolerated to a certain extent. I understand that threads can, and often do, take a life of their own. However, an attempt to come into a discussion for the express purpose of disrupting the main conversation will be seen as trolling. This includes invoking The “What About the Mens?” Phallusy with arguments like, “but this happens to men, too!” or otherwise trying to shift the focus from an oppressed group onto the individual oppressions a majority group faces. It’s one thing to relate one’s experiences and opinions when appropriate, but bringing up how the poor mens/whites/heterosexuals/etc. have problems, too, when the author’s discussion was about the institutionalized or individual acts of oppression of a minority is not appropriate. Any comment that tries to de-rail a thread is subject to either a warning or deletion, depending on how severe the infraction.
    1. Read the Post Before Commenting
There has recently been a problem with people seeing that this a feminist blog and then making assumptions about what’s being said without actually reading the post. Especially if you disagree, be sure to read and actually understand the post before commenting. Comments that make accusations about things that were not said will be treated as trolls and not published.
    1. Engage with the Subject of the Post
As the blog grows in popularity, more and more it gets hit by “activism spam,” meaning people (or bots) who search the internet for key words and then post a form comment on as many blogs as possible. Even though these comments often touch on issues relevant to the blog, if they are not relevant to the post then they will be marked as spam and deleted. Advertise your issues on your own blog, not ours.
    1. Don’t Dissmiss the Author’s Point
In the same vein as thread hijacking, don’t comment just to tell the author how useless/uncessary her post is. We have enough people telling us to “grow a thicker skin” when we object to offensive jokes, or telling us “it’s just a game/tv show/movie/etc!” when we try to discuss the connections between oppression and culture, or having them tell us to stop saying women are oppressed because “men have it bad, too” or “not all women would agree”, and it will not be tolerated on a space that’s specifically for discussing our opinions on the world. If you disagree with a point, you can say so without negating that point as a valid argument. Any comment that is judged to be a dismissal is subject to either a warning or deletion, depending on how severe the infraction.
    1. Do Not Blame The Victim
Under no circumstances is it okay on this blog to say, imply, or otherwise condone putting blame on the victim of abuse, rape, domestic violence, or any other crime. Most people wouldn’t tell a mugging victim that he deserved it and it’s no more appropriate to say the same to any other victim, no matter their circumstances were. Victim blaming includes anything from, “By wearing a short skirt, she was asking for it!” to calling the behaviour of the victim “irresponsible”. Any comment deemed to be victim blaming is subject to either a warning or deletion, depending on how severe the infraction.
    1. Check Your Condescension At the Door
If you come onto the blog with an attitude of superiority, talk down to me (or the authors, or our commenters), or act like we owe you anything, your post will be subject to either a warning or deletion, depending on how severe the infraction.
    1. The Author Rules All
Similar to the first rule, this one is just to clarify that the author of the post can enforce them as she sees fit. In rare cases of rule breaking I might step in to enforce something, but for the most part it’s up to whoever is posting. Ultimately, the authors have control over what they will and will not allow on their threads.

Last Updated: December 11, 2006.

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