Discussion about Forum Guidelines

Hi guys!

I’m starting this topic for anyone who has suggestions / issues for the forum guidelines expressed in the Welcome to Natively Forums post.

Most of these guidelines were written by Discourse, our forum software, as potential good default guidelines. The major addition that I wrote was around keeping discussions on topic and disallowing certain controversial topics (political & medical discussions).

Please let me know your thoughts!

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It’s the first time I’ve seen medicine as an item under controversial topics, but I suppose I can see how it could turn into one. Religion should probably also go there.


Yes, medical topics was privately suggested as a controversial topic by one of our users, due to their poor experiences in moderating that topic in other forums. With covid treatments and covid vaccines these days, it’s a hotbed of controversy.

I thought about adding religion and I don’t know why I didn’t. Regardless, it’s there now, good call.


Perhaps that and racist slurs? I know some people consider race to be political, but it’s not, which leaves a bit of leeway for people to break that in there. -_- I’ve had my fair share of banning/muting people for using them.

Agree on slurs not being welcome, but some lesser known ones should get a “did you know that’s what it means?” first before banning or such as long as the rest of the content isn’t inflammatory. I’ve seen a fair number of people abbreviate “Japanese” to “jap” not knowing it’s used as a slur in (some? all?) English speaking countries.

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Oh, definitely! I didn’t mean to get an immediate ban, just that they’re topics that shouldn’t be allowed. For the Japanese abbreviation, I’ve definitely had to inform some people first that in English, JPN or JPNS is the better abbreviation. Then I might privately send them a link to a page that talks about where it derived from. After that, if they continued to use it, then I would’ve banned them. But since we can flag a post for the post author to see it, I think we’d be able to privately let them know.


I’ve added a specific mention about racial and ethnic slurs under ‘Be civil’. I do agree it calls for mention, but agree with @cat that intent matters too. Ultimately, it’s just a potential measure of bad intent.

  • Be civil. Don’t post anything that a reasonable person would consider offensive, abusive, or hate speech. Don’t knowingly use racial or ethnic slurs in a derogatory way.