General FAQ

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Cerium, Dec 5, 2017.

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  1. Cerium

    Cerium Project Lead Administrator Original Poster

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    ResetEra Frequently Asked Questions

    Last Revised January 6, 2018.

    Introduction

    Welcome to ResetEra, a place for video game enthusiasts, industry members and press to come together and discuss their favorite hobby.

    Our goal is to create an inviting bonfire that inspires people to have passionate discussions, build bonds with different kinds of people from all over the world, and in general have a good time in a moderated environment. We want ResetEra to be the central hub for people who love video games and everything surrounding them. We put a lot of value in being fair, transparent, and reasonable with our moderation. We want you to feel safe without feeling oppressed.

    This document will outline some of the policies and guidelines that we’ve been working on to make ResetEra a great forum for discussion. Before you begin, please read this Message from the Staff to understand the values behind our founding and how they inform everything that we do.

    Please keep in mind that while we’ve put great effort into making this guide as detailed and specific as we can, it is not possible to foresee or enumerate every behavior that might require moderation.


    How to participate

    I. Application

    To participate, you'll need to register with your email address. Please understand that only non-disposable email accounts are permitted in order to grow a manageable and transparent community and also to keep the amount of potential spam accounts as low as possible. During the application process, you will be required to accept our User Agreement which sets forth ResetEra‘s Terms of Service. You may review both the User Agreement and our Privacy Policy by clicking their respective links.

    II. Activation

    After you've successfully registered your account on ResetEra, the activation process begins. This means that the ResetEra staff will manually check your registration. Once approved, you'll be ready to actively participate in discussions. Account approval will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Please note that the activation process is being done manually, and that it can take some time until your account is activated. Please refrain from contacting staff members about the approval process for your account outside of the forum. If you have any questions concerning the status of your approval, please contact us only at [email protected]. Note that due to the large volume of emails we receive and variances in staff availability, we may not be able to reply to your email immediately. We appreciate your patience throughout this process.

    III. Junior Status

    After your account is approved, you will begin as a Junior Member. This is your chance to settle in, get a feel for the forum, and demonstrate your capacity for civil discourse. Moderation may be stricter during this period, but to discourage elitism there will be no public indication of Junior Member status. Junior Members are not able to create new threads. In order to move from being a Junior Member to a full Member, two conditions must be met: (1) 60 days must have passed since your account was approved and (2) you must have made at least 100 posts. Once these two conditions are met, your account will automatically be upgraded to Member status.

    IV. One Account Only

    Each user is allowed only one account. If you are found to have created multiple accounts out of benign misunderstanding, you will be asked to pick one and the others will be closed. If you are found to have created multiple accounts in bad faith, such as for ban evasion or trolling, all of your accounts will be subject to an automatic permanent ban.

    V. Verification (Optional)

    For members working in the press or the entertainment industries, we offer “verified accounts.“ A verified account is identifiable by a 'Verified' icon in your profile. While we understand that anonymity may be desirable for myriad reasons, we would like to encourage you to verify yourself so that you may better engage with our audience of ResetEra users.

    You can check out our Verification FAQ for more information on this program, including how to get verified yourself.


    Member Etiquette

    ResetEra as a forum and as a community values inclusivity and seeks to provide a welcoming space for all members to come together to discuss video games and more. ResetEra does not tolerate behavior or language that is racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, or otherwise maliciously exclusionary with regard to identity. Our mission is to foster an environment that brings people together in open dialogue. We might not see each other face to face, but behind each username is another human being who may have a different background. Accordingly, the Cardinal Rule for using ResetEra’s website and services is to be mindful of the above and to enter dialogue in good faith.

    The ResetEra User Agreementsets forth a non-exclusive list of prohibited activities. ResetEra reserves the exclusive right to use its discretion in taking any action against a user who violates the User Agreement, from account suspension (temporary banning) to account termination (permanent banning).

    I. Posting Etiquette

    Please be polite: Please be respectful and polite when posting in threads. This includes when addressing other users and when posting about the topic at hand. You can post in a thread without making it personal or insulting other users. Impolite posting and using improper grammar and spelling is frowned upon here. Consistently low quality posts can lead to a ban.

    Use text options responsibly: We presently allow posters access to a variety of text options including size, color, and font. Please do not abuse these to make obnoxious or visually distracting replies. Please note that the color red is exclusively reserved for Moderators and Administrators when they are posting in an official capacity. Misusing red text will result in a warning.

    Users and creators: As a ResetEra user, it is important to understand that video games are being created by different developers working with different budgets and technology on different systems for different publishers who try to strike a lucrative balance between business and art. Of course, it is frustrating that a highly anticipated project turns out to be under your expectations, but remember that there are actual people working on these games that have a life outside of video games and are passionate about what they do. Claiming that an entire studio is "lazy" is not only disrespectful but also very naive and uninformed. If we are lucky we get to learn about the stories behind these products, but other than that it helps to understand that this is an industry that is fueled by money, sweat and passion. No matter how disappointed you are, please try to understand people from the industry and don't pin anybody down on one project that didn't go as you wished.

    The same goes for people who are covering the video games industry: vilifying an entire media outlet for any reason is typically unhelpful. It is crucial to understand that these people share a similar high passion for this hobby as you do and try their best to do their jobs. These outlets are not monoliths but groups of people that keep changing over the years. None of them are perfect and while reasoned discussion is always welcome, try to refrain from dismissing a website or magazine for petty reasons.

    Do not argue in bad faith: Honest dissent and debate is generally welcome. However, we do not welcome disingenuous arguments, deliberately ignoring or refusing to acknowledge counterarguments, or arguing for no reason than to upset other members. If your contributions to a discussion are clearly unproductive or lead in circles, it’s time to stop.

    Read beyond the headline: There is no prize for being the first person to comment on something. Instead of reading headlines, please take your time to read the snippets and the content in question. Don't let your own laziness potentially make you look like a fool.

    No drive-by posting: Do not come into a thread, write something purposefully provocative, and bail out. We'd suggest either making a solid argument or ignoring a thread altogether if you have nothing to contribute. We would also like to remind users not to derail threads and post about topics which are not related to the content posted in the OP.

    No console wars: Everybody has their platforms and genres of preference and it's completely fine if somebody doesn't share a similar taste as you. Don't be an annoying megaphone for multi-billion dollar corporations that only care about you buying their products first and foremost. Don't be bitter about multi-platform announcements. Don't be bitter if a system you like sells less than the system you don't like.

    Port-begging: Every time new hardware releases and games are launching between two hardware cycles, people often 'beg' for ports of those games for that new hardware by either derailing threads or creating threads. It is not okay to simply complain and derail threads. Instead, make a good argument to why there should be a X version for Y game.

    It's okay to not post: It is fine to see a thread about a subject that you absolutely don't care about and to not post in it. It's absolutely fine to let people celebrate tiny successes without dropping a snarky comment between posts. We are not asking of you to not be critical, but to be aware that your opinion is just one among many and not necessary for every single thread. Please note that the forum has an ignore feature that you can use if you do not want to see a certain user’s posts.

    Take a break: From time to time it is necessary to step away for a few minutes or hours if a discussion you participate in gets too heated or you feel like you can't contribute anymore. Keep taking care of yourself and don't lose yourself between dozens of posts and threads. It is also helpful to remember that spending too much time on ResetEra alone can create a bubble in your mind about what gaming is and what it isn't. Be aware that there is a world outside of it.

    Rumors and Leaks: Posting rumors and leaks from external websites is allowed but we ask users to use common sense when doing so. Do not post rumors and leaks from random blogs with no track record. If you believe the rumor you’re reading couldn’t possibly be true then it is best not to post it here.

    If you wish to post a leak or rumor yourself on ResetEra you should contact an Administrator so that we can review the information first. Please note that we will not officially endorse leaks posted on the forum and users who knowingly post incorrect information will be banned.

    Spoiler and hidden tags: Many posters like to experience entertainment without knowing what to expect from it. This is something that everyone should strive to accommodate. For example if you are in a thread about a recently released game and want to discuss information that could only have been acquired by playing it, please hide that information behind tags. Do not include such spoilers in thread titles.

    Spoiler sensitivity, however, cannot be allowed to stifle discussion of actual news. If information is publicized as part of promotional material, or otherwise announced through official channels, it is fair game.

    Our forum software allows you to clearly title the contents of your spoiler. Whenever possible and appropriate, please use this feature so that members will know exactly what you are hiding behind the tags. If a thread title has the word ‘spoiler’ in the title then you do not need to use spoiler tags in that thread and you can assume that discussion in that thread will revolve around said spoiler.

    II. New Thread Etiquette

    Show some effort: It’s wonderful that you want to start a discussion, but being the Original Poster carries some responsibility to start things off on the right foot. If you’re going to create a thread, try to include more content and care than one or two short sentences. Consider whether the thread will generate good discussion, and scrutinize any sources you decide to cite. Try not to create new threads based on tweets, jokes, conspiracy theories, poor sources or yes/no questions. Consistently low quality threads may lead to your thread making privileges being revoked.

    Threads LTTP/RTTP threads: LTTP stands for Late-To-The-Party and means that you are catching up to a product whose release window and discussion you've completely missed. Please do not create a LTTP thread for a game that just came out one or two months ago; use the game OT (official topic) instead if it's not too old. RTTP stands for Return-To-The-Party and means that you want to revisit the discussion about a certain product. Similar rules as LTTP.

    Content threads: Please do not create threads that have illegal links or magazine scans in them. If you create a thread based on an article, please do not copy the entire article and use snippets instead and a link to the article. Respect that these are written by people who make their living with those clicks, no matter if you agree and disagree with the premise. Also, properly represent these articles and don't spin them to create a narrative to your liking. If you create a thread based on a video, please create a short summary of it or write down your own opinion on why people should watch it (this of course isn't necessary for new game trailers though additional info is always helpful to have).

    Reaction threads: In our experience, these lead to nothing but pages and pages of emotionally fueled hot-takes that mostly resemble spam rather than actual material of value. Instead, use the relevant event and announcement threads for your instant reactions to keep them in one place.

    Review threads: By creating a review thread for something we expect you to be active and keep updating the original post with more information instead of adding just the first few reviews and then bail out. Please refrain from creating a review thread if you are unable to do so. Similar to content threads, we expect you to share a snippet of the review, a score/final verdict and a link to it. You can also add the OpenCritic and MetaCritic scores.

    Official Topics (OTs): OTs for products need to be claimed first in the specific thread for OTs (which exist for both gaming and offtopic). You can design your OT however you want but we'd like to suggest that you should include some basic information about the product (see below). The format for an OT thread title is usually <product name> |OT| <subtitle>.

    OTs for games should not go up more than 72 hours before launch. A strong OT should contain the following:

    • Release Date

    • Developer

    • Publisher

    • Platform(s)

    • Price(s)

    New OTs may be posted to and remain in their respective Video Games or EtcetEra sections for one month before being moved to the Hangouts.

    Announcement threads: If something gets announced and you decide to make a thread for it, please try to include as much and as precise information as possible. If nothing is available, you can still make a thread and add information later using the edit feature. Don't worry if multiple threads are being created about the same announcement: the ResetEra team will merge these threads[3] .

    Event threads: Event threads should be created on the day the event starts and include schedules, stream links and some basic information. Those things should be included; the rest is up to you.

    No list threads: A list thread is a thread that encourages replies that largely or completely take the form of lists. These threads tend not to generate much if any actual discussion or member interaction, and therefore are usually closed. Voting threads generally fall under this category as well. If you wish to create a voting thread, please contact an Administrator to seek an exception beforehand.

    III. Not Safe For Work

    Not safe for network TV: Do not post any material that would be too explicit to be aired on network television. Many of our members are from the United States and have a good grasp of what this means and will be able to tell you where that line is. If you have any doubts, contact a moderator before posting.

    Public indecency: Do not post any material featuring characters wearing clothing that would get a real person arrested for public indecency.

    No underage sexualisation: Do not post images, artwork, figurines, or any other material, no matter how stylized or fictional, which clearly fetishizes or sexualises characters under the age of 18. This restriction also uniquely extends to discussions; do not condone, defend, or otherwise excuse the sexualisation of children.

    Be considerate: Many of our members browse this website from their workplaces and material that excessively highlights or focuses on sexual or secondary sexual characteristics might be a bad look for them. Try to be tasteful and considerate if the option exists.

    IV. Other Disallowed Content

    Copyrighted material and piracy: Do not post copyrighted material such as magazine scans. This policy also applies to copying and pasting entire articles or reports for redistribution on ResetEra. Linking to piracy websites or encouraging piracy is also prohibited.

    We have more information on this policy and DMCA takedowns in our terms of service.

    Self-Promotion & Spam: Do not post new threads featuring links to products or services that you have a direct involvement in. Users are welcome and encouraged to post in already existing threads about a product or service that they are involved in so that they may engage with the community. Please note that this policy also applies to verified users on ResetEra.

    Spam of any kind is not allowed on ResetEra. This refers to malware and phishing content, referral links, self-promotion and abuse of the post or private message system.

    Banned websites and sources: In rare cases, we may ban certain websites or sources from being posted on ResetEra. The reason for each ban may vary but in general we will ban a site if they are an unreliable source of information or if they have a history of attempting to self-promote on our site. We ask that you not post content from these websites. You will know if a website is banned as the link will be replaced by asterisks.

    For more information on why a particular website has been banned, you may contact a moderator.

    Hate speech, bullying, harassment and doxing: We have a zero-tolerance policy on hate speech, bullying, harassment and doxing. Any users found to be involved in this behaviour will be banned.


    Moderation and Bans

    Our international staff is made up of people with a variety of different backgrounds and experiences. To offer consistent moderation, we apply universal staff guidelines that are nevertheless flexible enough to evolve with the times. Every staff member has to follow the same rules as the rest of the forum and is expected to behave professionally when acting as a representative of ResetEra.

    On ResetEra, we aim to be as transparent as possible about the moderation of the site, especially when it comes to the banning of accounts. If you have any questions about our moderation, please do not risk a thread derail and instead feel free to contact the Mod Team Captains Selina and Rowlf.

    There is a Complete Staff Roster available to the public that is regularly maintained and kept up to date.

    I. Warnings

    The majority of users on our website will never break a rule outlined in the FAQ and terms of service. We understand that some users may break a rule during a heated discussion or as a one off. We have a public warning system in place that allows us to warn the user for this behavior and communicate to our entire user base what sort of behavior is acceptable and what is not acceptable.

    If a user breaks a rule they will receive a public warning first in most cases. A moderator will add a red bar above the user’s post with text that contains a clear reason as to why the user was warned. The user that is warned may also receive a PM from a moderator which explains why the warning was issued. We hope that users will read all public warning messages they come across to understand how best to use the website.

    Please note that repeated warnings will lead to a ban. In some cases, we may choose to ban a user without a warning first.

    II. Banned Users

    If a user continues to break the rules, especially after being warned in the past, we may temporarily ban the user. The length of the ban will depend on the user’s moderation history and the number of warnings that they have received in the past. For most users, we will start out with a 24-hour ban. We understand that sometimes what users need is a break, and so we want to give users the chance to learn from their mistakes so they can come back later with an improved mindset.

    In the interest of transparency, we will also keep the ban reason public for each user. You can find the public ban reason in the red bar at the top of the offending post. The ban reason text will contain a clear reason as to why the user was banned as well as the duration of the ban. Please note that users who continue to break the rules will receive longer bans.

    In certain cases, we may permanently ban a user. We will do this if a user continues to break the rules after multiple warnings or bans. We may also permanently ban users if they intentionally sign up to break our rules or violate the ToS.

    III. Report System

    We encourage users to take advantage of the report system we have in place. The report system allows you to report posts, private messages or users that break any of the forum rules and/or violate the terms of service. You can do this by clicking the report button on the top right of a user’s post next to the post number. Please ensure you enter an accurate reason for why you are reporting the post.

    Due to the real-time nature of ResetEra, moderators are unable to review every single post on the forum. Therefore, the report button is an extremely useful tool for users and moderators as it will allow us to respond to posts or threads where a moderator is required soon after the report is received. Please note that you can report your own posts too. This is useful in certain cases, such as requiring a moderator to change the title of your thread.

    Please use the report button responsibly. Ensure that you have a valid reason for reporting a post and make sure to articulate this clearly in the text box. Do not send reports just because you do not like a certain user or because you disagree with a valid opinion. Do not threaten another user with the report system. Abuse of the report system violates our rules, and will lead to a warning or ban.
     
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