Rationalise the policies/codes/rules/guidelines/clarifications

At the moment we have a Code of Conduct on the main CP site: https://www.classicpress.net/democracy/#code-of-conduct

And we have FAQs on this site: https://forums.classicpress.net/faq

And we are now getting more clarifications like this one: Policy on mentions of other CMSs/Website Builders

Should these be consolidated somehow?


Thanks. I agree this could use some cleanup. I think we actually need some larger, sustained efforts around cleaning up our various pages and documentation and rules, and making a new “Content” team to handle this would be a good idea.

For now, here is an easy way to improve this particular situation:

  1. Rename the “FAQ” page on the forums to “Forum Rules” - here’s how, in the admin settings:

I tried this briefly and confirmed it works, but I will leave the final decision to @wadestriebel:

  1. Link to any individual policies/rules from the “Forum Rules” page with an indication that users should read each of them (like the thread you mentioned).

  2. Link to the main “Code of Conduct” from the “Forum Rules” page, and vice versa.

About (3) I think Scott had the right instincts in keeping the main code of conduct short and limiting edits to only directors. We are here to make ClassicPress and to be good to each other while doing that, if we find that we are consistently failing at that then we have other issues and making the code of conduct and our policies more complicated is not the solution.

We also need to be careful if we restructure these pages since we have linked to https://www.classicpress.net/democracy/#code-of-conduct and other “sub-headings” from a lot of different places already.


Yes, this would be very good if it is feasible.

Yep, that’s also a very good solution.

That would work too, and I understand the need to keep this in place for linking reasons. But can someone explain what this section is about? It seems very general but then it mentions the “3 strikes” rule specifically… does that apply other places as well?

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This is a good question. Since this is on our “main” code of conduct I would think it is meant to apply everywhere. The forums do have an “official warning” facility, but Discourse isn’t our only communication channel, and I’m also not sure what options we have for tracking this, or even whether we’ve used it before.

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I guess Slack must have a way of banning people. So it could well be applicable more widely.

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I don’t like “Rules” but maybe “Forum Guidelines” or even just “Forum Code of Conduct” would be better.

3 strikes applies across Slack, Petitions, Forums, and any other communication channel we may have.

So I guess a question we need to answer, do “Forum Guidelines” apply across “all communication channels”?


My vote is for “Forum Guidelines”. We already have a “Code of Conduct” and we shouldn’t imply that the forum guidelines page supersedes that.

This probably doesn’t make sense because some parts of those guidelines are specific to the forums. We also want to make sure these policies don’t contradict each other in any way.

The main “Code of Conduct” should apply to all channels though. Again I think it’s right for the directors to make this decision, but here is a proposed revision to that last sentence:

- Please note: We have a three strikes policy — failure to
- adhere to our code of conduct will result in a minimum of 
- three warnings before a ban can be considered.
+ Please note: We have a "three strikes" policy — after
+ three official warnings from the Community team lead 
+ regarding failure to adhere to our Code of Conduct on any 
+ of our communication channels, an account ban may be 
+ considered.

Also, the “Show/Hide” buttons on some of the sections of https://www.classicpress.net/democracy/ are causing linking directly to the sections to not work properly. This sort of dynamically hidden content is also not great for other reasons including accessibility, I think I will change these sections to be shown by default… [Edit: Done]


Agree with @james on all that. Forum Guidelines is much better than FAQ.

And if it could include links to any “supplementary clarifications” that would ensure that they are findable.

One other thing that @wadestriebel mentioned is that if there is an issue with moderators it should taken up with the Community Team Lead. Where is this documented? I do think the process should be clearly set out if you want to question/dispute a moderating decision.


If the guidelines apply to the overall project (and not necessarily just here on the forums,) I’d use “Community Guidelines” for the verbiage.


They would need considerable rewriting for that. There are lots of references to forum, posts, topics, flags, etc.


My opinion: the Code of Conduct is what applies to the whole project. The Forum Guidelines should cover parts specific to the forums. Currently I think this is mostly default wording from the Discourse project but it is pretty good.


I didn’t know this link existed. If you are browsing a topic (or even the list of topics), especially if it is a long one, you can’t just go to the bottom to see it. Even CTRL+End doesn’t work.

I think Forum Guidelines needs to also be a link at the top, next to the word “Top”:

I’m sure many users don’t know about it. I would also like this to be more obvious.

I just noticed it is available using the “hamburger” menu, but FAQ is not something I would have seen a need to read.

Maybe if it said Forum Guidelines instead, I might have read it, but it still means users have to open the menu in the first place.

In forums, the Rules or Forum Guidelines are usually clearly visible as a dedicated menu link.

Yes, like in the Whirlpool forum…


The “Talk with a mod” is part of the whole transparency philosophy they have in place.

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Having re-read this thread, now knowing the link is not only under “Terms” but under the hamburger menu as well, this makes sense.

Discourse doesn’t have the interface of conventional forums, so most things are done via the hamburger menu.

I think it boils down to how important it is for users to read the forum guidelines. If we think it is very important, then it needs to be clearly visible and not hidden in a dropdown menu.

Of course, whether this is even possible is another matter.


I have updated the name of the FAQs to Forum Guidelines (note the link is still /faq/).

I still think these need a little fine tuning before we make any adjustments so I am holding off for now until I have a little more time to sit down and work through the wording.


After confirming with Wade and Michelle I made the change I suggested above to the main Code of Conduct. This answers this part of this thread:

Still a bit more cross-linking and clarification to do to make the rest more clear, we’ll keep you updated!


So we (Michelle, James and I) have made some further adjustments:

There are some more adjustments we would like to make in the future, but for now I think this a good start on cleaning up our Code of Conduct/Forum Guidelines.


That’s excellent @wadestriebel and @james - certainly makes it all link together nicely and everything is readily available. Thank you.