• 25 Forum Posting Etiquette Tips

     

    Editor's Note: This article last updated September 21, 2015.

    What's the etiquette for posting to online forums? There are no clear rules, but below are some guidelines you may want to follow:

    1. Read the forums rules and guidelines before posting for the first time.
    2. Search the other posts to see if your topic is already covered.
    3. Use a meaningful title for your thread.
    4. Do not use a forum to promote your product, service or business.
    5. Be civil. Personal differences should be handled through email or IM and not through posts displayed to everyone.
    6. Stay on topic.
    7. Ignore spammers, respond to them personally and not through the board, or report them.
    8. Do not submit a post that requires readers to download a large attachment. Either explain the attachment or, better yet, provide a link to the information.
    9. Use plain text over HTML if you want your post to be readable by everyone.
    10. In order to be understood by most people, use correct spelling, grammar and avoid slang unless you know the word or phrase will be understood by other members.
    11. Do not double post (post the same message twice in one thread) or cross post (place the same message across several forums).
    12. Act in a give and take manner; help others as often as or more than you ask for help.
    13. Do not use all caps or SHOUT in your posts. In addition, one exclamation point is enough.
    14. When replying to a post, do not quote more from the previous post than you have to.
    15. Do not post new problems on someone else's thread and interrupt a topic of discussion.
    16. Do not use someone else’s thread for a private conversation.
    17. Most forums prohibit warez, cracks or illegal downloading of software and similar topics.
    18. Watch your sense of humor, posts may be read by people from a variety of backgrounds and ages.
    19. Do not use a huge and annoying signature, a modest signature is fine, moderators may remove large ones anyway.
    20. Do not post any information that you want private. Posts should not contain personal, identifiable information or content embarrassing to others.
    21. Do not post content that violates a copyright.
    22. Do not post ”empty” or useless responses, such as just ”lol” or ”cool.” Only post responses when you have something to contribute.
    23. Write concisely and do not ramble.
    24. Do not use words like ”urgent” or ”important” in your subject line, be patient.
    25. Do not chastise newbies.

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