FORUM RULES & GUIDELINES
Online communications come with their own unique challenges, so please read through so you can settle in with ease.
So yeah….THIS is fun reading eh? And I know you have nothing better to do right now than read through it all. Okay, I get it, it’s a lot, but it is important. At least peruse through it now, but print it out and read through the rest of it later…but not too much later because you don’t want the mean nasty evil admin emailing you when it becomes obvious you didn’t actually read much of it.
- You must be at least 13 years of age to become a member.
- You must be 18 or older to post any photos of yourself. (posting photos of your rabbits, is of course, okay!)
- Members under 18 cannot use their first and/or last name anywhere in the forum. Minors cannot post their age.
- Members over 18 cannot use their first AND last name anywhere in the forum. One OR the other can be used if so desired.
- You must represent yourself only. You cannot represent an organization, service, business or group of any kind. Exception: Rabbit Rescues and like organizations can be represented, but can only post in the Rabbit Rescue Section.
REPORT A POST or MEMBER: After reading through the rules, if you see another member breaking these rules, it will help us if you alert the BinkyBunny Leader Team. You do this by clicking on the "Alert" icon which is available on the top right side of every post. When you click on the ALERT button it will take you to a window where you can submit some information. It will allow you report anonymously or with your user name. (though your name will never be mentioned or inferred to in the Forum regardless - you will always remain anonymous within the Forum). You will also have an opportunity to add comments before you do a Final "send" for the ALERT. Once you Send the ALERT, it will go to BinkyBunny Admin and BinkyBunny Forum Leaders.
- Advice Received in Forum - Our limitations and advice to you in taking advice from this forum
- Forum Etiquette - We're a Snooty-Free zone -- check out the rules about this.
- Content of Your Posts - Covers photos of yourself, sneaky advertising, breeding, vet referrals and much more.
- Profiles, Avatars & Signatures - Info about graphic size limitations, what's allowed and what's frowned upon.
- Rule Updates - Just a little ditty about updating our rules.
1. ADVICE RECEIVED IN FORUM:
Members range from all levels of experience. Leaders are not vets or behaviorists. We all may use our own experience and knowledge to help find solutions and offer advice, however it is YOUR responsibility to assess the information given to you. The advice given here should never be taken as a replacement to your own vet's care but as additional options to consider and discuss with your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.
We reserve the right to delete a post/ advice that we feel will put an animal at immediate risk.
Emergency/Urgent Situations: We CANNOT help you in case of an emergency or urgent care. If it is an emergency, you MUST seek vet care. We cannot replace vet care. If you are unsure if vet care is needed, then we can only give you our opinion, and if we say seek vet care immediately, then PLEASE DO NOT ASK FOR ADDITIONAL MEDICAL TYPE OF ADVICE unless it's about locating and/or getting your animal to the vet or about how to keep the animal alive DURING transport to your vet. If you are seeking "additional" information regarding the vet care's advice, that is fine, but again, we cannot replace vet care. Also, NEVER risk your animal's life by waiting for an answer from us.
2. FORUM ETIQUETTE:
BinkyBunny is a Snarky-Snooty Free Zone
A. Be Respectful & Kind: No Flames Allowed. Posts that are disrespectful, and/or belittle, ridicule, embarrass, criticize, or threaten other members will not be tolerated. This does not mean that you cannot voice an opposing viewpoint, but if you do so, please express your viewpoint without relying on the above tactics. A good way to express an opposing view point is to make sure you stick with what you would do, why you believe the way you do, but don't pick apart why someone else is wrong. Know the difference between a personal opinion and a personal attack. **It is also important that the person reading (being on the receiving end) of a different point understand the difference as well.
B. We Do Not Tolerate Poor Manners and Snide, Snotty, snarky Snooty Remarks:
(You know, those annoying little things that get under people's skin) Stuff like starting posts with...."um...yeah....that's not the way you do it." That "um" or "uh" followed by some correction is highly irritating. It has that rude ick factor that needs to be left at the door. That's the kind of stuff that drives us crazy, so don't do it. (for reference, other examples to stay away from: “sorry, but...” and “excuse me, but...” and any other snitty post starters will not be tolerated. If you want to help someone understand a possible error in diet, care, or whatever, find a way to do it that isn't the written equivalent of an eye-roll.
If you don't agree with someone, that's fine. You don't have to, but agree to disagree and don't get defensive and snooty about it.
If you can't treat people like they are intelligent, then don't post. We all are here to learn, and there are many of you that can educate, but be sure to not come off as a know-it-all by offering advice in such a way that belittles and would embarrass the other person
C. Questions Disguised as Criticisms: Example: "Why didn't you just...." Now, of course, sometimes these are legit questions to figure out if something may need to be done diffferently, but c'mon, you know when it's snitty.
D. Innocent Sarcasm: It's okay to use sarcasm in genuine jest, not as a snooty reply - just becareful when using sarcasm even in an innocent funny way, as it can come off as rude even when you did not intend it that way. Be sure to read your post thoroughly and use plenty of emoticons to relay tone to avoid misunderstandings.
E. How to Deal with Disagreements and Personality Conflicts: It is extremely easy for miscommunications to happen within an online text format. Without tones and body language to guide us, text can often relay a different message to us than what the author actually intended. If you feel you could have misunderstood, then just calmly ask the person to clarify. If it escalates, please contact a Forum Leader. (If the complaint is about a Forum Leader, then contact BinkyBunny)
If you feel positive that someone was outright rude and/or if you have a particular problem with a post, reply or a member, please contact a Forum Leader. (or contact BinkyBunny). Do not start or engage in a rude disagreement online, (even if you feel the person has antagonized you first) . Just copy and paste the post to an email to BinkyBunny, and provide the link. Do not ONLY link it as the post can be changed by the member later. You will remain anonymous.
F. Debates: Let's keep this board light! Light discussions and differing opinions about rabbit welfare is fine, but please refrain from getting into debates about God, Government, Animal Rights rights in general (eg. like anti-vivisection aka: for science/medicine, rabbits as food, and about controversial highly charged subjects and groups) or any serious ethical debate.
***Issues Surrounding Adopt vs Buy: Encouraging and educating about adoption is fine, but do not debate about it or put someone down for their choice to do otherwise. If our forum is scary to people who choose another route, then they will just look elsewhere, (or nowhere), to learn rabbit care. One of our goals here is to provide a safe resource that helps owners find solutions to challenging issues, whether it be about cost, health, behavior. It's those challenges and unexpected issues that are many times the reasons that bunnies are given up. So in this format, we can do our part in preventing abandonment by focusing on the individual's responsibility to the commitment they make, regardless of where their bunny comes from.
G. Anger Issues: We’re human, we can get bent!! But if you're having a problem keeping your anger under control, step back, breathe and don't come back until you have calmed down. But put this all in perspective - This is supposed to be a fun bunny board, not a battleground.
3. CONTENT OF YOUR POSTS:
A. Source your quotes: If you quote anything directly from another website, be sure to provide the source name and/or link.
B. Members that imply Abuse/Neglect of their own animals: It is illegal in many Countries and in many U.S. States not to provide food, water, shelter and needed vet care for Rabbits. However, the details of this varies quite a bit from City to City, County to County, Country to Country, etc. As much as these posts may anger us, please refrain from lashing out so we can keep the member active so we can either help the person provide better care or report them if need be. (Use the ALERT so we can become aware and not scare the member away). We may be furious with the person, but the animals won't be helped if the person leaves. With that said, some people will do what they want regardless, and at a certain point, we can only do what what we can do, and we must refocus and move on to help others. Also, some people may come here to pull a prank or joke by trying to rile up a rabbit community, so keep your cool.
C. Rehoming Rabbits : Our forum cannot be used as a resource to rehome your bunny. The Rescue section is meant for Rescues and Shelters, and Fosters from a Rescue/Shelter only. However, you can ask about how to deal with some of the challenges that are making you consider rehoming. Our main goal will be to find solutions so you can keep your bunny. If you are an individual who may be in a situation where you are not sure what you should do with a challenging situation - moving, new baby, busy schedule, etc, we can help you find solutions in the Q & A Forum.
Craigslist Ads: Please don't repost or copy and paste, or link to Craigslist ads that are focused on individuals who are looking to rehome their bunnies. If you spot a Craigslist ad that grabs your attention and tugs at your heartstrings, you can always contact the poster and offer up this site as a resource for education.
D. Discussions of Accidental Litters, Breeding, Meat Rabbits: Discussions involving intentional breeding (of any animal) and meat rabbits are not allowed: IF your bunny is unexpectedly pregnant, then we are more than happy to help out and/or refer you to experts that can. Though we promote rescue, we are not an anti-breeder site. To find out why breeding discussions are not allowed see our FAQ section http://binkybunny.com/BUNNYINFO/FAQ/tabid/81/Default.aspx (scroll to question 3).
• Accidental Litter: Sometimes this happens and we will do our best to help the pregnant doe and/or babies by providing advice to the best of our knowledge. However, posting future baby photos will be prohibited unless it is in regards to a health or behavior question.
• Posts that imply intentional breeding are not allowed: Posts that mention pregnancy, new litters, kits, or babies may be considered as "intentional" breeding, if it is not clarified as accidental. *NOTE: Repeat accidental litters from the same person will fall into this implied category as well.(regardless if it was truly accidental over and over) . Again, a surprise litter that someone needs help with, and they continue to mention their kits' progress is OKAY, but mentioning brand new kits in a way that implies new litters over and over is NOT OKAY.
• Repeat Litter Exceptions: Certified Rescues can post about repeat litters. Rescues many times are subject to getting rabbits in that are already pregnant. They are allowed to use our forum to post about it in the RESCUE SECTION and use the forum as a resource for adoption.
D-1 Baby bunny photos are allowed under these circumstances:
1. This is your own baby bunny that are planning to buy/adopt/acquire OR you already bought, adopted or acquired. (but not through your own breeding)
2. You are foster, volunteer, or work for a certified rescue/shelter. Post in the Rescue Section only and provide the shelter name & link to the shelter in your first post. Keep updates to a single thread.
Posting photos of the babies just to share the cute faces will not be allowed except for above circumstances. The reason for this is it draws people in to our site, via the search engines, to the subject of babies, and many times breeding. Which we are not equipped to handle.
E. When Posting About Animal Abuse or a Heart-Wrenching Incident:
Though many of us want to help with animal welfare, or may want to share a painful loss, no one likes to be shocked with some horrible image that may be burned into their memory, so please be sensitive when posting graphic information. Whether it is something that happened to your animal or a news story that you want people to be aware of and help with, please follow these guidelines:
• Do not post graphic and disturbing descriptions or photos of a suffering animal and/or animal abuse directly in your post. You can provide links to a news story or to more information.
• Please post a warning at the top of your post when describing details in your post or posting links that will be disturbing when clicked on: Example of Warning to use: CONTAINS GRAPHIC/DESCRIPTIVE MATERIAL. THOSE WITH SENSITIVITIES USE CAUTION BEFORE READING FURTHER
F. DO NOT POST, EMAIL or MESSAGE ADVERTISEMENTS, PROMOTIONS OF STORES, PRODUCTS,SERVICES OR PERSONAL WEBSITES.
THIS INCLUDES CONTESTS, DRAWINGS, VOTE REQUEST. (unless for non-profit - otherwise it is a promotional tool which is against the rules)
• Members cannot use the board to sell or promote. This also means if you sell something/make money on your blog or personal or social site, you cannot post about the site or link to it. You can put a link in your profile only, as long as the products you sell are not competitive with the BinkyBunny store (products for rabbits). If the products you sell are competitive, posting the link in your profile is at the descretion of BinkyBunny. Please message BinkyBunny first.
**If you are an affiliate or receive a benefit (store credit, cash, etc,) you cannot promote the site, products or services from the associated site.
Personal Website/blogs/social network pages: As long as you are not selling or making money from your site, you can add the URL to your profile, and refer others to your profile page when you are in posting in the forum.
• Spam via the BinkyBunny message center will not be tolerated: This can result in immediate banning as well as a report/complaint to your own email provider.
• NO Back Door Advertising: Which means -- Becoming a member to get friendly with everyone, seek out posts to promote or bring up subjects that then would get everyone geared toward your goal then to overtly or slyly sell or promote through posts, signature and/or profiles. Don't do this. We know this sales technique well as we deal with this alot. We don't appreciate our members being used in this way. This can result in immediate account deletion.
• A brand new member cannot post about a product or service unless they are legitimately responding to a post that warrants it. (However, if it begins to become repetitive, as if a new member is just responding to in order to sell, it may be viewed as promotion and it will be subject to deletion.) So to prevent people from clogging the forum with promotional usage, selling stuff, etc, do not specifically name retail stores, products, or promotions or provide links, or anything that could be seen as selling or promoting products.
1. It is acceptable to respond to another member's questions or comments if discussing a product or in need of a product. (however, if you are responding only to promote or it seems to be repetitive and just a way to promote by finding a several pertaining "subjects" then it will considered advertising.) You can not respond promoting your own site or a site you receive a financial benefit from.
2. long-term frequent member wants to share their experience of products and services. (Repetitive behavior of this though can result in post deletion if considered "backdoor" advertising.)
3. BinkyBunny will allow information about BinkyBunny Store products and promotions to be posted. So how come WE get to do it and we don't allow others to? This site survives on store profits. It's the only thing that keeps us going. We are not a huge money-making company, nor will we post or allow obnoxious spam type of messages. We just want to be able to maintain and continue to improve this site. (Our heart is in it, but we need our pocketbook to pay for it). So posts about BinkyBunny products and promotions will be allowed as long as it is posted in a non-salesy low key way.
4 . If you are a rescue promoting your site and/blog only, and not promoting products that are competitive with our store, then you can post your blog in the Rescue Section.
G. Do Not Ask Directly for Money/Fees/Donations: (This includes rescues and humane causes but please see “exceptions” regarding this below)
• To prevent BinkyBunny from becoming a haven for money solicitation, do not ask for money/donations/fees directly.
• An individual on behalf of themselves is not allowed to ask for money….ever. (and that includes links to the individualssite where money is requested)
• LEGITIMATE RESCUES and HUMANE CAUSES Exception: You may discuss adoptables, events, and emergency situations where financial help would be urgently needed. Only the world "help" can be used, but you cannot directly ask for donations or money anywhere on forum or in the chat, but you CAN provide a link to your own site for more information which may have a donation link on your own site's page, but you cannot directly link from BinkyBunny to paypal or other pay system.
H. Negative Reviews/Comments of Pet Stores, Vet Hospitals, Individual Vets and other individuals: So, you saw horrible conditions at a pet store, your vet was terrible, and you had to deal with the rudest receptionist. Those things are monumentally frustrating! We understand, but for your own legal protection keep actual names of individuals and businesses out of your posts. According to the Communications Decency Act, you, the individual poster in an online forum, is legally responsible for your statements, and so if a company or individual wants to pursue a lawsuit against you, they can track you down (IF a court orders it) by your IP address (even if it changes).
I. No Witch Hunts: Do not use BinkyBunny to persecute and/or to recruite others to contact a person, business or group you disagree with.
It is not uncommon to come across people, a business or group, on the net or in person, who concern or even outrage us with a differing belief system - especially when it comes to how animals are treated. (If there is abuse and/or neglect, please report this asap to the proper authorities.)
IT IS OKAY TO ask for advice on how to handle the situation, but keep out of your forum post any identifying information that would allow people to locate the other party, either in person or online. This kind of thing can get ugly fast, and though the original intention may have been to create positive change, it can turn into a witch hunt full of hostilities If you want to try and change how someone treats their rabbit(s) and you think BinkyBunny.com can help, invite them to visit our site. If they then want to seek advice and suggestions, they can reach out via our forum and a respectful discussion will be welcomed.
J. Respect the Privacy of Your Fellow Members: Please do not post information about another member that the member, themselves, has not already posted about on BinkyBunny. This includes information that they may have posted on other sites. So for example if a BB member posts a classified ad on Craigslist, or posts in another forum additional information that s/he did not choose to provide in the BinkyBunny forum, please respect their choice and do not provide links to or repost that information in the forum. If something causes you concern, we ask that you email your fellow BinkyBunny member privately via our Message Center.
K. Vet Information & Vet Referrals: It is okay to refer a particular vet when someone asks for it or if it is subject related. Even if someone posts their vet or facility recommendation to you, it is still your responsibility to screen the vet and the facilities. BinkyBunny.com and the person that gives you the vet reference is not responsible for what happens in the referred veterinarian's care. That is between you and the veterinarian. So always be sure to check out any referred vet for yourself.
L. Posting Information and Pictures of Yourself
• You must be 18 or older to post pictures of yourself.
• Take caution when posting pictures of yourself and your family. The net may seem anonymous, but you must be careful with how much information you put out there. When posting pictures, becareful not to reveal too much personal information. For example - be sure that in pictures, that in the background there is not a house address, a mailbox, car license plate number, etc. The same goes for when you reveal information in posts. If you say you live alone in one post, and then later down the line you give the city you live, then later you talk about the places you go - Combined with your picture this can make who you are and where you live too revealing. So have fun, don't get paranoid, but just take precautions.
M. BinkyBunny Store or Product Complaints will be deleted: BB Members and the Forum community are separate from the BB store. If you have a complaint or problem with the BinkyBunny Store or with a product sold in the store, please resolve it directly with us by contacting us via email or by phone instead of using the forum. BB store Customer Service is a NUMBER ONE priority and so your complaints will never go unheard. The store will never sell a product with numerous complaints and problems. If that begins to happen, the product would be discontinued. Even for unique or rare complaints, we will always try and make it right. So give us a chance to do the right thing before you attempt to use forum as a place for your complaints.
4. SIGNATURES, AVATARS, DISPLAY NAMES AND PROFILES:
- Do not create graphics for your Display Name or as part of your Display Name. Text only.
- To keep signatures, avatars and profiles from becoming promotional billboards, do not post business names or brand names, or their images in them.
- Do not post links or website addresses anywhere within your signature, avatar and/or profile, unless it's within BinkyBunny. It's okay for the photos/images to be linked to your photo file sharing site like Photobucket, etc.
- If you have “your own personal” website or host type site like myspace, facebook or livejournal, there is actually a URL section in your profile to post this.
There are only three exceptions to this to posting web addresses, but ONLY within your profile:
- If you have your own website that is a business and want to offer a link or name - that will be allowed under the discretion of BinkyBunny Staff.
- You can state the name or site address of where you got your bunny You just cannot link it.
- In your bio section when discussing family, hobbies, where you volunteer, and work, you can include a web address where relative.(but if it sounds like a sales pitch, this will now be allowed)
SIGNATURE SIZE: Personal pictures and graphics should be no larger than 500 pixels wide and 100 pixels high. Do not post distracting Siggy's - Ones with movement will be deleted.
AVATAR – Personal pictures and graphics only that still adhere to the content requirements above. Size will automatically be adjusted. .Do not post distracting Avatars - Ones with movement will be deleted.
5. RULE UPDATES:
As the board traffic increases and new issues arise, guidelines and rules may be modified. No grandfather rights will apply. Just check here periodically. We do post "Modified w/ an asterick that will then lead you to the updated info", so you can find out what is new since the last time you checked. .
We have sole discretion of what is allowed regarding posts, threads, avatar, signatures and all profile info.
Defiance of these rules can result in you being banned from the forum.
If you have any questions regarding the Rules and Guidelines, email BinkyBunny.