Blue Collar Black Book is like a large house party. House parties need to have a few rules to make sure that nobody gets badly hurt or has to call the cops. Being cool about it and following the house rules makes it more fun for everyone involved. We don't mind when you show up drunk at 3AM, but we do mind if you start breaking the furniture and picking fights.
If you don't follow the house rules, we'll ask you to leave for a little bit. Blue Collar is there to help work it out with you. Following this one suggestion will help the process out immensely: Be polite. Write a draft letter to get the frustration out of the way first. Then write a second letter explaining what happened and send that one instead. The person in the position to help with an issue is more likely to do so if they aren't abused. Chances are that whatever went wrong can be righted, so keep that in mind during correspondence.
It does need to be said that repeated and extreme violations of Blue Collar's posting rules will result in a permanent posting ban. We don't want to ban users from participating on the site - but it can and will happen if we have to. A site ban is 100% avoidable by following some simple rules. Remember that these rules are non-negotiable and Blue Collar will not embark on a protracted debate over so-called grey areas. These rules apply to link submissions AND user profiles as well. To that end, here they are:
Don't repost deleted content/links.
Don't post NSFW (Not Safe For Work) images or unlabeled NSFW links.
Don't post graphic images or links to graphic content.
Don't post repetitively.
Don't encourage others to perform illegal acts.
Don't post hate speech.
Don't post broken images/links.
Don't post private/contact information no matter how easily obtained.
Don't troll/harass other Blue Collar Members.
Don't troll/harass Blue Collar or its maintainers.
Don't discuss bans in the threads.
Don't try to make the thread discussions all about you -aka Attention Whoring.
Don't attempt to hack, flood, DoS, DDoS, or otherwise compromise Blue Collar Black Book.
Don't abuse the submission queue.
Don't post illegal content of any kind.
These rules are basic, common sense stuff. The following list is the longer version which is boring and detailed because people we ban ask us to make it this way. To reiterate, Blue Collar will not enter a protracted debate over these rules. If a particular item isn't explicitly listed in excruciating detail here, it still falls under the general "don't be a dick" rule.
Images that are "not safe for work" ("NSFW") in the average professional workplace. If your post (be it image and/or text) is deemed graphic by a Moderator, then it is indeed graphic. This is not a decision open to debate. This includes, but isn't necessarily limited to, the following categories:
Nudity, partial nudity, or adult content: Naked people aren't safe for work in the average American workplace. Exposed breasts, nipples (including ones visible through material), penises and vaginas, and rear ends aren't permitted. Remember, an image doesn't have to contain complete nudity for it to be out of place at the office. A good reference point is the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition. It's not nudity, but it is a great deal of exposed skin and minimal fabric covering that most workplaces frown upon. Anything you see in the Swimsuit Edition shouldn't be posted inline. The same goes for the Page 3 girls, you British lot. A more general reference point for the would be to think about what you wouldn't want your boss to find in your browser cache.
Graphic image content: Images that would make most viewers feel ill, upset, or uncomfortable. This includes but is not limited to: cadavers, autopsies, surgeries, vomiting, severed limbs, alarming deformities, dead animals, extreme body modifications, torture, and bodily functions are not to be posted in the threads. Images that depict graphic content will be deleted. Images containing child pornography will be reported to the appropriate local and Federal law enforcement agencies. The use of images depicting well-known tragedies such as 9/11 is not forbidden - but is generally frowned upon. Images which depict people actually dying (falling to their death, being killed in various ways - e.g. shot, maimed/tortured, etc.) should never be posted or linked to. The same holds true for such images involving animals.
Graphic text content: Blue Collar is not an erotica site, nor is it a clearinghouse for random encounters or potential dates, a place for "who can tell the most disgusting story" contests, or a journal for your (or anyone else's) bodily/biological functions. Using a little common sense and restraint here will go a long way.
Borderline Image Posts: If you're posting an image and you're not quite sure whether it falls under the "safe" category or not, we strongly recommend reviewing this FAQ first. If you still aren't sure, ask a Moderator. The reason we have this rule is so that users can make their own decision as to whether they should chance viewing certain images or not. Inline images don't give the reader that choice, so they must always be safe for work.
Image swapping: Is disallowed for practical reasons. It's too much of a pain for moderation purposes and is too prone to abuse. Don't post rotating images.
Image control: Make sure that any images that you post are under your explicit control. Linking an image from another site that is not under your control can often result in that site changing the contents of what you linked. Sometimes the owner of that site is not particularly nice and will change the image to something that violates Blue Collar's posting guidelines. If you choose to hyperlink an image, you do so at your own risk to your account. By hitting the submit button, you are warranting that you have permission to post an image, even if it is subject to copyright protection. If you submit an image that is later determined to be a copyright infringement, it will be removed; see details in our legal section for more on copyright issues. If that image is illegal (e.g. child porn), Blue Collar will report it and comply with any resulting investigation conducted by State and/or Federal law enforcement agencies.
Aside from "not safe for work" posts, the following are also unacceptable:
Reposting something that was deleted: Posts (and links/threads) are removed for a reason. Reposting a deleted post, complaining about it in the thread, spamming the queue about it, or belaboring the point will result in action being taken. Reposting a deleted inline image as a link instead is generally acceptable as long as it falls within the posting rules. Posting or submitting links on behalf of someone else that was banned will in turn earn you a ban as well. The shorter answer is: Don't do it.
Repetitive messages: Cross-posting, flooding, spamming, advertising for a website, etc. In addition, including a sig file in your posts or a link to your site/blog/freeiPod referral page is also considered spamming, and comments containing them will be deleted. Using bots to post comments will result in a ban.
Threadjacking and disruptions: Posts like 50 lines of the letter "Z," pictures that have nothing to do with the thread's article, "First Post/Page," "who cares," "Blue Collar sucks," posts that are unrelated to the thread topic, complaints about link quality, repeated filter evasion attempts, ban talk, and trolling (see below). Linking to sites that have nothing to do with the topic at hand. Linking to sites that hijack the user's browser is considered to be exceptionally malicious and will result in a posting ban.
Messages exhorting others to commit illegal acts: Murder, extortion, and any other misdemeanor or felony are expressly forbidden, especially threats on public officials. Don't even imply it. DoS attacks, hacking, flooding, and all other related computer crimes will be dealt with immediately and in fullest cooperation with local and federal law enforcement. Also, posting copyrighted software, music, etc. is forbidden (for example, linking MP3s of bands other than your own) as is discussion of illegal file sharing.
Also included in this is harassment -- for example, encouraging people to call someone on the phone, flood a website/mailbox, etc because they were mentioned in a linked article. (See also "messages containing private information" below.)
Hate speech: Criticism is not hate speech, but inflammatory comments directed at a particular ethnic group, sexual orientation, gender, religion, etc. are unacceptable and unwelcome on Blue Collar Black Book.
Messages containing only broken links or broken images: Images that do not load from their image hosts will be removed. Please refer to our list of acceptable image hosts. If you have any free and reliable image hosts with sufficient bandwidth limits - please let us know. You might want to see if your own ISP provides webhosting space; they tend to be most reliable. (Note that in some cases, the general populace of Blue Collar may see a Red X when the image looks OK to you; this is usually because of your browser caching the image.)
Messages containing public OR private information: We are aware that most of this information can be found using Whois, or Google, or a phone book - however, posts containing contact information such as: email addresses, phone numbers, street addresses, social networking profiles, credit card numbers, etc. are not allowed.
Trolling/harassing other Blue Collar members: Unfortunately, disagreements can and will happen - but there is no need for them to become personal. Don't harass other users with your posts, parody links/threads, or create accounts to harass them with.
Blue Collar accounts come with a handy Ignore Feature. Use it to filter out those posters whose comments you'd prefer not to read. Keep in mind that discussing who's on your ignore list is the opposite of ignoring. It crosses the line into trolling of other Blue Collar members and may result in a suspension of posting privileges.
Trolling/harassing Blue Collar Admins and Moderators: Blue Collar does not tolerate abuse of its maintainers in comments, in submitted links, or via emailing them directly. The comments sections in the threads are not the place for airing grievances, mainly because no one person at Blue Collar reads all the comments on the site. With that much going on all at once, important things can be and sometimes are overlooked. The bartender can't get your drink order right if he can't hear you.
Off-site behavior: The short answer is WE DON'T CARE. Off-site melodrama is not our problem. However, we do care when users make it our problem by bringing drama and in-fighting on-site. Never use your Blue Collar account to harass other members. The reverse applies as well. If you've started a fight with another member, don't expect the Moderators to become your personal bodyguards. We do not tolerate harassment of Blue Collar Moderators or Admins. If you've got an issue with a particular member or group of Blue Collar users, take it outside.
A note on email and user profiles: Email exchanges with persons other than Blue Collar members are considered off-site. By default, the email address field in the Blue Collar user profiles is hidden. Blue Collar is neither responsible nor liable for personal/contact information that users choose to make public.
Ban talk: Temporary and/or permanent actions taken by Blue Collar on individual accounts are between the user and Blue Collar and should never be discussed in threads. Ban talk inevitably leads to misinformation and misunderstandings. If you have a question regarding actions taken on your account, contact a moderator. Please note that just as Blue Collar Moderators/Admins will not discuss actions taken on other users' accounts, neither should you discuss actions taken on other member's accounts. Simply put: If it is not your account, it is not your business. This includes without limitation: discussing banned members, campaigning for the reinstatement of banned members, posting on behalf of banned members, submitting links regarding bans or banned members, or discussing other user's accounts in threads. Again: don't discuss bans, banned members, moderation, Moderators, Admins or anything else related to moderation in the threads.
Calling out of other members (in headlines): As odd as this may sound, not everyone wants attention on Blue Collar Black Book. Specifically mentioning a fellow tradesman in a headline or post (where the named tradesman isn't participating) generates attention to a tradesman who didn't intend it. This is not welcome on this site. If you have something to say to a particular tradesman (and it isn't abusive), check their profile for an email address and go directly to the source. Comments and headlines about specific tradesman will likely be deleted, as not everyone needs or wants to see their name in bright lights, and most often, the attention is undesired.
Attention whoring: This is a little SCOTUS-esque -- that is, we know it when we see it. This includes posting disruptively in threads that have nothing to do with you by means of: directing fellow members to your website, image gallery, or just posting your personal images etc. Blue Collar has its own community ebb and flow and might not receive you with flowers if you dive straight in without getting a "feel" for the place first. Any picture you post of yourself has to be Safe For Work. If it isn't, label it as NSFW and link it.
Drinking beer in public: Actually, we just wanted to make sure you were reading all of this carefully. And it depends on what kind of beer.
Abusing the "notify moderators" option: The "notify moderators" and "notify admins" options are not toys. They are not to be used for false alarms, calling attention to members you dislike, or absurd complaints such as "My post was better," etc. Cry "wolf" one too many times and you lose that option.
Belaboring the point: Attempting to find a possible loophole for something we didn't mention here or trying to find some tricky way around the rules isn't going to work. The posting rules aren't complicated. We are not going to spell them out in legalese or cover every possible interpretation of them. This includes the "don't be a jerk" rule. We expect that you can see and understand what the spirit of each rule is. In essence, use your common sense.
The following types of non-message-posting actions will get you banned from Blue Collar immediately:
Attempting to hack, flood, DoS, crack passwords, or otherwise compromise Blue Collar system security, or the security of any site mentioned/linked via Blue Collar. Logs will be sent to the appropriate ISPs and law enforcement immediately.
Child Pornography. Any image or link containing minors or suspected minors in sexual situations will be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Stealing or guessing other people's passwords, giving or loaning your password to other users, or otherwise using or sharing accounts that aren't yours. This includes attempting to create extra accounts or using someone else's account to evade bans. That last one bears repeating - if you create another account while your account is suspended, your new account will be locked and you may be subjected to a longer or even permanent posting ban.
Spamming. Worth mentioning twice. This includes spamming us with link submissions.