• For users new and old: the forum rules were streamlined when we transitioned to the new software. Please ensure that you are familiar with them. Continued use of the forum means that you (a) know the rules, and (b) pledge that you'll abide by them. For more information, check out the OrthodoxChristianity.Net Rules section. (There are only 2 threads there - Rules, and Administrative Structure.)

OrthodoxChristianity.Net Forum Rules

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Fr. George

Staff member
Oct 5, 2004
Reaction score
Pittsburgh, PA
OrthodoxChristianity.net Rules and Regulations

Welcome to the OrthodoxChristianity.net (OC.net) forum! We are a community dedicated to discussion of various topics related to Eastern Orthodox Christianity. We welcome you and hope you will stay and join us in discussion. A few rules are important to keep in mind while posting:

A) This site exists with the following foundational principles:
  1. This is an Orthodox Christian Forum, and we should act in accordance with the Gospel and our Faith as people striving to grow closer to our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ.
  2. On this site, Orthodox (in these rules and on the site generally) means "Eastern Orthodox" (EO), "Oriental Orthodox" (OO), and "Old Calendarists" or "Traditionalists" from the EO or OO traditions.
  3. No one is required to affirm that the other groups are canonical from their p.o.v.
  4. We must respect one another in dialogue (see point 1). No pejoratives against the other Orthodox groups.
  5. Non-Orthodox are permitted to be members, to post actively, and to offer positive contributions or corrections when their faith traditions are misrepresented (and to engage in polemical discussion in the appropriate sections).
  6. No proselytizing to non-Orthodox groups.
  7. "Orthodox" here does not apply to Eastern Rite Catholics, vagante groups, etc. (From our p.o.v., there is no "Orthodox in communion with Rome.")
  8. We're here to have spiritual discussion, not necessarily give spiritual advice.
B. We aim for "Academic Discourse," which means:
  1. No personal attacks (ad hominem).
  2. Don't use pejoratives when speaking about persons or ideas revered by others on the forum.
  3. Use the respective clerical titles for Orthodox clergy and appropriate respectful titles for all other faith clergy (no pejoratives). This is not required for defrocked clergy (unless they are received by an Orthodox jurisdiction as clergy) or vagantes. (But still, see point 1 in section A above.)
  4. Discussion for or against any particular group, theological point, etc. should be respectful even if contentious.
  5. No obscenity, blasphemy, pornography, harassment, chain letters, illegal activity, or profanity - either in full or in abbreviation. (There is a very limited relaxation of this in the Private Fora. See the individual board rules.)
C. General Posting Prohibitions. Don't:
  1. Post users' private information or communication without their written permission.
  2. Share posts from the Private Fora on the Public Fora.
  3. Promote another forum here (rule applies to both public and private communication). You can have a plain link in your signature, and you can reference discussions elsewhere in context (and only if relevant).
  4. Post things on behalf of banned or muted users.
  5. Ask us to delete your account. We won't. (Just put "No longer posts here" in your signature.)
  6. Derail threads. Keep them on target, or start a new one. No non sequiturs.
  7. Let a conflict from one area spill into other discussions.
  8. Make a lot of low content posts (5 of fewer characters).
  9. Post naked links (i.e., link with no description of what's on the other side) or full articles. You should have between a sentence and a paragraph either quoting what's on the linked page or summarizing.
  10. Use enormous images in your signatures. Limit to 400w x 125h.
  11. Post the following without first receiving the Administrator's written permission: links to sell, donate, petition, advertise, etc. (not an exhaustive list.)
  12. Post original criminal accusations (i.e., accusing someone of something that has not yet been formally presented in court, Spiritual Court, etc.).
  13. Challenge or otherwise contradict the Orthodox Church's traditional teaching on sexual ethics, marriage, homosexuality, etc. Clarification can be sought, but confusion on these controversial topics will not be sown on an Orthodox forum.
  14. Start overtly political discussions in the public fora. We have a private forum for that purpose; to request access, PM an Administrator or Global Moderator.

Fr. George

Staff member
Oct 5, 2004
Reaction score
Pittsburgh, PA
D. Within the larger forum there are multiple boards. When presenting these board/section rules, we use the following terms & meanings:
  1. Discussion: Fairly simple. Talking about something.
  2. Debate: Discussion including contesting the meaning or application of an argument, story, etc.
  3. Light Polemics: Debate with pejorative language used toward an opposing p.o.v., system of belief, or corporate entity. No profanity or vulgarity.
  4. Full Polemics: Light Polemics with pejorative language used toward opposing users or other individuals. Strong language allowed to a point, as established by precedent and guidelines already published.
E. We have a number of different Sections on the Board, including:
  1. General Forums(i.e. Christian News, Board News, etc.): Discussion, no debate or polemics. These are information-only sections, with relevant discussion of topics permitted.
    • Board News - News about OC.Net or its members.
    • Christian News - Christian news and happenings from around the world.
    • Reviews - Discussion of Orthodox books, music, periodicals, and articles.
      • Book Club - A place to discuss this month's book of the month.
    • Technical Help - Discussion and help for any computer related questions, problems, or inquiries.
    • Prayer Forum - No discussion, debate, or polemics. Only prayer and praise.
  2. Moderated Forums: Discussion and debate, no polemics (except in Free-For-All and Orthodox-Other Christian boards).
    • Convert Issues Forum - Discussion of issues revolving around conversion to the Orthodox Christian faith. The non-Orthodox are encouraged to ask questions or clarify misconceptions about their faith's beliefs and practices, but this is not a place to contest Orthodox teaching or provide non-Orthodox answers.
    • Faith Issues - Discussion of issues and inquiries related to the Orthodox Christian faith.
    • Free-For-All - Discussion of hot topics that may be of a polemical nature. (Don't post in the main board - post in one of the sub-boards.)
      • FFA: Religious Topics - Hot/controversial/debate-intended topics dealing with religion.
      • FFA: Non-Religious Topics - Hot/controversial/debate-intended topics not dealing with religion.
    • Liturgy - Discussion of the services of the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox Church, and for comparative purposes, the Roman Catholic liturgies.
      • Western Rite Discussion - Discussion of Orthodox Christian worship based on the ancient, pre-schism Orthodox church of the west.
    • Ministry Forum - This board is dedicated to discussion and thoughts on how to begin, sustain, improve, and re-make active ministries of the Church.
    • Oriental Orthodox Discussion - A non-polemical discussion of specifically Oriental Orthodox topics. No debate of typical EO-OO problems. Discussion here is specifically from the OO p.o.v.
    • Orthodox Family Forum - Discussion of items related to Orthodox parenting.
    • Orthodox-Other Christian Discussion - Discussions related to Orthodoxy in comparison and contrast to other Christian faiths.
      • Orthodox-Catholic Discussion - Discussion of issues which unite and divide the Orthodox Church and the Roman/Eastern Catholic churches (in Communion with Rome).
      • Orthodox-Protestant Discussion - Discussion of topics related to Orthodoxy and Protestant denominations.
    • Other Topics - Home for information, randomness, diversions, silly threads, and other unclassified topics. Not for serious debate.
  3. Foreign Language Forums: Discussion and debate, no polemics.
    Included: a general Foreign Language board, Slavic Languages, Greek, Romanian, Spanish, Romance languages, and Practice English.
  4. Private Forums: Discussion, debate, and full polemics. n.b. These are not unmoderated, only lightly moderated. Sections here include:
    • Politics
    • Eastern Orthodox - Oriental Orthodox Private Discussions
    • Orthodox - Other Christian Private Discussions
    • Geronda's Moldy Turkish Delight Stash (private but non-polemical).
F. When it comes to maintaining order on the forum:
  1. We have 2 Administrators: the Administrator of the Forum (Fr. George), and the Content and Technical Administrator (Anastasios, the founder & owner of the forum).
  2. We have 2 Global Moderators who work under the Administrator of the Forum to supervise moderation and to help with appeals and conflict resolution: LizaSymonenko and Dominika.
  3. We have Section Moderators who primarily supervise one particular section, but who are authorized to moderate in any section if needed. An updated list of Moderators is kept here: http://forums.orthodoxchristianity.net/threads/oc-net-staff-moderatorial-structure.78251/
  4. If you want to appeal a moderatorial action, first do so with the person who issued the moderation, and then if not resolved, go to their immediate supervisor. Fr. George is the final appeal for forum moderation (unless you're appealing Fr. George's direct action - then you go to Anastasios).
  5. Moderation generally proceeds from: Private Warning > Public Warning > Warned Status > Post Moderation (posts must be approved) > Muting (no posts allowed temporarily) > Banning.
  6. No duplicate accounts, especially not to circumvent banning. (If you've lost your password, email the forum and we can re-set it.)
  7. Do not publicly discuss moderation. Any complaints, appeals, etc. must be conducted via PM.
  8. When making official decisions, moderators will post in Green text administrators in Red text. Other users should not use these colors for their posts. No imitating the moderators, global moderators, or administrators.
  9. If a moderator asks you to prove an assertion or provide your identity to them in private, you must do so in the requested way and timeframe or face moderation. (We limit these requests.)
  10. We can't catch everything - if you see a rules violation, please use the "Report to Moderator" (or "Report to Administrator" for PMs) link at lower-right.
  11. Per Anastasios: Do not circumvent the Administrator of the Forum. The only appeals that should go to Anastasios are those dealing with direct original actions by the Administrator of the Forum. If you want him to be aware of issues, you can BCC him on PMs.
From time to time we issue updates and addenda to these rules, which will be posted below. All users are expected to comply with them.

Undoubtedly there will be someone who manages to do something bad which doesn't fit into the above. To this end, Mods and Admins reserve the right to amend these rules at any time.
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