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Board Rules and FAQ

Below are the rules that must be observed when posting comments on this board. Our policy is to keep the rules to a minimum. However, if you want to suggest new rules, please email your ideas to us and we will consider them.

Rules (must be observed)
1. Use polite and civil language at all times. Using bad language does not advance any cause; it only diminishes the value of a discussion board.

2. Do not use the name of the Duke lacrosse case accuser in your comments. This is a widely accepted rule and we will observe it without any exception. If your comments include the accuser’s name, the moderator will remove them no matter how valuable the rest of the comments might be.

Providing a link to another source that includes the accuser's name is fine. The name has been published in so many other sources that it is difficult to entirely avoid it.

3. When copying and pasting information from another site, be sure to document the exact source of the information and give full credit (names, dates, etc.) to the original source. Also, consider providing a link instead of the copy/paste option.

Suggestions (optional)
If you want to reference an article published in the media, you should normally provide a link to the article. However, on an exceptional basis, you may copy and paste articles from media sources either in full or in part. This rule is intended to prevent our board from getting unnecessarily cluttered up with second hand contents.


1. How do I start a new topic?

The function allows you to start a new topic and invite other members of the board to discuss it. Alternatively, if you have some information which you want to share with the board, you may create a new topic and use it for that purpose. This function is restricted to the OPEN area of out board. You cannot create new topics under the MODERATED part of our board.

To go to the OPEN area of the board, click on FODU Discussion Boards. Then, on the lower part of your screen, click on Off-Topic discussions. Do not let that title mislead you. You may start topics on that board that are on topic as well as off topic. It is called off-topic, because all off topic discussions must be located there. Once you are in the Off-Topic discussions area, you may click on the “New Topic” command to start a new topic (or, “New Poll” to start a new Poll). Please provide a good description to your topics so that other members can properly react and respond.

When it makes sense, feel free to put a link to your topic on the regular (moderated) part of the board to announce something or call the attention of other members. However, I ask that you do this only sparingly.

2. How do I use the Private Message (PM) facility?

The purpose of a PM is to send a message to another member on the same board, privately. A message sent through a PM is only seen by the recipient of the message. Furthermore, nobody, including the recipient of the PM, sees the email address of the sender. All addressing issues are handled by the board. Some of you have been using this facility but some have not, and asked for assistance on how to do it. Most members customize their PM facility such that any time a new PM is received they are notified at their regular email address, by the board. This helps ensure that even if you do not access the board for a few days, you are made aware of your new messages.

There are several ways to initiate a PM. I will explain only one method here. To start a PM, go the members list (click on Members to the left of Calendar). Locate the name of the member you want to send a PM and click on the name. Next, you will see the public profile of that member. There will be four sections of information on the screen. The upper section to the right, entitled “Communicate,” contains an item Personal Message. Next to that, you will see a link “Click Here”. By clicking on that link, you will initiate a PM to the selected member. You have to be logged onto the board in order to send a PM. Otherwise, you will be prompted to do so.

The rest of the process should be straight forward, simply follow the instructions on the screen. When done typing your message, click on “Send Message” button located at the bottom of your screen. To read private messages sent to you check your inbox from time to time. The Inbox is located next to MyControls.

3. Can I edit my comments after they are posted?

At the moment, yes, you may edit your own comments. However, this should be kept at a minimum and done only for the purposes of correcting spelling mistakes and fixing non-functional links etc.. Once your comments are posted, it is not a good idea to keep revising them. On most discussion boards, editing of comments is not allowed (it is disabled). In the future, if we enconter problems, we may also do the same.

4. Can I remove my comments?

No, you may not remove your comments from the board. In urgent cases (if you posted something and you want it removed), contact the moderator via email or PM and ask for it. The board moderator can remove any comment.

5. Can I upload images from my computer and display them in my comments?

Yes, you can. More details on how to do it will follow.

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