Comments Policy

We aim to moderate all comments within 24 hours, however our moderators only work within standard UK working hours i.e. Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm GMT/Summer Time (depending on the time of year).

We welcome comments as an aid to building community online and to clarification on issues or topics raised in these articles. To facilitate genuine discussion, we have a zero tolerance approach to bad language and to trolling – that is, making comments with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion. To that end:

 

  • Comments must be on topic. Comments are on topic if they discuss the immediate implications of the facts/ideas discussed in the article. General discussions not explicitly related to the details of the article will be considered off topic.
  • Make comments in the most appropriate thread. Some comments, while strictly on topic, may relate to topic discussed in more detail in some other thread. Extended discussion of those points should be carried out in the more appropriate thread, with link-backs to reference the discussion as needed.
  • Comments should avoid excessive repetition.  If moderators believe you are being excessively repetitive, further repetition will be treated as being off topic.
  • No link or picture only. Any link or picture should be accompanied by text summarizing the content of the link or picture, and showing how it is relevant to the topic of discussion. Failure to do so will result in the comment being considered off topic.
  • No accusations of deception. Any accusations of deception, fraud, dishonesty, or corruption will be deleted. But noting inaccuracies in the article is quite welcome. Or you can contact the editor about inaccuracies via the Contact us page.
  • No personal attacks.  Comments using labels like “alarmist” and “denier” as derogatory terms should be avoided.
  • No ALL CAPS. Using all caps is usually understood in internet environments to be shouting. Not helpful to discussion.
    No profanity or inflammatory tone. Constructive discussion is difficult when overheated rhetoric or profanity is in use.
  • No cyber stalking. Posting personal details of another user results in your account being banned from the website.
  • No dogpiling. Numerous people making the same comment about someone else’s comment is unhelpful. If a comment already has a response, consider carefully whether you are adding anything interesting before also responding.
  • No multiple identities. Posting comments at the website should use only one registered screen name. Use of more than one account will result in all those accounts being banned.
  • No wholesale copying and pasting of earlier comments. Comments repeated from earlier comments (or from other websites) will be moderated. However, short excerpts from earlier comments are accepted if making an on-topic point, preferably with a hyperlink. Note that with each comment, the date/time is a hyperlink. If you link to this URL, clicking on the link will take you directly to that part of the webpage.
  • No spamming. Spamming will result in deletion of comments and suspension of the account without warning.
  • Complaints about moderation. Complaints about how moderation is being applied will be considered off topic and deleted. If you wish to complain about the moderation then please usedo so via the Contact us page.

We try to avoid harsh application of the comments policy in the interests of a free flowing discussion, and hope for your cooperation in return.

We reserve the right to disable comments on any and/or all articles without warning at any time.

HTML Tips:

HTML Hyperlinks
When posting a URL, it’s better to make it an active link for several reasons. Firstly because it makes it easier for readers to follow the link. Secondly, it enables you to use descriptive words for the link rather than a URL. Lastly, and most importantly, long URLs can break the Skeptical Science web design which makes me very unhappy. To post a hyperlink, use the following code:

<a href=”http://url”> Description of page you’re linking to</a>

Posting Images
You can use HTML code to post an image. The image needs to be hosted online (you can upload images at tinypic.com). The HTML code is:

<img src=”http://image_url” alt=”” />

IMPORTANT: The image must be no wider than 450 pixels. If the image is wider than this, use the width element to resize it to 450 pixels. Eg:

<img src=”http://image_url” alt=”” width=”450″ />

Other HTML Tags:

<strong>Bold: <strong>Whatever text you want bold here

<em>Italic</em>: Whatever text you want italic here

If the above doesn’t work, follow this advice