The BBQ Pit is the forum for rants about the outside world or quarrels between posters - often the first turns into the second. Although the standards of discourse are looser than in the other forums, the Pit is NOT a free-for-all - you don’t have to be nice, but you do have to be reasonably civil. Please observe the following rules when posting in the Pit:
Rants should be suitable for the Pit
Cutesy, “I Pit puppies for being sooo cute!” non-Pittings are not welcome here. Put them in MPSIMS. Rants which are genuine but simply too tepid or mundane for the Pit will be moved or closed as we see fit. Lastly, rants about personal trauma that are expected to generate mostly supportive, sympathetic responses will likely be moved to MPSIMS. This is not a commentary on the seriousness of said life events, merely on the best forum for that type of thread.
The Pit is not your personal diary
The Pit isn’t Cranks’ Corner or group therapy. Posters who glut the forum with threads or consistently hijack the threads of others may be subject to moderator action. No, there isn’t a magic number of threads or posts per day that are acceptable. (And if you’re even asking, you probably need a LiveJournal.)
Include links when Pitting other posters
When Pitting another poster, it is considered good form to include a link to the post or posts that inspired the Pitting. In the case of thread parodies, including a link to the thread being parodied is mandatory. Otherwise, no one knows what you’re talking about and confusion ensues.
Do not threaten harm or wish death on another poster
Do not threaten another poster with physical harm, or wish for their demise. This includes hypothetical statements like “it would make me happy if someone ran you over” or “I hope you say that to [someone prone to stabbing people] and they stab you”.
Do not post contact information (email, phone, mailing address, etc.) to facilitate a campaign for/against a person, group, or issue
We don’t want the board used to hassle people or groups of people. You can urge people to write their Congressperson or other political leaders, but let people find the contact information themselves. Don’t post it here.
Quoting: do not alter words within quote tags beyond fair usage standards
Do not change quotes of other posters or off-board citations beyond fair usage standards. If you delete material, use either ellipses or descriptive tags (e.g., <snip>, [material deleted], etc.) to indicate you’ve done so. To add non-editorial explanatory material, use square brackets, which means things like [sic] or replacing a pronoun to make a partial quote clearer. If you add formatting for emphasis, please indicate you’ve done so, either in square brackets within the quote or immediately after the quote. Quote tags are for actual quotes only - don’t use them to paraphrase another’s argument or make a joke.
No hate speech
If you say hateful and/or racist things, you may get warned or banned. Some slurs are likely to be viewed as hate speech when used as insults, some aren’t. No, we aren’t going to give you a list. Our goal is not to restrict any and all speech which could be viewed by someone as offensive, but simply keep a modicum of decency, even here.
By trolling, we mean posting of inflammatory comments solely to get a rise out of people. If we feel your primary goal as a poster is to make people mad, you’ll quickly find yourself on the road to banning. On the flip side, the fact that a poster consistently makes you mad doesn’t automatically make them a troll.
Don’t go nuts in thread titles
Profanity is permitted, but don’t get carried away. We reserve the right to do something about thread titles we think are over the top.
Pit threads targeting other posters cannot contain direct insults in their titles.
You can say stuff like, “Poster X, I’d like a word,” or “I pit Poster X.” You can include the reason for the Pitting, provided it’s not pejorative. “I Pit Poster X for his opinions about the Treaty of Ghent,” is fine. “I pit Poster X for being a racist,” is not.
This rule does not apply to threads that are not about other posters on the board. “Politician X is an idiot!” remains a perfectly acceptable thread title.
No harassment of other posters
If you have a quarrel with a poster in a particular thread, fine. If you follow that poster from thread to thread and attempt to pick fights, that’s harassment and may get you warned or banned.
No complaints about SDMB administration in the Pit
All comments or complaints about SDMB administration should go in the About This Message Board forum, not in the Pit. Pitting of SDMB staff is permitted for views they express as ordinary posters.
**Mind the moderators **
In the Pit as in all other SDMB forums, the role of the moderators is to moderate. If we feel a thread is getting out of hand, we may tell you or the thread participants generally to back off. Such comments are simply cautions and in themselves won’t get you tossed off the board. (We reserve the right to make exceptions in extreme cases.) However, refusal to cooperate or persisting in arguing with a mod after you’ve been told to stop may result in disciplinary action. If you feel you’ve been unfairly treated, take your complaint to ATMB.