574

We now automatically remove salutations from posts as they are entered. I got really tired of performing this edit over and over, so anything matching the form of … ^ # begins at start of body \s* # possible spaces ( hii?(?![a-z])| # any of these greeting words hello| hey(?![a-z])| dear| greetings| hai| guys| howdy| ...


188

It's perfectly OK to ask the OP to inform us of what they have attempted so far to solve their problem, in a polite, constructive way. So many people were asking "What have you tried?" without any useful elaboration about what information would be helpful, that it was becoming rude. As of March 2013 that comment has been outright blocked. See the message ...


187

Expletives are generally not allowed I didn't like it before, and I don't like it now. An expletive is a word that fills space without adding any semantic content (meaning), or that's only for stress. Examples are on earth (in "why on earth did…"), the heck (in "what the heck is…") and, yes, some other, vulgar things. Expletives are (or should ...


174

As said, I'm annoyed about the lack of previous discussion before you made the decision. People spent plenty of time refining and improving this and it's now wasted. It's not like you don't have a point with the reasons for deleting it, but you should have at least given some hint that the project is on probation, and any work invested in it may be for ...


142

We re-examined this issue recently in light of Aaron Swartz's tragic suicide. We concluded that, for a site like ours, a formal policy or process around memorializing the accounts of the deceased might do more harm than good. Here's why: On a site like ours, it's not as necessary as it is on more social networks. For many, sites like Facebook serve as ...


142

That's a lot better! Remarks on the content Don't expect new users to know the rules “the rules” → “all the rules”. Saying that new users don't have to know any rule won't go well. We're proud to be one of the few large, user-driven spaces online where name-calling, harassment, and other online nastiness are almost non-existent. I don't think that ...


106

TL;DR: Don't go into chat without thinking about the other side. Don't be a Sith. I've never been particularly involved in politics. Sure, my age is a major factor in that, but I consider myself pretty well-read in what's going on in the world - outside my house, my state, and even my country. And in years past, I had stances on some issues, and some that ...


93

I used to post ad-hoc comments like Please don't prefix your titles with "C#" and such. That's what the tags are for I replaced that with Please see "Stack Overflow does not allow tags in titles" I generally got good responses from these, if I got any responses at all, for instance: @JohnSaunders: Thank you for your information. I will consider to ...


93

I think it's fine, but... Some observations. "You shouldn't talk to anyone here in a way that you wouldn't talk to someone in person, including a boss or new colleague." The people who don't need to hear this already understand it, and the people who do need to hear it already think they're doing it right. "We're all in this together," "Focus on the post, ...


92

I find the phrase Be civil. Attacking or harassing individuals based on gender, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, age, race, or religion – and any and all other type of personal attack – is unacceptable. bothersome - and it feels like it was written by a lawyer. That long list comprises "legally protected characteristics", but it fatally ...


79

I think you've done a disservice in deleting the post. As you've mentioned the post isn't the problem, it's how the post was used to institutionalize rudeness that was the problem. However, we've dealt with institutionalized rudeness in the past through technology. For example, lmgtfy links are now banned on Stack Overflow. Yes, technology currently does ...


75

In a linguistic sense, I think some people can interpret "Thanks in advance" as rude because it may indicate that you're not interested in sticking around for an answer - you're just going to come back and pick up whatever is left when you return. So I've heard, at least. On the linguistic scale, there's a better site to ask if you want to know how "Thanks ...


74

Wendikidd mostly nailed this, but here's the semi-official guideline: Generally speaking, your "about me" is just that—what you want to share with the world, and we try to allow users a good bit of freedom there. However, in the rare cases where what's there is likely to be truly offensive to large groups of seemingly reasonable people, we may not ...


73

One of the problems with political discussion is that they tend to escalate to heated debate and eventually insults and personal attacks. In some cases, people may be offended enough to flag political messages, even if they read like mere parody or fall just short of offensive to the general audience. I responded to two sets of flags on political messages ...


66

Let's read that "be nice" policy: Whether you've come to ask questions, or to generously share what you know, remember that we’re all here to learn, together. Be welcoming and patient, especially with those who may not know everything you do. Oh, and bring your sense of humor. Just in case. That basically covers it. But these three guidelines may help: ...


57

One problem is the wide disparity in attention levels at different sites. Is 39 moves the longest a chess game can go moving only pawns? was posted to Math. I think it is a much better fit for Puzzling, but the activity level at Puzzling is so much lower. Cross-posting would help in cases like this. The proliferation of sites (particularly betas) ...


57

Harassment and bullying Harassment and bullying. If you find yourself in a hostile interaction, disengage. If the other party keeps it up, flag it. If you think something needs staff attention, use the "Contact Us" link found at the bottom of every page. I think that this paragraph is a bit ... off. It should be named "Reaction to Harassment and ...


56

I think what we're seeing here is the confluence of two very separate problems. Together, I think, they create situations like those Yannis described in generalities. First: The Silent Majority I've done my best to consistently remind people that the VAST MAJORITY of our userbase is excellent. We have some really amazing people on our sites who, while ...


53

Generally speaking, answering questions that should get closed encourages bad behavior. This is how I handle it: If the question is a real question, constructive, not too localized and on topic on another SE site: Vote/flag to migrate. Answer the question. If the question is not a real question, not constructive, too localized or off topic on all SE ...


52

What tone should I strike in comments? Comments should always be civil and informative. Take the time and effort to make them so, or refrain from commenting and let the closing system and the FAQ do the work for you. When writing a comment, be sure to explain why a user should do something. Saying "make your question more specific", for example, does not ...


48

I wrestle with this as well. What I have worked out as a habit is: I try to leave comments where another user has correctly answered but not yet received the green check mark. Do unto others and all that. For my own posts, I will sometimes comment something to the effect of, "Hi, I see you're new to SO. If you feel an answer solved the problem, please ...


48

Plz is slang, especially used by an immature younger person. Often when having a formal conversation people do not like the use of slang in the conversation. Also, to me, someone not taking the time to write out something as simple as please feels disrespectful to me; like I was not important enough to make our conversation formal. So things like Plz ...


48

When a user posts comments that are rude or unconstructive, just flag them for moderator attention, and a moderator will take care of it. Then, disengage. It takes two to tango.


42

After all, I'm simply answering a smaller set of highly refined questions to the best of my abilities, through experience and the aid of Google, and working with the original posters to solve their problems concisely and correctly. It can't get much more "right" than that, buddy! That's what the site is for, and you're using it exactly as it was designed to ...


42

From what I've seen, the general way SE handles stuff like this is that you can put anything in your profile/comments/whatever until someone finds it offensive, at which point they flag it and mods decide whether it's something that could legitimately cause offense or not. You've got a lot of leeway in profiles, but things have been removed before; racism, ...


41

Anything you can say in comments can be phrased in a friendly way, an unfriendly way, and a neutral way. Neutral, short responses can sometimes come across as unfriendly. That's because on the Internet, nobody can see your facial expressions. In fact, no matter what you write, it's going to be interpreted by different people at different points on the ...


41

I really like the updated guidance, but somehow I also think: Are they really necessary to that extent? I cannot remember I have seen anyone being "harassed" by "on gender, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, age, race, or religion"... Are there any IRL examples of that? It is not meaning that I don't think rules like that should be part of the ...


41

This sounds like hair-splitting to me. The Be Nice policy is certainly geared toward being nice to other users as that's the common case. But it seems weird to classify the people you ought to be nice to by whether they have an account on our sites. For one thing, that would mean people could gain protection from harassment just by signing up. But I think ...


41

I don't think this behavioral pattern is limited to politics at all. Generally, in respectful discourse, it is unacceptable to denigrate others because of their opinion if you want to continue to have respectful discourse. In my experience, Stack Exchange is one of the best places on the internet for respectful discourse. The level of maturity and relative ...


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