We all break rules once in a while. (C'mon, admit it, you've stood in the express grocery lane with 11, even 12 items!) But below are a few rules that we hope you'll really follow.
Even though you may choose not to share your real-life identity with the community, that doesn't give you the right to misrepresent yourself or to pose as someone else. No claiming to be a doctor, a baker or a candlestick maker unless you actually are one. And even then, be mindful when giving out what could be construed as professional advice or opinions.
Since ParentsConnect is a community site, we strongly encourage you to submit posts, photos and other content. (How else are we going to get the inside scoop on parenting?) However, there are a couple of things to remember when you're reading stuff posted by other users like yourself. ParentsConnect doesn't necessarily monitor, verify or endorse all user-generated content. So if mommylicious3 insists Britney Spears is an awesome mom, don't think we think that, too! Also, if you're having a parenting issue, we urge you to contact an appropriate professional (or dial 911!) rather than rely solely on other users' advice. If you listen to dododaddy2 when he says that giving your 2-year old a sippy cup full of vodka will help him sleep, please don't come crying to us!
Don't upload copyrighted material. Even if you've got the best chocolate chip cookie recipe ever, if it came from a cookbook, you can't share it. (You can, however, submit the book as a Good.) Same thing goes for photos. If you didn't snap it, don't slap it on the site. However, even if the photo is yours, a couple of things to consider: If there are other people—especially children—in the photo besides you or your kids, you should get permission from everyone involved before putting the picture up on the site. (Or better yet, choose a photo that only features your family. We know you've got tons!) Also, if there is anything in the photo that could indicate where you live—if your kid's wearing a school T-shirt for example—don't use it.
At this time, you cannot edit or delete your post once it goes up on the site. So if you act rashly, there'll be proof of your bad behavior. D'oh! Don't harass, attack, name-call, insult, ridicule, mock or threaten other members. Ever. No matter what! (Would you like it if someone did that to your kid?) If you do go after a fellow user, we will get rid of your distasteful posts and maybe even suspend you from the site. We reserve the right to edit or delete any post or ban any user, with or without notice, at any time and for any reason, but we're under no obligation to delete anything that you may find personally objectionable.
Keep It Clean
If you can't say it on a VH1 celebreality show (think Flavor of Love or The Surreal Life), then you can't say it here. That gives you a lot of latitude! You can gripe and bitch (and say crap too) but please, no offensive names; extreme obscenities; racist, sexist, homophobic or otherwise derogatory remarks; and absolutely nothing pornographic. (Although we reserve the right to delete any post or ban any user for using profanity, we might also simply edit out an offending word or two if we think it just kind of slipped out accidentally.) And don't link to any other sites that violate this rule, either.
THAT MEANS NO POSTS THAT ARE ENTIRELY LIKE THIS. If you really want to stress that you LOVE or HATE something, that's OK. But make your entire post one big cap-fest and people may be offended (and ANNOYED).
You know how irritating it is to find 27 messages in your inbox, all spam? Well, don't be part of the epidemic. We know your new home business that you just started is the bestest thing ever — but spamming just isn't cool, so don't do it. If you have a deal to announce, there is only one place on our site where we invite you to post links and that's our Deals, Steals & Online Coupons group, which is where you can share deals and promotions with others. You can post non-commercial related links on the other boards, but let's try to keep it to a minimum. ParentsConnect doesn't necessarily monitor, verify or endorse all outside links that are posted by others, so click at your own risk. We also reserve the right to remove links as we see fit.
No Bumping or Multiple Posting
Please don't try to get sneaky by posting the same message multiple times on one or more boards. The same goes for trying to bump your own—or even someone else's posts—to the top of a board without adding anything of substance to the conversation.
While we welcome lively discussions and even a little controversy, do not intentionally post inflammatory issues on unrelated boards, or direct users to heated threads in order to rope more people into the conversation. What's going on in Darfur is truly heinous, but the Love board is not the place to discuss it.
Thanks for reading all this. Now go have some fun!
—The ParentsConnect Team