Since yesterday the forum has some new rules.
The new rules were created to address certain problems that I identified with the forum. Please read these rules since you are expected to follow them.
The new rules aim to help make the forum a more pleasant place for more people.
Here I will try to give some examples of what is and what is not acceptable.
Case 1: A member starts a topic to ask a specific question
If you know the answer or you can be helpful in some way, then reply with a helpful post. You can also reply to ask from the initial poster to clarify something. If you can not be helpful in any way then do not reply. Do not reply with some joke. Do not reply with something which is off-topic.
Case 2: A thread has a specific topic.
Reply if you have something useful to say about the topic being discussed. You can be witty or funny, if the topic is a light one, but you still need to be relevant to the initial post and you have to be careful not to be offensive or impolite, particularly when responding to new members. If you want to reply to something mentioned in the thread that could take the thread off-topic, then start a new topic. Do not be shy to start new topics. It is better to have 5 different threads, each one about a single topic, rather than have one thread with a lot of off-topic posts.
Case 3: A thread has no specific topic.
If a thread does not have a very specific topic, such as the "Goodmorning All" thread, then you can use such thread for a more casual chat. If you want more general light chat with no specific topic, then feel free to start a few more such threads.
Case 4: You want to ask something another member
In this case you can send them a PM, or at least do it in one of the "no specific topic" threads discussed above. Do not ask irrelevant personal questions in other topics.
Case 5: Somebody said something which in violation of our rules
Do not reply in kind to offensive posts. Report such posts to me or a moderator. I do not have the time to review every post made in the forum. What I will do is review a sample of posts every now and then plus the posts that are reported. I will not accept the excuse that you violated a rule because you were replying to another member who also violated a rule. Please do use the "report this post" feature, but use it wisely when you sincerely believe that a post should be edited or removed.
Case 6: Posts related to politics and the Cyprus Problem
All such posts should be posted in the designed sections. Do not start a thread related to politics or the Cyprus Problem in the general sections of the forum. Also, do not respond to any topic in the General sections of the forum with something political or related to the Cyprus problem. Any posts that use terms or anything that even indirectly questions the sovereignty rights of the Republic of Cyprus over the whole island should be posted only in the Cyprus Problem sections of the forum.
Case 7: Joking between old members and friends.
Do not worry, I can understand the difference between being intentionally mean to another member and joking with a friend of yours. Just make sure your jokes are posted in the appropriate threads as mentioned above, and that they do not take a thread off-topic.
I believe that both the letter and the spirit of the rules is clear and since most of our members are intelligent people you should have no problem to understand them. For this reason if a member violates in an obvious way any of these rules I will take this to mean that this member is not willing to cooperate and does not share with me the vision I have for this forum.