Update: the new Chatiquette has been instated. We are still interested in hearing feedback, so feel free to continue to give feedback here.
Our goal in making these revisions was not to add stricter rules. Rather, our goal was to have better boundaries for what behaviors are appropriate or inappropriate in chat. The community already had expectations for appropriate chat behavior that make chat a more pleasant place for everyone, and we wanted to clarify and make explicit those expectations.
The revised Chatiquette can be found at the end of this post. Please review it and post any feedback below. We want to hear what the community thinks, so the current Chatiquette will not be replaced until sufficient time has passed for us to receive feedback and make any changes as needed.
This is a set of guidelines for proper chat etiquette in The Nineteenth Byte. While following these suggestions is a great way to get along, it's not, nor will it ever be, a complete list; always use your own judgment and self-control. Remember, you're not the only one chatting in The Nineteenth Byte. Be considerate of other chatters.
- Be Nice means being patient and welcoming, especially to new users. It means not being rude, and being polite instead. And it means avoiding name-calling, bigotry, harassment and inappropriate language.
- The Nineteenth Byte may be a user’s first experience with PPCG, so be a good ambassador.
- While off-topic conversations are allowed in The Nineteenth Byte, they should not get in the way of on-topic discussions. The Nineteenth Byte's purpose is to provide a place for users to discuss PPCG.
- Please pause an off-topic conversation or continue it in a different room created for the conversation if there is an on-topic conversation going on. The room owners will be happy to assist the latter choice by moving the off-topic messages to the created room.
Don't Be Disruptive
- Being disruptive means doing anything that prevents, impedes, or discourages other users from using The Nineteenth Byte for its intended purpose. This includes continuing off-topic conversations while an on-topic conversation is happening, or posting nonsense that makes it harder to follow conversations.
- Additionally, engaging in vitriolic discussions or baiting others into engaging in them is similarly disruptive. We're all here to have a good time.
- Don't abuse oneboxes. Certain types of links will be inlined into chat. While posting interesting pictures/animations is OK in moderation, consider just posting it as a regular link instead. Links to images are preferred because 1) they take up less vertical space, allowing more of the conversation to be seen, and 2) some users have slow internet, limited bandwidth, or use mobile data for chatting. A link to an image is much less disruptive. The same applies to excessively large code-blocks.
- Don't promote your own content too much. Promoting your own content is absolutely OK, but there is definitely a point at which it becomes excessive. Avoid promoting off-site material unless it's related to the topic of discussion. Sharing posts that you want feedback on is perfectly fine, but sharing things just in the hope of getting more upvotes is not. The rule of thumb to follow is "If somebody else had posted this, would I still really want to share it?" If the answer is yes, then go ahead. More guidelines on self-promotion.
Don't Make Noise
- Sometimes, there isn't anybody talking in chat. That's perfectly fine. Don't send messages just because the room is quiet.
- Consider whether your message is actually adding anything to the chat room. If not, please keep it to yourself. If the message wouldn't be missed if it were gone, it probably doesn't add anything.
- Don't use The Nineteenth Byte as a dumping ground for your thoughts or actions. Consider whether a topic would be relevant to others before talking about it. We're here to have discussions, not to listen to someone's stream of consciousness.
Don't use chat flags for chatiquette violations
- Chat flags are only for urgent or offensive violations of network wide SE policy, and alert all 10K users and mods across all SE chat rooms. Instead mention it to a room owner. If it needs to be private raise a custom flag (in need of moderator intervention) on main (not chat) on one of your own posts.
The room owners of The Nineteenth Byte have a duty to keep the chat room a nice place. In a perfect world, they would not need to use their moderation tools, because everyone would be respectful of each other, and use chat appropriately. However, situations do arise where moderation is necessary, and in those situations the room owners will take action.
Users who violate this chatiquette will be warned, and the violating messages will be removed. Additionally, room owners may kick the user from the room at their discretion. For violations of network-wide policy, which includes aggravating users in the room with repeated violations of this chatiquette, a network-wide suspension may be applied by a moderator.
If your messages are removed, or you are kicked or suspended, please reflect on the cause and make an effort to not violate the chatiquette in the future. If, after reflection, you believe a room owner action was inappropriate, please feel free to bring it up with the other room owners or on Meta for review.