AnandTech Forum Guidelines

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Jul 9, 2009
AnandTech Forum Guidelines


In an effort to make our management of the forums as transparent as possible, we have refined our member and posting guidelines and we have created a set of moderator guidelines. It is our hope that we can better satisfy members by being upfront and clear about what we expect from everyone.

We want to give all our members as much freedom as possible while maintaining an environment that encourages productive discussion. It is our desire to encourage our members to share their knowledge and experiences in order to benefit the rest of the community, while also providing a place for people to come and just hang out. To accomplish this, we have decided that a set of guidelines interpreted by our moderators is the best way to move forward.

Micromanaging every member, thread, post, or word is not something we are interested in. Every situation is unique, and we don't feel we can provide the type of forum we want by strictly defining the subject matter and content we allow here.

We also intend to encourage respect and responsibility among members in order to maintain order and civility. Our social forums will have a relaxed atmosphere, but other forums will be expected to remain on-topic and posts should be helpful, relevant and professional.

In order to accomplish the goals we have set forth, members will be expected to abide by the Member and Posting Guidelines provided here. Failure to do so will result in our team of moderators taking action. The options available to a moderator in managing apparent violations of our guidelines will be set forth in our Moderator Guidelines.

Member and Posting Guidelines

Do not use our Forums to post any material, or links to any material, which is knowingly false and/or defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, vulgar, hateful, harassing, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, invasive of a person's privacy, or otherwise violative of any law. Special exception to the restrictions on vulgarity and profanity are granted ONLY in the social forums. Additionally, special exception to the restriction on sexually oriented material is granted ONLY in the Love & Relationships forum.

All Terms of Service must be followed at all times, or a ban will be instated. Length and permanence of the ban will be set at moderator discretion.

We ask for respect and common decency towards your fellow forum members. This includes adhering to the following guidelines which will be enforced via a combination of member request and moderator discretion.

1) No trolling, flaming or personally attacking members. Deftly attacking ideas and backing up arguments with facts is acceptable and encouraged. Attacking other members personally and purposefully causing trouble with no motive other than to upset the crowd is not allowed.

2) No pornographic material is permitted. Material of a mature nature is allowed on a limited basis ONLY in our Love and Relationships forum, but we ask that members use care and discretion when posting sensitive material. Offensive, objectifying, and overly explicit posts with little or no substance will not be permitted.

3) No sharing or requesting pirated software. Discussions addressing piracy are allowed, but using the Forums as a hub or a school for pirates is not.

4) No posting of other's copyrighted material. Discussions of copyright are becoming increasingly important, but we will not allow the Forums to be used to violate any US law.

5) Spamming will not be permitted. On topic references to your personal commercial matters are permitted on a limited basis and at moderator discretion. Multiple quick nef posts, posts designed to generate traffic to specific web sites, and flooding the Forums will not be tolerated.

6) Foul language in topic titles, summaries or sigs and excessive foul language is not permitted. With uncensored language comes an increased requirement for responsibility among users. Moderator discretion applies.

7) Members must maintain a valid email address. We currently block some email providers, and we will not allow members to use disposable email accounts (designed to expire in a matter of hours or days).

8) Only one account is allowed per person. If you've been given a vacation or a ban, do not create a new account. Instead, please discuss the matter with our moderators via the Moderator Discussions sub-forum which you will still have access to for the duration of your vacation. We have various ways to check if accounts were started by the same person. We will also permaban new accounts based on strong circumstantial evidence or the appearance that they may be secondary accounts.

9) Respect other users' privacy and do not post personal or private information of any other user without their express permission, regardless of the source. This also includes PMs between two or more members. The contents of those PMs cannot be posted in the forum unless all parties agree to it.

10) Post in the right forum. Topics posted where they don't belong will be moved. If the subject matter of a topic is broad or vague enough to fit into more than one category, please only pick the one that seems to be the best fit. Threads on the same topic are not allowed to be cross-posted in multiple forums unless members in one forum suggest taking it elsewhere after addressing the issue.

11) Respect individual forum specific rules. Some of our specialized forums have additional guidelines posted within that are expected to be understood and followed. This is especially important in our For Sale/Trade, Want to Buy/Trade For, and Hot Deals forums.

12) Do not contact individual moderators. Please report violations of these guidelines by using the "report" feature located at the bottom of each post. Please direct all questions about specific moderator actions to our Moderator Discussions sub-forum. Please be patient with moderation requests and inquiries. Users found in violation of this directive will be given only one warning and pointed in the right direction before further action is taken.

13) Baiting moderators will not be tolerated nor will Mod Call Outs. Any action that reasonably can be considered baiting a moderator, or multiple consecutive actions that heavily push the boundaries of any of these guidelines will result in an instant short term vacation. Repeated violation of this rule may result in a permaban.

14) No price checks allowed

15) To access our FS/T forum, members must have a minimum post count of 25 along with being a registered member for 7 days.

16) Signatures
a) You may have up to 6 lines of no more than 90 characters each. Blank lines count in the 6.
b) The default font size will be set at 2. You may go smaller, but not larger.
c) No url shorteners or profanity will be allowed.
d) You may have no more than one short, simple, self-promotion link.
e) You must have 25 posts before a sig is allowed.

17) Do not start a begging thread in any forum or sub forum. This includes asking for money, for a loan, for computer parts, or for anything material. If a member makes such a thread, it will be removed immediately.

The tone of our Forums is expected to remain at least at a "basic cable" level. This is just a general yardstick for users and moderators to get an idea of what we expect. Content that crosses this line, as interpreted by our moderators, will be subject to moderation.

Our moderators are volunteers who work hard to keep the forums a hospitable place for everyone. Please respect their dedications and commitment to fair and balanced treatment of our members.

Moderator Guidelines

From our pool of regular members, we will invite a number to participate on the forums as moderators. These will be upstanding members of the community willing to help us make the forums the most hospitable environment for everyone. Moderators will help assist AnandTech in enforcing our member and posting guidelines, and are expected to use their abilities to manage threads and users with rationality and responsibility.

It is important to remember that moderator discretion is necessary. We cannot rigidly define all moderator actions with a set of rules that could just as easily run as a script. Every situation is different and every member deserves the fairest treatment under the circumstances. As it stands, we need a human touch to treat each situation as fairly as possible.

While flexibility and discretion are important in moderation, we must also have guidelines in place that help promote moderator consistency, fairness, and appropriate treatment of forum members. In addition to helping support and enforce moderator actions, these guidelines will serve to let our members know what they can expect from their moderators.

Moderators have a title listing the forums they moderate. They are able to moderate in other forums, but are encouraged to do so only in extreme and obvious cases of a violation or when a thread needs to be moved. Moderators are expected to remain in good standing with the community and uphold all of our member and posting guidelines.

Senior Moderators, who will also be noted by title, have jurisdiction over all forums. Included in the hierarchy of Senior Moderators are those moderators retaining the title "Super Moderator", "Administrator", or "Forum Director". In addition to normal moderation, Senior Moderators are responsible for making decisions concerning permanent bans, advising moderators on actions, reviewing member complaints about moderator activity, and generally making sure moderation at AnandTech is run fairly and efficiently.

All moderators will take various actions to enforce our Member and Posting Guidelines. The type of action moderators take will depend on the type and severity of the violation and moderator discretion will apply. The types, indications and procedures of the actions moderators can take are as follows:

Thread and Post Moderation

1) Moving threads and posts ? Threads started in the wrong forum will be moved. Notices will be sent to the original poster and thread participants. Posts may also be merged into another thread (if they are very similar) or split off from a thread (if the topic changed in the middle of the thread). After the move, the moderator will post in the thread indicating where the thread came from and why it was moved, merged or split. In the case of a split, a link to the original thread will be placed in the new thread.

2) Locking threads ? Threads that violate user or posting guidelines or degrade into flame wars or are full of nef posts will be locked. Locking will always be preferred to editing or deletion where possible. If a thread is meandering off topic and could still be saved, moderators may issues a warning in the thread that it is in danger of being locked. Otherwise, when locking a thread, the moderator will post a reason before the lock.

3) Editing posts ? Posts that contain content that violates our posting guidelines may be edited by moderators to remove the offending content. If an entire post is blatantly in violation of our guidelines, moderators reserve the right to delete all the text in the post and make any kind of witty comment they feel appropriate. Edits will also be signed by the moderator making the change. Users who post content that needs to be edited will have action taken against them. Initially this will be a warning, but repeated offenses could result in stiffer penalties.

4) Deleting threads and posts ? Pure spam or troll posts will be deleted. Threads that are entirely offensive or detrimental to the community will be deleted. Deleting threads will be a last resort for cases where most posts would otherwise need to be edited or deleted to remove inappropriate content. We prefer locking and editing where possible. Users whose posts need to be deleted may or may not receive a warning before some sort of ban.

User Moderation

1) Warning members of a violation ? For isolated incidents, first time offences, or minor infractions, moderators will issue a warning to a user in the form of a Private Message (PM). Along with this, a note may be made in the users profile about the incident and warning issued. Warnings will be given at moderator discretion based on member behavior or the need to moderate a member's threads.

2) Temporarily banning a member (vacation) ? If a member receives multiple warnings, or commits a serious violation of our guidelines, the member will be temporarily barred from posting on the forum. A note will be made in the users profile about reasons and length of vacations. Initially vacations will be short (a week), but if a user has received multiple vacations, moderators can grant longer vacations (multiple weeks or months in extreme cases).

3) Banning a member (permaban) ? Members who have had many warnings and multiple vacations for the same offense, heavy spammers, bad traders, or those who have violated one or more US laws are eligible for a permanent ban from the Forums. Permanent bans will not be given lightly and only as a last resort for members who severely disrupt the community. Beyond usernames and email addresses, we may also ban IP addresses. Only Senior Moderators are given permission to permanently ban a member.

Any intentional use of any tool available to a moderator for anything other than appropriate moderation will result in the immediate demotion of that moderator. Depending on the severity of the action, banning may also be imposed at the discretion AnandTech. Decisions made by AnandTech in matters of this nature will be permanent, irrevocable, and not subject to debate.

In the course of evaluating and enforcing violations of member/posting guideline #13, or in any situation in which there is conflict between a member and a moderator (perceived or otherwise), only uninvolved moderators will handle making the final call on what (if any) action is taken. Our moderators are also encouraged to avoid moderation in threads they are active in unless absolutely necessary. These specific guidelines are in place to protect our moderators from accusations of personal bias in moderation.

In cases where members feel personal bias has been an issue, please create a thread in the Moderator Discussions sub-forum. Complaints in this area will be evaluated by our team of Senior Moderators.

Thank you very much for posting this. It's not one we usually see. It was new to me.


Senior member
May 25, 2020
1) No trolling, flaming or personally attacking members. Deftly attacking ideas and backing up arguments with facts is acceptable and encouraged. Attacking other members personally and purposefully causing trouble with no motive other than to upset the crowd is not allowed.
This rule really needs more elaboration IMO because in the CPU forums there seems to be an extreme lack of "backing up arguments with facts" and a certain Zen 5 speculation thread is just full of people getting infractions just trying to ask other users for their sources.

Like really when it comes to the trolling rule, if someone uses a bunch of bait statements like "cope" or "can you even read?", how does the person not saying that stuff get an infraction but not the other? It really feels like more and more users are doing everything they can to skirt the rules instead of actually following them, and it's become a game of getting other people in trouble.

Edit: I do feel I should elaborate a bit more; Its one type of feeling when I see mods enforce the normal rules like swearing, or more blatant trolling attempts. However it kinda circumvents the ignore feature when I constantly have to see mod warnings being posted over two people seemingly having an equal level discussion. I could be completely alone in this opinion and that's fine, but that Zen 5 thread has had the most borderline infractions I have ever seen on these forums. So to me who is seeing borderline discussions cause trouble it really starts to become confusing what is and isn't considered an argument or trolling. And it becomes a lot harder to post and engage with a thread because idk who I might accidentally upset.
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Forum Director & Omnipotent Overlord
Forum Director
Oct 8, 2000
I am going to give you the short version of this Zen 5 Speculation thread. People cannot just read a post from member
and say give me sources, give me proof, back it up. It a spec thread. Everyone is free to give their opinions of how Zen 5
may or may not pan out when its released, based on previous versions. So in speculation threads, posters are free from having to reveal sources, data
unless they choose to. We know there are some insiders here. Its up to them how much they may want to reveal, if anything at all.

We say attack the post, not the poster. Which means that if you don't like what a poster has to say about any particular speculation,
feel free to give your own version of it. Don't call that poster out and say reveal your sources. And don't answer just to be trolling.

When Zen 5 is released next month there will be the official thread and then people are free to ask for data, sources, etc.

A real part of this issue is that its an AMD titled thread. Some Intel "enthusiasts' try to come into the thread and troll the pro-AMD folks.
Not everyone but enough do and we mods know who they are and we do our best to limit the trolling.
The opposite does happen when the shoe is on the other foot. But for the time being I am answering in this manner because its Zen 5.

We know when members are getting trolled, even subtlety. We do our best to stop it. Which is why you are seeing the infractions and the multiple warning posts
that we mods keep having to remind everyone of.
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Senior member
May 25, 2020
Some of you guys really have a lot of guts to completely ignore the mod post i made about retailiating and name calling.
This is my last warning.

1. You will not call out Trolls, or call out another member PERIOD. The designation of "Troll" is limited to the moderating staff, and even then we will not actively call a member a Troll, until all facts and proof are reviewed.

So if we can't call then a troll what gives you guys the right to call someone a troll? So the next person to even use that word we will now get DOUBLE the infraction points without contest. Its a 2 for 1 deal now.

2. You are allowed to verbally engage with disagreements, but must be done so in a civil manner, and not a personal attack. I don't care if he is paid for or sponsored by X, that again is up to the Moderatoring staff to determine and from there, we will revoke access to the subsection / forum, as deemed necessary, but you (member) going hostile will only end bad for you, giving the offensive party member a win.

3. We are getting tired of the reports in regards to the same thing, hence why double infractions will be issued going forward now in regards to being offsive, which will put you on vacation from the forum really fast, and give us relief, so lets not go there.

4. There is a nice ignore member feature on the forum. If the member is offensive to you, then just ignore, don't get baited and left to chains. We moderators can not take sides, even if the side is against a suspected troll. That is not how forum moderatation works. Do don't pit us on a side we do not want to be on, but have to because YOU put us there.

This is my Last warning... all future reports if infractable will be DOUBLE points, and we will put you on vacation really fast.

Moderator Aigo

I will Lock this post for half a day for all members to VIEW this post.
Once reopened, we will go ahead with the 2 for 1 deal.
This moderator specifically says "don't get baited" in regards to the Zen 5 thread. So that means people posting bait is allowed and not considered trolling?

I really am just asking for clarification, not a long winded story. It just seems like the rules are getting a bit muddy and it saddens me to see people getting in trouble for having the same level of discussion as someone else. It feels like one person's definition of bait is completely arbitrary compared to another's.

How is someone posting bait not the same thing as trolling? Wouldn't trying to anger other users on the forum literally be a direct violation of global rules 1 as posted in this thread? And if yall think that bait isn't the same as trolling, it would *really* be nice for some clarification.

Edit: sorry I always feel the need to add on to my posts lol. But like this isn't something that is necessarily specific to a certain thread, it just happens more there. I also don't think its really a brand wars problem in itself, I have seen people that I have previously strongly disagreed with also seemingly randomly get hit by the trolling rules, and that doesn't make me feel good regardless.
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Forum Director & Omnipotent Overlord
Forum Director
Oct 8, 2000
No, you're kind of twisting things here.
Don't get baited means if you can't have anything good to say without trolling or attacking the poster, then stop. Leave, put the guy on ignore.
He/she/you are being triggered.

No one, as far as I can see is posting "bait" to try to get the members all riled up. If you think you actually see that, then report it to the mods via a
Reported Post. Come on, this is a spec thread and all reasonable thoughts/ideas are welcome.

I have got several members that don't like other members regardless of what is being posted. Its not bait. It's whatever the poster has posted.
I have had to tell members that they cannot post in the other teams titled threads because they cannot control themselves.

If you like, I will talk with aigomorla and Dapunisher to make a specific rule stickied in the CPU rules area, that covers discussion in the speculation
threads if you still have some confusion here.
  • Like


Super Moderator CPU Forum Mod and Elite Member
Super Moderator
Aug 22, 2001
Edit: sorry I always feel the need to add on to my posts lol. But like this isn't something that is necessarily specific to a certain thread, it just happens more there. I also don't think its really a brand wars problem in itself, I have seen people that I have previously strongly disagreed with also seemingly randomly get hit by the trolling rules, and that doesn't make me feel good regardless.
No one gets randomly hit for trolling. The moderation is consistent and adheres to the same guidelines every time. Your being unaware of what those members are communicating to the moderation team, or what their history of repeat offenses are is the reason for your perception of events. Members that receive multiple infraction points know damned well what they did to earn them. They stubbornly persist in the behavior anyways. There is nothing random about it. So please stop the armchair moderator hot takes, as you lack the information to properly evaluate moderator actions without that "behind the scenes" information and member history.

These Forum Guidelines apply to all forums. However, some forums e.g. the CPU forum have more specific or concise versions of these guidelines. Some are forum specific to address issues unique to that forum's dynamics.

1. First rule of fight club -Attack the post not the poster. No personal attacks. Badgering, pestering, callouts, name calling, and trolling other members all fall under this rule. Because they all require going after the person and not the content of the posts. If someone is incapable of making a cogent reply without bringing the poster into it? Don't reply. Someone is triggering you? Use the ignore feature. Going after them is not an option on these forums. But as was pointed out by the admin, some have decided they can go after anyone they have a grudge against or problem with. That is never going to end well here.

2. Vendor specific threads are safe spaces. Bringing in versus flame bait via bashing and trashing that vendor or extolling another vendor is not permitted.

3. No profanity.

These are the big 3. It is a technical forum and a much higher level of decorum is expected than in the social forums. Furthermore, due to the STRONG brand preferences of members, eliminating flame bait, which makes for flame wars, which derails discussions, is intrinsically beneficial to all.

To the more pointed issue being cited about backing up posts with FACTS. I keep having to explain this, and I feel like perhaps it needs to be written in crayon for some to get it. -

If the thread has SPECULATION in the title; no one has to back up anything with facts, cite sources, or defend their position against anyone else that does not like their content. Take everything written in a speculation thread with not a grain, or a pinch, but a huge dump truck full of salt. That should go without saying, but the unfortunate reality is that some are unwilling or unable to do so. Calling out, badgering, demanding evidence, name calling towards anyone making claims is not permitted. If you believe them or take them seriously? That's on you. As the "then I have a bridge to sell you" expression so succinctly illustrates, believing the claim requires you to be gullible. Don't be gullible.
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