The (unofficial) forum for Harvard Extension School Students

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A positive forum for socializing with fellow Harvard Extension School students and alumni.

ESF Forum Rules

The Extension Student Forum "ESF" or "ESF Online forums" is intended to provide a warm, friendly atmosphere for the ESF and HES student community. In order to maintain order and a sense of community, all users should read and follow these Rules. By using the ESF Online forums and participating in discussion, private messaging, or viewing, users are affirming their willingness to and hereby agree to comply with all Forum Rules, Terms, and Policies. These Rules have been created to provide you with information about what you can expect as a forum user, what is expected of you, and to answer some questions relating to forum moderation that you may encounter during your use of the ESF Online forums.
  1. Terms of Service
  2. Rules of Conduct
  3. Reprimand Policy
  4. Suspension & Appeals
  5. Permanent Banning & Appeals
  6. Complaints
  7. ESF Policies
Rules of Conduct
The following rules of conduct are to be followed at all times when using the ESF Online forums. Breach of these rules will result in users being reprimanded as per the reprimand policy outlined below.
  1. You must have an active ESF Online account to post on our forum. If you are suspended or banned from ESF, you will not be able to post on the ESF Online forums. If you are suspended or banned from the ESF Online forums, your account will be reviewed and may be terminated with future registration prohibited.
  2. Be respectful toward others at all times. The purpose of the ESF Online forums is to provide a platform for the exchange of HES related topics, ideas, and thoughtful discussion. Occasionally there may be conflicts that arise when users voice opinions. Forum users are expected to be courteous when disagreeing with others. Anything that goes above a discussion and overly negative or belligerent will be removed.
  3. Ranting is prohibited. A rant is a post that is often filled with angry and counterproductive comments. A free exchange of ideas is essential to building a strong sense of community and is helpful in developing the community. Rants are disruptive, and incite flaming and trolling. Please post your thoughts in a concise and clear manner while avoiding going off on rambling tangents.
  4. Personal attacks are prohibited. Commonly known as flaming, personal attacks are posts that are designed to personally berate or insult another forum user. Posts of this nature are not conductive to the community spirit that ESF promotes. As such, this kind of behavior will not be tolerated.
  5. Trolling is prohibited. Trolling is a defined as a post that is deliberately designed for the purpose of angering and insulting other users in an attempt to incite retaliation or an emotional response. Posts of this nature are disruptive, often abusive, and do not contribute to the sense of community that ESF promotes.
  6. Racism and discrimination are prohibited. Racism, gender stereotyping, hate speech, and sexism are not permitted on the ESF Online Forums. Derogatory posting that includes race, religion or sexual preference based personal attacks and trolling can result in immediate suspension and banning of forum posting privileges.
  7. Discussion of real life religion and politics is prohibited. Discussion of real life religion and politics is strictly prohibited on the ESF Online forums. Discussions of this nature often creates animosity between forum users due to real life political or military conflicts. ESF promotes the growth of the community where equality is at the forefront. Nationalist, religious or political affiliations are not part of ESF, and should not be part of discussion on the ESF Online forums.
  8. Use of profanity is prohibited. The use of profanity is prohibited on the ESF Online forums. This includes the partial masking of letters using numbers or alternate symbols, and any attempts at bypassing the profanity filter.
  9. Posting of personal information is prohibited. The posting of personal information, or "doxing"/"doxxing", including but not limited to personal contact numbers, email addresses, account names and passwords, home addresses and real life names is strictly prohibited. ESF respect the right of our users to privacy, and will not tolerate the divulging of real life personal details.
  10. Posting of private ESF communication is prohibited. The posting of private communication between the ESF Team members, Moderators, or Administrators of the forum is prohibited. ESF respects the right of our users to privacy and as such you are not permitted to publicize private correspondence (including support ticket responses and emails) received from any member of ESF.
  11. Discussion of warnings and bans is prohibited. Such matters shall remain private between ESF and the involved user. Questions or comments concerning warnings and bans will be conveyed through email or private messaging. ESF respects the right of our users privacy and as such you are not permitted to publicize private correspondence (including support ticket responses and emails) received from any member of ESF staff.
  12. Discussion of forum moderation is prohibited. The discussion of ESF Online forum moderation actions generally leads to flaming, trolling and baiting of our forum moderators. As such, this type of discussion is strictly prohibited under the forum rules. If you have questions regarding the actions of a moderator, please contact an administrator.
  13. Spamming is prohibited. Spam is defined as the repetitive posting of the same topic or nonsensical post that has no substance and is often designed to annoy other forum users. This can include the words "first", "go back to (insert other thread name)" and other such posts that contribute no value to forum discussion. Spamming also includes the posting of ASCII art within a forum post, or the practice of "thread necromancy" which involved bumping of old threads for no justifiable reason.
  14. Pyramid quoting is prohibited. Pyramid quoting is a response to a forum thread that contains the quotes of four or more previous posters, sometimes with additional spaces added unnecessarily. This kind of posting often distorts the layout of the forums and can cause issues with readability for some users.
  15. Excessive bumping is prohibited. Excessive bumping of posts to alter the order of the thread listing on the forum is prohibited. Please review the sticky (announcement) threads in in each category for specific details.
  16. Posting about bugs and exploits is prohibited. Bugs and exploits should be reported through the proper channels. Bugs should be brought to the attention of ESF through Private Messaging to an Admin or Moderator. Discussions about unverified issues can cause unnecessary panic in the community. When there is an issue that the ESF Online community needs to be aware of, it will be communicated via an official statement from ESF after thorough investigation.
  17. Redundant and re-posted threads will be locked. As a courtesy to other forum users, please search to see if there is a thread already open on the topic you wish to discuss. If so, please place your comments there instead. Multiple threads on the same subject clutter up the forums needlessly, causing good feedback and ideas to be lost. Please keep discussions regarding a topic to a single thread.
  18. Impersonation of another party is prohibited. Forum users are strictly prohibited from impersonating any other party on the ESF Online forums. This includes but is not limited to ESF Administrators, ESF Moderators, ESF Sponsors, and other forum users. This also includes suggesting that a member of ESF will perform a task for you.
  19. New user bashing will not be tolerated. New members of the ESF Online community are encouraged to use, but are not restricted to one thread only. This forum is specifically designed to provide a platform for those who are new to the ESF and HES community to ask questions and learn more about ESF. More experienced forum users are encouraged to participate by assisting new users with helpful and courteous responses. All flaming, trolling and posts of a derogatory nature will be deleted, and will be considered a breach of the forum rules.
  20. All posts must be related to ESF Online. Posts regarding other companies and products or services are prohibited and any content of this nature will be removed. Posts regarding other or off topic issues are permitted in "The Lounge" for the purposes of discussion only.
  21. Posting advertisements is prohibited. Posts discussing or linking to online auction sites or other sales sites that offer goods or services for real life currency are prohibited. ESF official sponsors are permitted to make posts and may be conducted through ESF Admins or Moderators only.
  22. Posting regarding RMT (Real Money Trading) is prohibited. Posts discussing, linking to, or advertising RMT, including but not limited to the sale of in items, assets, currency, accounts for real life money are strictly prohibited.
  23. Post constructively. Negative feedback can be very useful to further improve ESF Online and HES provided that it is presented in a civil and factual manner. All users are encouraged to honestly express their feelings regarding ESF Online and HES and how it can be improved. Posts that are non-constructive, insulting or in breach of the rules will be deleted regardless of how valid the ideas behind them may be. Users are also reminded that posting with a lack of content also constitutes non-constructive posting.
  24. Re-opening locked topics is prohibited. Recreating or re-opening a thread that has been closed by a moderator is prohibited. Threads that have been closed by a moderator have been closed for the benefit of the community. Re-opening a locked thread will result in its removal and potential banning.
  25. Off-topic posting and/or thread Hi-jacking is prohibited. Off-topic posting is permitted within reason, as sometimes a single comment may color or lighten the tone of discussion. However, excessive posting of off-topic remarks in an attempt to derail or hi-jack a thread may result in the thread being locked, or a forum warning being issued to the off-topic poster. All off-topic discussions should take place in "The Lounge".
  26. Ban evasion is prohibited. Forum suspensions and bans are issued when a user grossly violates the forum rules. While they are rarely issued, they are applied with the community's best interests in mind. Attempts to bypass a suspension or ban via the use of alternate accounts will result in additional action, and in some instances may result in the permanent revocation of forum posting privileges across all accounts. Similarly, having another forum user post on your behalf if you are unable to do so may result in an extension of your suspension or ban, as well as the user who does so also receiving similar reprimand regardless of their warning history.
  27. Please use the correct language when posting on the forums. The default language for posting on the ESF Online forums is English. Please use English when posting as a courtesy to other forum users, unless the forum channel is specifically created for discussion in another language as part of our localized language specific sub-forums.
  28. Posts that distort the forum layout are prohibited. Posts that are deliberately designed to distort the layout of the ESF Online forums, or character names that are of an inappropriate length and stretch the forums will be removed. This kind of behavior is not conducive to the community spirit that ESF promotes, and posts of this nature will be deleted. Users who engage in this type of behavior may face temporary suspension or permanent revocation of their forum posting privileges.
  29. Abuse of ESF moderators. ESF operate a zero tolerance policy on abuse of ESF moderators. This includes but is not limited to personal attacks, trolling, "outing" of ESF moderator and the use of any formal identities when referring to the aforementioned parties.
  30. Rumor mongering is prohibited. Rumor threads and posts which are based off no actual solid information and are designed to either troll or annoy other users will be locked and removed. These kinds of threads and posts are detrimental to the wellbeing and spirit of the ESF Online Community, and can create undue panic among forum users, as well as adding to the workload of our moderators.
  31. Posting of inappropriate content is prohibited. The posting of pornography, discriminatory remarks which are sexually explicit, harmful, threatening, abusive, defamatory, obscene, hateful, racially or ethnically offensive as well as excessive obscene or vulgar language, posts which discuss or illustrate illegal activity, or an instance of providing links to sites that contain any of the aforementioned is strictly prohibited on the ESF Online forums.
  32. Posting of chat logs is prohibited. The posting of chat logs between parties is prohibited on all forum channels of the ESF Online forums.
Reprimand Policy
The ESF Team operates a tiered system of warnings and associated forum suspensions of various lengths, depending on the number of transgressions of the rules. The list below shows the structure of our warning and suspension policy. Please be aware that if a transgression of the rules is sever enough, this policy may be bypassed completely in favor of permanent revocation of a forum user's posting privileges and is up to the sole discretion of ESF administrators.
Coupled with this listing, leniency may be applied when issuing a posting suspension if a period of more than 12 months has elapsed between the current warning and any previous action. This leniency lies entirely at the discretion of the ESF Admin Team.
Suspension & Appeals
Temporary suspension of posting privileges occurs in line with the above laid out reprimand policy. The duration of a suspension increases every time they are issued due to the accumulation of forum warnings. Forum users are fully entitled to appeal against any actions taken that result in a warning or suspension of forum posting privileges. Appeals can be made by sending a private message to site administrators with the character that has received reprimand. Full justification for the behavior that caused the issue of the reprimand, plus a solid case for the reinstatement of forum posting privileges must be presented in this private message. The ESF Team will make a decision based on the case presented. If this decision is unsatisfactory for the user, then they may request escalation, where a final decision will be made by the ESF administrators. Decisions regarding the revocation or reinstatement of forum posting privileges lie solely with the ESF Team, and any decisions made are final.
Permanent Banning & Appeals
A permanent ban is only issued in severe cases where a forum user has grossly violated our rules. Users who are permanently banned from posting. Decisions regarding permanent forum bans lie solely with the ESF Administrative Team, and any decisions made are final.
If any forum user has an issue or complaint regarding the conduct of our ESF moderators, the ESF Admin Team can be reached by sending a private message directly to an administrator.