The basic rule is that all participants must be polite to each other. Try to imagine that you are sitting in a living room with everyone else. Don't say anything you wouldn't say in that situation.
No name calling. Disagree with another person's words all you want, but don't insult the person.
Due to SI policy, political comments are off limits here, unless there is an issue that specifically affects Apple. See below for a bit more about this if you care.
It's all about having a civil discussion. And hey, let's be careful out there.
You've now read the rules. If you want to know what happens if you violate them, see "BANS," below.
OFF TOPIC POSTS
Off-topic posts are OK, unless they violate the rules as laid out above. We request that you put "OT" at the top of any posts that aren't related to Apple, its stock, or its competitors. Forgetting to use OT is not an offense that will get you banned. It will just make others shun you. ;-)
Please keep in mind that this forum is here to help people make better decisions about whether or not to invest in AAPL. But there is a kind of a collegial, dinner party atmosphere, and we do go off the reservation quite a bit.
Violators of the rules will usually receive a warning, and a second offense will probably result in a ban. In the case of especially egregious violations, a ban may come without warning.
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All decisions about bans are made by the moderator, who serves at the pleasure of the participants of the thread. You may feel free to provide public or private feedback, which may or may not be heeded.
Fleshing out the anti-politics policy
Having conferred with Brad via PM, I want to clarify this board's policy with respect to political discussions.
If a political issue affects Apple as a company more than it would most companies, it's fair game for discussion here. A hypothetical example would be if Congress were debating a bill that would make it illegal for anyone to download any media file to more than one device. Clearly, Apple would be affected a lot more by the outcome of such a debate than would, say, IBM, Dell, HP, etc.
If a political issue affects the macro economy in some way, but doesn't affect Apple any more than it would any other company, it is not a topic for discussion here.