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Niners Nation moderators and the site's community guidelines

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Next Monday, Niners Nation will turn eight years old, having been launched way back in December 2006. I still remember the optimism following that season. Then Norv Turner left, Jim Hostler took over at offensive coordinator, and things went to crap for a few years. Good times!

The site has obviously grown just a little bit over the years, and that has brought in all sorts of different personalities into the comments. For the most part, people do a good job of playing well with each other, but there are plenty of instances where people get a little too feisty for their own good.

We brought in moderators once before, but time got in the way for some, so I ended up handling the bulk of moderating duties. The last few weeks with the team in turmoil, it has become clear my life would be a lot easier bringing moderators back. There has been inconsistent discipline for bad behavior, and moderators will help with that. I spoke with a few people, and we have a new crew of four moderators that will help keep this place in one piece. They are:

ak4niner
El Shorts
General Patton
$20 on Joe vs Dan

We have been chatting over the last week to get on the same page, and that has helped me update the community guidelines. I've updated it with the following rules:

1. No ad hominem attacks - When you disagree with someone, you cannot simply attack their character or make some kind of personal attack. You must address the content of their arguments. This includes people calling out somebody for being a new member. Sometimes people are just signing up to troll, and sometimes people are only just now finding the site. Stick to the arguments being made, not the context of their membership at the site.

If you elect to do this, punishment will be as follows:

1. First time = warning 
2. Second time = 24 hour account suspension 
3. Third time = 1-week suspension 
4. Fourth time = Ban

2. No slurs - This covers racial, sexual and so forth. Additionally, there is to be no use of the word "retard" - it's offensive to many and you can make your point without using the word.

Punishment for this kind of usage will follow the four-step punishment system

3. No rooting for injuries to opposing players - This is completely low class and will not be tolerated. The punishment system will be the same four-step mention for the first two rules.

4. Swearing is NOT allowed except in game-day threads, and other specifically designated threads - If you feel the need to swear at somebody's response, stop, take a minute to re-think it and you'll find an intelligent argument to shut that person down.

Punishment will generally be more lenient as NN can live with these mistakes on a limited basis.

One thing connected to the first rule is how people treat new users. People frequently point to how long a person has been a member of the site as a reason that person's argument is not valid. That will not be tolerated. Yes, some people join so they can quickly troll. However, some people are only just finding the site for the first time. We have a growing community, but there are a lot of fans who are just starting to find Niners Nation. I do not want to run them off because they happen to disagree with you. Address the substance of their argument, NOT the length of their membership at the site.

The goal of this site is to create a fun place where people can get all their 49ers information, and enjoy each other's company to some extent. If you can't play well with others, there will be consequences, but hopefully people can handle themselves with the proper decorum.