USA TODAY Network CORAL Conversation Guidelines
We encourage and promote views that foster understanding, insight and civil discourse. We seek to offer viewpoints that represent various views on a particular topic. All views, respectfully presented and on topic, are welcome. Like any community, the online conversation flourishes only when our community members feel welcome and safe.
Please be polite. While it's OK to disagree with someone's ideas, personal attacks, insults, threats, hate speech, advocating violence and other violations are not tolerated and may result in immediate and permanent suspension of access to all or part of the USA TODAY Network. Personal attacks against our staff will be removed and threats against our staff involving imminent harm may be referred to a local law enforcement official.
Registration ensures that all users leaving a comment are legitimate users (not bots) are at least 16 years old and confirms that you accept our terms and conditions.
Comments made by users are their own thoughts and viewpoints and not necessarily those of USA Today Network. When you upload, post or submit any content, you represent to us that you have all the necessary legal rights to upload, post or submit such content and it will not violate any law or the rights of any person.
We reserve the right to suspend and/or ban users and/or remove comments that, in our sole judgment, infringe on other users' ability to take part in dialogue on our website in a safe and welcoming environment. The following, in addition to our Community Rules, are prohibited:
- Threats of violence or intimidation.
- Personal attacks, name-calling, abuse or harassment of other community members, subjects of our news coverage or our staff.
- Hate speech or language that abuses, disparages or discriminates on the basis of race, religion, nationality, ethnicity, gender or gender identity, sexual preference, age, region, disability, etc.
- Obscenities, vulgarities or any variation of such that suggests, connotes or contains indecent, offensive, pornographic or lewd speech, or ALL-CAPS shouting and punctuation marks.
- Advertisements/promotions, and fundraising/solicitations of donations.
- Spam (including multiple posts that contain the same or similar content).
- Plagiarized and/or copyrighted material of a third party.
- Off-topic comments, especially those that devolve into a separate conversation.
- Content that is false, promotes or advocates unfounded conspiracy theories, is altered, libelous or otherwise serves to misinform or disparage others.
- You must choose a username that complies with these rules: Usernames may not contain swear words or vulgar terms, be offensive or threatening or impersonate another person, including using another person’s name as part of your username. We also ask you to change your username if it has an offensive or negative association, such as a username including racist, misogynist or insulting or intimidating words.
- If you see a violation of these Conversation Guidelines, report it by clicking the "report" button beneath the comment in question
If you have ideas on how to improve the conversation or our community, contact us here Feedback Form or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Q: Where can I comment?
A: To comment on a story page or blog post, make sure you are signed into your account. Then click on the view comments icon in blue located beneath the headline of a story or at the bottom of the story. A comment box will appear for you to post your comment or view others' comments.
Q. Why do I have to register?
A. The registration process serves to facilitate the development of our online community and ensures that members take responsibility for their writings. Registration ensures that all users leaving a comment are legitimate users (not bots), confirms that you accept our terms, and that you are at least 16 years old. Once you register your account you may manage your account here.
Do I need to create an account to comment?
A: Yes. To add a comment, you'll need to register with us here . You do not have to be a subscriber to comment but you have to register an account. You can also get an account by clicking "sign up" in the top right corner of our site or at the top of the comment space. After registration, you can manage your account preferences here. Any usernames meant to impersonate or personally attack others or that include vulgarity will result in a ban.
Q: Can everyone see my comments?
A: Yes! When you submit a comment, it will be visible to everyone on the site.
Q: How do I report an inappropriate or abusive comment?
A: Below each comment you will see an option to report. We track reports of violations of our Conversation Guidelines and Community Rules and will delete comments that violate these rules, and ultimately may ban users whose violations are dangerous or extreme.
Q: What is the "respect" button?
A: The respect button is a thoughtful way of acknowledging a commenter’s viewpoint.
Q: What is a “featured” comment and how can my comment be featured?
A: A featured comment is one selected by our editorial staff to appear at the top of a comment thread with a "featured" badge. We feature comments based on thoughtfulness and insight. To earn the badge, keep doing what you're doing: being civil and respectful, respecting other viewpoints and following these Conversation Guidelines.
Q: Why can't I see my comment? I received a notification saying it was under review.
A: Some comments may be pre-moderated, meaning they will need to be approved by the moderator before being displayed on the story. We may be slower to moderate comments made after close of regular business hours. Look for your comment the next day.
Q: Why was my comment removed?
A: Please take a moment to review these Conversation Guidelines and our Community Rules. Most comments are removed because they are deemed to be abusive or contain hate speech or spam, or have other significant violations of our Conversation Guidelines or Community Rules. We have zero tolerance for people who try to get around these rules or our list of banned words by using alternate spellings, abbreviations or special characters. Instead, we encourage and promote comments that foster understanding, insight and civil discourse.
Q: How long does a suspension last?
We reserve the right to suspend and ban users and/or remove comments that, in our sole judgment, infringe on other users' ability to take part in dialogue on our website in a safe and welcoming environment. Suspensions typically begin at 1 hour and escalate to 7 days after repeat or extreme violations.
We reserve the right to ban users immediately when in our sole discretion we believe that constructive conversation is not the user’s intent or that there is a threat to a person’s safety, including threats to our journalists. A threat involving imminent harm may be referred to a local law enforcement official. Bans are permanent and are non-reversable.
Q. Are there any age restrictions on providing comments?
A. Our site is not intended for use by children under the age of 16.
If you are under 16, please do not submit any comments to us —or ask your parents or guardian to comment on your behalf.
Q. I’m located in the UK or EU and was not able to sign in or register to comment. Why not?
A. If you are in the UK or EU you can view our content but currently, we are not permitting comments. We are working on implementing this feature soon, so check back with us periodically.
Q. How long will my comment be posted?
Q: What if my question wasn't answered here?
A. Contact us here: Feedback Form or email email@example.com.