Terms of Service for HammockForums.net
Hammock Forums Terms of Service In October 2006, some members from whiteblaze.net created HammockForums.net to be the go-to source for hammock information. HF has always taken pride in its helpfulness, friendliness, innovation, and overall positive attitude. To continue in this tradition, we’ve created the following rules for participation here.
Please PM or email an Administrator or Moderator with any questions or concerns. Administrators and Moderators be identified by red usernames, and often have useful forum links in our signature blocks.
I. Family Friendly. Hammock Forums is a family friendly site. This means that our topics, language and treatment of each other are what you'd want your kids to see. We're not a bunch of prudes...we just think that the internet has enough places where that behavior is tolerated, and this particular site shouldn't be one of them.
II. Be Respectful. This is not negotiable. We treat each other with respect at Hammock Forums. This is a great community where the norm is to support others in their ideas and projects (including respectful critiques), and not assume offense where none is intended...and therefore not to flame, call names, or create friction in our threads. It's often easy to get frustrated over someone's post and type a quick reply to "set them straight." If the original post is out of line and the follow-up is calm and respectful, then it is appropriate for well-established members to help newbies learn our norms. However, we will not show a lack of respect for each other. Disagreement is fine; disrespectful behavior is not. Please make it easier on the community and police your own posts. Since intent is hard to gauge on the internet, please start by giving the benefit of the doubt if the post is not clearly offensive.
We also treat other sites with respect. Politely referring folks to the best source of hammocking info on the net is absolutely encouraged. Using Hammock Forums to foster a spam campaign against another site is not. Doing it in the name of Hammock Forums is entirely inappropriate and misrepresents what this community stands for.
No one speaks for Hammock Forums but the HF staff. The members here have created a valuable source of information and comaraderie. As such, many folks get passionate about the site and the community...and even protective of our hobby. We appreciate that. However, taking direct action on behalf of HF, without first discussing it with the HF staff, is neither required nor appreciated. This includes attempts to profit from HF's material as well as representing the forum on other sites.
III. Stay On-Topic. This is a moderated site about hammocks. Off-topic posts will be removed from the hammock subforums.
HF was started to become the single best source of hammock information on the internet. Our goal is to provide a respectful forum for hammock enthusiasts, and to ensure that it runs smoothly…not to grow the forum, nor to provide a friendly discussion forum for general outdoor enthusiasts. Discussion of knives, stoves, paddling, backpacks and other non-hammock related issues detracts from our primary objective. Excellent information on all of these topics can be found on dozens of other sites around the internet...but only this site can claim to have the most experts on hammocks in the world and we plan to keep that focus.
All threads not directly related to hammocks will be moved to the Donating Members section. Fewer posts, but higher quality ones focused on our primary mission area, is a perfectly acceptable outcome of this policy. Please note that if you are not a donating member, you will not have access to a thread you started that gets moved to the off-topic area. You may either participate on topic in the free access areas or donate to get access.
This policy is not open for debate, so please do not email the moderators with requests that we run this forum like others you frequent.
=== IV. Political, Religious and Controversial Posts. Hammock Forums has a strict rule against political, religious, and firearm related posts. This isn't about First Amendment rights but about keeping this particular site respectful and on-topic. The moderators will delete such posts, often without notification to the poster.
This normally applies to issues that most members can agree are contentious...gun rights and carry laws, differences in religion, political elections and candidates, etc. As the site has grown, other topics have begun to generate more political posts...including military appreciation threads. No matter what we think about the soldiers, the military's role in society and the proper level of support for its members are certainly political viewpoints. If we allow HF members to post support for the military, it would only be fair to let the differing opinions be posted as well...and that would quickly degenerate into political discussion, and probably result in a heated and emotional thread that would spill over into the other subforums (as we experienced on whiteblaze.net before starting this site). Since HF's mission is to provide a friendly community to discuss hammocks, discussion of the military detracts from our primary objective. Therefore, we will consider threads about the military to be political in nature, and will remove them accordingly.
Such policies are not geared toward restricting anyone's freedom of speech and they're not made from any sense of political correctness. We started HF to discuss hammocks and we plan to maintain that singular focus as much as possible. All of Hammock Forums' mods are in agreement - no matter what we think about the military or its members, HammockForums.net is not the proper place to discuss it.
=== V. Donations and Donating Members Roundtable. Hammock Forums is operated on a completely volunteer basis. As such, we offer an option for members to help cover the server and bandwidth costs through an annual donation. As a reward, donating members get access to a Roundtable Off-Topic section where non-hammock topics can be discussed. Semantics aside, this is not meant to be a subscription for additional access – we’d be perfectly content if the only content on HF were hammock-related – it’s merely a reward for donating members to further participate in the community they helped to create.
The following rules apply to the Donating Members Roundtable:
A. The Roundtable is for open discussion of almost any topic. Please be sure to keep the discussions about hammocks and hammock gear in the forum where non-donating members will have access. The Roundtable is for non-hammock related discussion only.
B. No political or religious discussion, no foul or abusive language, and no posting or linking to nudity, pornography or any other subject that may be NSFW (Not Safe For Work).
C. All discussions will be kept civil.
D. Please don't be offended if a moderator removes one of your posts from this section. Such decisions will be entirely at the discretion of the moderators.
===VI. The Marketplace. Hammock Forums offers a Marketplace for members to sell their personal gear or to post about a piece of gear they’re willing to buy. The following rules apply to the Marketplace:
A. You must have a minimum of 50 posts before starting a new For Sale thread. Bypassing this rule by posting rapidly to raise your post count is not allowed, and will result in loss of access to the Marketplace forums. There is no minimum for posting in the 'Want To Buy (WTB)' subforum.
B. Items listed in the marketplace must be related to outdoors gear.
C. Items listed in the marketplace should be listed with a selling price. No auction-style posts, no bidding on items, or linking to auctions.
D. Do not post links to websites that offer referral bonuses or kickbacks.
E. When items have sold, please reply to the thread and mark them sold.
F. No off topic discussions are allowed in FS or WTB threads. Off topic discussion will be deleted at the moderators discretion.
G. Firearm sales are not allowed.
H. No 'I'm sending money to family or friends' payments are allowed.
I. Do not play "price police" and make a public post in another member's thread about where a product can be found at a lower price. A simple Private Message to the seller may be helpful, though.
J. Buyers must always make an "I'll Take It" type post in the thread where the sale is advertised. This creates a public record of the intent. Posts *always* over-ride PM inquiries when there is a debate.
K. Vendors and resellers are not welcome to post their sales in the Marketplace. Dumping extra inventory, even if it’s a good deal for HF’s members, violates the essentially non-commercial nature of our site.
L Hammock Forums Marketplace Rules must be read, AND followed, in order to maintain access to the Marketplace. Members who disregard these rules will face suspension of their access to the marketplace for an undetermined amount of time, at the Hammock Forums staff discretion.
Expanded Marketplace Guidelines -
1. Use thoughtful caution when purchasing. Consider how long has the member been on the forum, and the amount of the transaction.
2. Communicate clearly, frequently, and calmly. This eliminates frustration for both buyers and sellers.
3. As per rule 8 - Never ever use the 'I'm sending money to family or friends' payment options when purchasing. This does not automatically supply the shipping address to the seller, and it strictly limits the buyer's options for any refund if there is a problem with the transaction.
4. Consider using a shipping method that can offer tracking or delivery confirmation. USPS Priority is a good option for U.S. addresses.
The Fine Print -
- Hammock Forums is not responsible for transactions or goods exchanged.
- If there is a dispute, please PM one of the moderators.
- The Marketplace forums are meant for individuals selling surplus or unwanted gear only. It is not a place for members to start their small business endeavors.
- Hammock Forums welcomes those who wish to offer a hammock related item or service to the other members of the forum. Those wishing to offer a hammock related service or product should first contact one of the moderation team to make your intentions known and then post relevant threads in the Other Vendors and Services subforum.
L. Group Buys are a type of sale in which items are purchased at a volume discount and these savings are passed on to those who wish to participate. The Group Buy Organizer (GBO) will administer the group buy, including such tasks as collecting member orders, accepting payments, placing the volume order, and packing and shipping the deliveries…but must do so without profit. In general group buys should following these guidelines:
1. Group buy prices must be the actual cost of the item or items being offered.
2. Buyers must be charged actual shipping costs. The GBO should remember PayPal fees and similar, to be added to the total cost of the order with no mark up. A small fee, totaling no more than .50 per order, may be applied to recoup costs for supplies such as printer ink, labels, packaging materials, etc.
3. Accepted payment methods (cash, PayPal, check) are up to the GBO.
4. To ensure that Group Buys abide by these guidelines, any thread started in the 'Group Buy' subforum must be approved by a moderator before it appears in public view.
5. Since running a Group Buy requires that HF place a measure of trust, GBOs must have a minimum of 100 posts establishing a record of good standing on the forum.
6. Caveat emptor (buyer beware). Hammock Forums is not responsible for the outcome of a group buy or for mediating any disputes between the GBO and the participants. As a buyer, please protect yourself by ensuring that you trust the GBO before conducting business with him or her. As a GBO, please ensure that you conduct the transactions honorably or you may be banned from the site.
=== VII. Vendors. One of Hammock Forums’ strengths is the close interaction with our community’s cottage gear manufacturers. As such, we welcome vendors and are proud of the role we’ve played in helping so many small business owners get started.
A. Hammock Forums is a place for the free and impartial exchange of ideas, and any direct involvement in a vendor's operations calls that impartiality into question. Therefore, HF threads will not be used to conduct transactions for businesses. Members are still encouraged to help other members by helping with modifications, sewing DIY gear, etc...even for a small fee. Moderators will use their discretion to determine if a member's "help" has become a business. If so, the moderators will request that the member find another means to conduct transactions, and the member will be subject to these vendor guidelines.
B. For these guidelines, a vendor includes someone who consistently sells gear for profit and publicly advertises the fact. A member who occasionally makes gear for other members, even for a small fee, is not considered a vendor. A vendor is not restricted to the owner of the business; representatives, sales personnel, and anyone receiving compensation from the company are considered vendors. Moderators will use their discretion in applying this definition.
C. Vendors will clearly identify their associations with businesses in their signature blocks, preferably with website links.
D. Product and sales announcements, and discussing your products are encouraged. Product and sales announcements must be made in your own sub-forum where possible. Commenting on your products is fine in the general discussion forums, but please do this with discretion and do not allow it to become spam. Please ensure your posts in the general forums add useful information to the discussion; posts that are nothing more than advertisements may be removed at the discretion of the moderators.
E. Vendors will not directly criticize another vendor or their products. This includes asking pointed questions with the intent to highlight shortcomings.
F. Vendors will not discuss their own products in threads or forums devoted to other vendors or their products. A short answer to a question posed by a member is acceptable, but if the user continues to derail the thread then please address it by Private Message, email, or begin a new thread in your own sub-forum.
G. Vendor subforums are located in the on-topic hammock area. Therefore, vendors are only welcome to market their hammock-related products on Hammock Forums. All threads in the vendor subforums must be hammock related. Vendors are free to answer questions in the Donating Member off-topic forums about gear, but must refrain from marketing products there.
H. Unless you are a source manufacturer of a hammock related product, or your mix of products centers around a hammock specific product manufactured and sold by your company, HF does not allow the marketing activities of retailers. You are welcome to post and take part in discussions, but please refrain from soliciting HF members in the public threads. Any abusive PMing or emailing of product offerings will not be tolerated and your membership shall be revoked if such activities are reported to the moderators or administrators of this site.
I. Vendors must maintain normal 'Donating Member' status on the forum.
Note: These rules are not intended to restrict members from selling gear in the "For Sale" forum unless the member is running a business, promoting his products in the other forums, etc.
=== VIII. Copyright. Hammock Forums assumes copyright to all material posted on HammockForums.net.
A. Hammock Forums, HammockForums.net, HF, and the orange sun with black hanger HF logo are copyrighted material. Such material is not appropriate for use by individuals without express permission of the HF moderating team.
B. Many users have created T-shirt and patches based on the HF logo to commemorate a hang-out or local area. In these cases, please submit the design to an HF moderator so we can ensure it is family-friendly and consistent with our community's values.
C. Hammock Forums will not honor requests to delete a user's material when he or she leaves the forum. This disrupts the flow of conversation in the threads.
IX. Charities. Hammock Forums recognizes the important role played by charities in society, but we also try very hard to maintain the singular focus on hammocks. Therefore, requests for charitable donations are not appropriate for this forum.
X. Acceptance of Terms of Service. Participation at this site implies acceptance of these Terms of Service. If you do not agree with the terms, please do not participate here. The moderators reserve the right to change the terms at any time and without notification.