As of today, July 25, 2013, the Moderators at Hammock Forums have made the decision to add another topic to the forbidden topics section of the TOS. We are not exactly thrilled to be adding another rule to the TOS, but the topic has reached the tipping point in its divisiveness and we feel it needs to be done.
The new addition to the forbidden list is: Firearms and their accompanying accessories.
This is IN NO WAY a reflection of the beliefs of the Moderators of Hammock Forums concerning firearms. Not that it should matter, but on this topic it is important to understand that among the current Moderators here we have an active duty member of the US Military, an owner of a firearms training business, and an enthusiast among our ranks. All of us came to the same decision on this issue; it is no longer healthy for the forum at large to have these discussions.
Arguments can, and have been made about firearms being applicable to some of the things we do with our hammocks. However, what little information is presented is very much offset by people making political points on both sides of the issue. Emotions run high and bring folks that were once friendly, into combative postures. This is not what we strive for here on HF, so we are taking action.
This is not a knee-jerk reaction to a problem, nor is this the result of any currently active thread. This is a discussion that has been going on with the Moderators for some time now. We really try to avoid adding rules to the TOS, but on some issues we simply must act to preserve our tranquil little corner of the internet. There are many hundreds of forums whose primary topic is firearms. A large chunk of those sites are frequented by outdoor enthusiasts. Those sites are most likely a much better source of information about hanging with firearms, so we will choose to focus on what we all (as a group) know much more about: hammocks.
Existing threads that have managed to stay open for postings, will be closed so no additional postings can be made. However, the threads will remain viewable as they do sometimes contain good information. Any new threads or posts that discuss firearms and/or their immediate accessories will be deleted by the Moderators without notification. This rule applies to all parts of Hammock Forums, including the Donating Member Section.
Thank you for your understanding concerning this change. We (HF) are sad to see this addition to the forbidden list, but our focus on hammocks must take priority.
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.