Hey guys and welcome to the LPAssociation Forum Guide! We're very happy you signed up to the LPA and just in case this is your first time on an internet message board, thought we'd throw out a few tips and pointers to how the whole thing works. Hey, it could even be worth a read if you're a veteran, you might learn something new! There's not a whole lot to know, but we're going to run down a basic list of forum etiquette that will hopefully answer any questions you may have about how the forums work, so with that said, let's get started! ------------ Posting First and foremost, familiarize yourself with the forum rules. We don't have many - just a few simple rules to make sure the LPA is enjoyable for everyone. If you have any questions about the forum rules, please contact one of the staff members (instructions for contacting us are further down in the guide). Remember, if you are ever unsure if something is OK to post, please contact one of us. We're here to help and will be glad to answer any questions you have. While posting, you will have some options available to you to control text formatting, such as font, size, color, etc, and to insert images and videos. There are no specific rules regarding use of these (obviously, don't post graphic, explicit images such as porn), but use common sense. Posting something in size 24 bold red letters might sound like a great way to get your post noticed, but in reality, you will probably annoy others who will skip right over your post. Also, be mindful of the fact that we have a few different forum skins (check out the bottom left corner of the page to change them!) so while using a dark blue font might look fine on the LPA 4 skin, it will be unreadable on the LPA 8-Bit skin. If you don't use any color, a default color will be used which will change depending on the skin and will be readable no matter what. We also ask that you try to avoid double posting. What this means is don't have two posts in a row in the same thread. If you make a post, and then want to say something else before anyone else has posted, edit your post and add to it. -- Posting Functions Reply will allow you to simply begin typing a response to the thread you are in at that time. By clicking Reply With Quote on another members post will allow you to type a direct response to their post, by highlighting the text in your reply. Edit Post is a valuable tool that will allow you to modify any post you have already submitted. Simply click this button on any of your posts and you can re-word, correct a typo or add to any of your posts. Editing a post is the best way to avoid double posting in a thread. The Multi-Quote button allows you to select a number of posts to highlight in just one reply. Simply scroll through the thread and click this button on any post you want to reply to, you can do as many as you like, and then when you hit reply, all the posts will be in your text box ready to reply to. Who's Who? You'll notice different people have certain colors for their username and certain banners. Here is a summary of what they all are: LPA Super Member: Members with 3,000 posts. LPA Über Member: Members with 10,000 posts. LPA Addict: Members with 15,000 posts. LPA ???: Reach 40,000 posts and we'll give you your own custom user group with a title of your choice. Good luck! LPA VIP: Members who have donated to the site to help us out with our costs or who have helped us out in such a way that's gone above and beyond - it's our way of saying thanks. LPA Contributor: Members who are able to post news to the site. These are members who have reported a lot of news to the site for staff to post and who we now entrusted to post themselves. -- Staff User Groups LPA Team: Moderators who are able to close threads, edit and delete posts. They can also issue warnings & infractions and can answer any questions you have about the site or rules. LPA Admin: Site administrators who can do everything moderators do and then some. They can do things such as change your username (more on that later) or assist if you're having trouble logging into your account. While there are a lot of people with colors, LPA Team and LPA Administrators are the only groups who are staff and represent the site. Additionally, we occasionally hold contests and give winners their own custom usergroup for a period of time. They're not listed here, but if you see one and have any questions about who it is, just ask. Spelling, grammar, etc We understand that not everyone is a native speaker of English and will make some spelling and grammar mistakes. Heck, most of us are native English speakers and still make such mistakes. So we have no problem if your English isn't perfect, as long as you make your best effort, we'll be able to understand. Also, the LPA is not Twitter or a text message, so there's no need to try to limit your post to as few characters as possible. Please avoid all of the abbreviations like u, 2 instead of too, bcuz, etc. They just make a post difficult to read. In addition, MAKING A POST IN ALL CAPS is considered shouting and rude on the internet, so please try to avoid it. Warnings and Infractions This is the part we don't want to talk about, and the part you'll hopefully never have to worry about it, but we do need to address it. The LPA operates on a 3 strikes policy. If you make a post that breaks a rule, a staff member will issue an infraction, and you will be banned after 3 infractions. Staff members may also issue a warning, that is similar to an infraction, except it does not count towards your 3 strikes. This is done at staff discretion for lesser offenses, first offenses, or what appears to be truly inadvertent breaking of the rules. However, since warnings are given at staff discretion, there can't be a guarantee of what you'd get for breaking a rule - assume that all offenses would result in infractions, and if you get just a warning, you were lucky. Of course, the best way to avoid that is to not break the rules in the first place. If you receive an infraction (or warning) you will receive a private message from the staff member who issued it explaining why, and you can always reply to the PM if you have any questions. Signatures Signatures are fine, but please keep in mind that everyone else has to scroll past it every time you post. Please don't have huge images that are extremely tall or wide. Limitations are roughly 600 pixels wide and 400 pixels tall. The forum rules regarding post content applies to signatures too. No porn, sexually explicit photos, or links to download copyrighted material, etc. Name Changes If you wish to change your username on the forum, PM an admin and they'll be able to do for you as long as the username you want isn't already taken. We limit name changes to once every 3 months. In addition, we also request that for a week after you change your name, you have a line in your signature that says "Formerly known as _____" so everyone knows who you are. Reporting Posts If you see a post that you think is breaking the rules, click the Report Post button (the little triangle with an exclamation point in the bottom left corner of the post) and that will alert the staff. Once you report it, move on and pretend the post doesn't exist. Do not take matters into your own hands by replying to it, this will only add fuel to the fire and cause things to get out of hand. Hating/Bashing Other Fansites We view other LP fansites as friends, not competition, so we ask that our members do not bash or attack them on our forums, even if there's good reason to. If another fansite is openly attacking the LPA on their forums, let them. We would rather remain professional, take the high road and not bring our site down to that level. If another site is shamelessly copying and pasting our news or stealing our images, please privately contact the staff and we will handle it. Putting it out in the open on the forums is only bound to cause trouble. Contacting Us If you need to contact staff, you have a few options. If it's a general question about the site, your best bet may be the Feedback & FAQ forum. This way, all staff can see it so you will get an answer quicker, and other members will be able to see it, so your thread can serve as a reference for others if they have the same answer. If you wish to keep it private, you can send a private message to one of the staff members on this page. Only admins can assist with account related issues such as name changes. If for some reason you are unable to send a private message, you can e-mail us instead. Make sure to include your username in your message so we know who you are. ------------ We hope this was helpful to you! If you have any other questions use one of the methods listed above to contact us and we will be in touch as soon as we can! There's not too much to know; you'll pick up most of it as you go along, just use a little common sense and most importantly, have fun! Thanks for reading and enjoy your time on the LPA Forums!