Index to Help-Pages
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       Personal Messaging
    Posting Topics and Replies
      Guidelines for Posting
       Getting the best results
    Personal Messages (PM)
    Event Calendar
    RootsChat Moderating Team
    Search RootsChat
    FAQs, Tips an Hints

The customs that users have evolved on forums and chatrooms generally apply here in RootsChat. No-one is born knowing them, we pick it up as we go along, so don't be embarrassed if you find you are not following them all.

Here are a few pointers to help you out:

  • First and foremost:
    You agree, through your use of this RootsChat forum, that you will not post any material which is false, defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, vulgar, hateful, harassing, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, invasive of a living person's privacy, or otherwise contrary to law.
    From RootsChat Terms of Use

  • RootsChat discourages flaming. What is flaming? Flaming is treating others rudely online. Sometimes you might offend someone unintentionally, or they may offend you. Do not attack back, report it to a moderator who will deal with the situation. To contain the heat, the best response usually is no response at all.

  • Avoid writing messages using all capitals. IT LOOKS LIKE YOU'RE SHOUTING!

  • Be sparing with capital letters in topic titles.
    Apart from the "shouting" aspect, it has been brought to our attention, that many Internet Service Providers (ISPs) will block e-mails with too many capitals in the title, as potential SPAM

    Any e-mail notification from RootsChat includes the topic title.
    Therefore some ISPs will suppress these notifications.
    For further details, please see
    RootsChat Topic: >>----- Guidelines for Postings / Netiquette -----<<, Reply #2

    THe moderators may edit titles to remove excess capital letters.

  • Here is a second reason to avoid too many capitals in titles:
    It makes it easier for everybody to recognise the SURNAME

  • Be as clear as possible, HOW you mean what you've written.
    A face-to-face converstion includes facial expressions and body language. This is missing in a written forum conversation. To add humor and personality to your messages, and to help convey your meaning you can use smileys

  • Keep your communications to the point. Some people pay for Internet access by the hour. The longer it takes to read your messages, the more it may cost them. Remember, if you are asking for someone's help, you would like them to read your message.

  • Remember that anything you post on RootsChat can be read by other members and visitors to the site. Our pages are indexed by search engines, that's how a lot of new members find their way here.

  • When replying to a thread, stick to the topic. Don't indiscriminately post unrelated comments, or worse.

  • Please do not include personal contact details in postings.
    This includes e-mail addesses, postal addresses, telephone numbers, etc.

    The moderators will delete personal data.
    Please use the Personal Messages (PM) system for exchanging personal data.

    For further details, please see
    RootsChat Topic: >>----- Guidelines for Postings / Netiquette -----<<, Reply #4

  • Please do not quote Personal Messages (PM) in your replies to topics.
    As the name says, Personal Messages (PM) are personal and private !
    Replies containing such quotes will be deleted by the moderators.

  • Please do not post requests asking for help to find (possibly) living relatives or friends.
    RootsChat is a forum for searching for ancestors. Anything posted on the internet is in the public domain where anybody can see this information. To protect people and their identities we do not encourage the posting of information about people who are or maybe still living.
    Even with permission from the subject of a post we would seriously advise against giving too much information as to betray their identity.

    You can find some tips for searching for living people on these RootsChat topics:
    RootsChat Topic: Searching for living relatives and Rootschat
    RootsChat Topic: Tracing Living Relatives

    The Rootschat moderators reserve the right to delete or edit posts that we believe
    may contain information that could be misused to the detriment of the subject.

  • Do not publish copyrighted material on RootsChat.
    Just because you "found it on the Internet", or you have "bought the book/CD/DVD/...", etc, does not mean that you can re-publish it elswhere. Please examine closely any "Conditions", "Agreements" and/or "Terms of Use" before posting such material.
    For further guidance, click on the [Copyright] link at the bottom of every RootsChat page.

  • Do not ask for look-ups from commercial sources.
    Most commercial sources have strict 'Terms of Use', which forbid publishing their data elsewhere, so asking for such look-ups is also asking people to ignore the 'Terms of Use'.

  • Tip: FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) are handy documents to read before asking questions. On RootsChat, boards often have message stuck to the top, entitled *How to use this Board* or something along those lines. Consult them when available, they may save you some time and trouble.