The original rules of YCM were commissioned and written way back in 2007 with some additions in early 2008, and since then the site has obviously changed dramatically. It's about time a new set of rules was drafted and written to replace the outdated rules, and that they be simplified and easy to understand. The amount of rules has been dropped from 24 into 7, making them much easier to read. As a result of this update, the original rules are null and void from this point on, and may no longer be referenced.
If you have any questions about these new rules, feel free to contact myself or any other member of staff. Special thanks go to Tkill93 and Azuh, who helped with the original rules, JoshIcy and Browarod, who were instrumental in the creation of these new rules, and Crab Helmet, who gave some useful feedback post-drafting. If you'd like to use these rules for purposes outside of YCM, please contact me and ask for permission beforehand.
Cheers, Reece (a.k.a. Frunk).
Rule 1: Staff have final say
Moderators of YCM have been appointed to their positions because they have the confidence of the administration. This means, essentially, whatever they say goes, whether it be locking a thread or banning a member. If you are not a moderator yourself, you do not have a say on what the site moderation does - that is called "backseat moderation". If you want to help the moderation team, the best thing you can do is use the Report system, which is done by clicking the "Report" button that appears beneath every post.
You must follow moderators instructions at all times. It's their job to keep the forum running smoothly and if they ask you to do something it is indeed for the good of the forum.
Moderators do, however, have to abide by these rules, so if you feel a moderator has made an incorrect or unfair decision, bring it up with them in a calm manner. Attacking a moderator will likely get you into even more trouble. If that does not work, feel free to contact an administrator.
These rules are purposefully vague as there is no way that every breach of them can possibly be anticipated. Stating something was not precisely covered in the rules will be ignored. Staff do indeed have the final say.
Rule 2: No inappropriate content
YCM is a family-friendly forum home to users of all ages. Members may not post, or link to, anything that a reasonable person would consider far beyond the bounds of PG-13, including, but not limited to, coarse language, any form of pornography, and derogatory or discriminatory material or content. What is inappropriate will be determined by moderators on a case-by-case basis. If you are unsure, feel free to PM a member of staff and ask for clarification before you make your post.
Rule 3: No illegal content
Simply, it is prohibited for users to post any content that breaks any laws or infringes copyright. This includes, but is not limited to, information and resources relating to hacking, promotion of terrorism (including cyber-terrorism), and so on. If you are unsure, feel free to PM a member of staff and ask for clarification before you make your post.
Also, it is strictly prohibited to breach privacy of anyone, whether they be a member of YCM or not. You may not post any real-world information, like full names, addresses, etc., and, notably including, logs of IM conversations, private messages (if a PM breaks a rule, PM a moderator directly - do not quote it on the forum), emails or other such information without express permission of all parties involved.
Rule 4: No plagiarism
"Plagiarism", as defined in the 1995 Random House Compact Unabridged Dictionary, is the "use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one's own original work." On YCM, it is strictly prohibited to post anything that is not your own, original work, and claim it as your own.
Rule 5: No spamming
"Spam" has many definitions and comes in many forms. On YCM, it is prohibited to consistently make short posts, posting twice in a row of the same thread within a 24-hour period, post a thread in the wrong location (i.e. You cannot post your created Yu-Gi-Oh! cards outside the Custom Cards section, etc.), intentionally go off-topic in a thread, flood any part of the board with threads and/or replies, "stalk" another member's threads and/or replies, make threads and/or replies identical or almost identical in nature to ones that already exist, and etc. If you are unsure, feel free to PM a member of staff and ask for clarification before you make your post.
Advertising also falls within the bounds of spam. On YCM, while some things are acceptable, it is prohibited to advertise real-life products or similar, non-internet related goods, services, or information anywhere on YCM, whether it being in a thread, reply or profile field. Additionally, it is prohibited to post threads or replies advertising non-YCM websites, like blogs, forums and online-shopping sites. However, it is acceptable to place links to user-owned blogs, forums and other websites that do not advertise any of the aforementioned real-world goods, and additionally don't infringe the rules of YCM, in profile fields only.
Rule 6: No trolling
Like Spam, "trolling" has many defintions and comes in many forms. Posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages with the primary intent of provoking other users into a desired emotional response and disrupting normal, civil, on-topic discussion is just one definition of trolling on YCM. Essentially, if you are told by a moderator that you are trolling, you must cease that behaviour.
YCM is a place where nobody should feel harassed. Harrassing another member of YCM in any way, on or off the forum, will never be tolerated, no matter what you think that person did to "deserve" such treatment.
Rule 7: No account or feature abuse
Membership to YCM is a privledge, not a right. It is obviously prohibited for any member to abuse any part of their account or other feature of the site, namely profile information fields, avatars, signatures, the calendar, the Private Message system, the Report system, the Reputation system, the Points system, the Yu-Gi-Oh! Card Maker, and/or of course access to the board itself, and/or utilise these privledges in order to break any rules.
Members of YCM are not allowed more than one account. There is no reason for you to have more, and any "double accounts", and potentially your "main account", will be banned.
In conclusion, the sole intent and purpose of these rules is so that every member of YCM can enjoy this great site to the fullest. If you read through them and intend on obeying them to as close to the letter as possible, you have mine and the rest of the YCM staff's personal thanks.