All activity at DW is moderated by members of the Moderation Team. The Moderation Team is composed of Administrators (whose Usernames appears in Red) and Global Moderators (whose Usernames appear in Green) (Administrators and Global Moderators are also referred to simply as “Moderators”).
Aside from the actual back-end administration of this site, the primary role of Moderators is to monitor and moderate the posting activity on DW. In doing so, Moderators are guided by these Terms of Service, particularly, the Posting Rules.
Please take notice that Moderators are first and foremost Members of Dharma Wheel and as such are entitled to express their views and opinions in threads the same as all Members. Moderators expressing their personal views and opinions in threads should not be mistaken for acts of administration or moderation. Moderators will make it clear when they are performing an act of administration or moderation, usually by posting in Green font.
We try to maintain a Moderation Team of at least 6 Moderators at all times from a diversity of Buddhist traditions and located around the globe to ensure that we have a collective familiarity with all Mahayana and Vajrayana traditions invited to participate here and to ensure that at least one Moderator is on call at all times.
This is the ideal. Circumstances are usually less than ideal.
Administrator and Global Moderator candidates are nominated by the current Moderation Team as necessary, and join the Moderation Team upon their acceptance. Serving on the Moderation Team is voluntary and without compensation.
WHAT DO MODERATORS DO AND HOW DO THEY DO IT?
In general, Moderators participate in discussion on DW as Members. When problems are noticed by or brought to the attention of Moderators, Moderators step up into their roles as Moderators to address and resolve the problems.
Moderators do not have extensive formal protocols and procedures and in general carry out their responsibilities on an ad hoc basis. The exceptions are the procedures described below.
In a very real sense, maintaining DW is a collaborative effort requiring Member participation and reporting. Moderators often rely on Reports from Members for awareness of problems. (See REPORTING PROCEDURES below).
Technical problems are referred to and handled by Administrators.
Most problems, however, concern violations of the Terms of Service, particularly the Posting Rules (a “Violation”).
When a Moderator becomes aware of a Violation, the Moderator will review it along with its context in light of these Terms of Service, the Posting Rules, and any other standards that are reasonably applicable. Moderators may but are not required to seek feedback from the parties involved.
Most Violations are dealt with informally by whichever Moderator is available at the time. If the Violation was reported by a Member, the Moderator will send a private message acknowledging the report and responding as appropriate as soon as practicable.
If, in the judgment of the Moderator, there is no Violation, no further action will be taken.
If a Moderator determines that a Violation requires action, the Moderator may undertake immediate remedial steps, including:
Editing or removing a post;
Locking a thread; and
Suspending Members for up to 24 hours.
Violations may be recorded in Moderator logs at the discretion of the Moderator.
If a Moderator determines that a Violation requires further action or discussion with other Moderators, the Moderator may bring the issue to the attention of the Moderation Team. Depending on the nature of the issue and the availability of other Moderators, the Moderation Team may investigate and discuss the matter further.
Serious or repeated Violations by a Member may be the basis for a formal warning, a designation as NRU, a temporary suspension, or even a permanent ban depending on the severity of the Violations.
Suspensions longer than 24 hours, up to one week requires, at the minimum, notice to the Moderation Team. In practice, suspensions longer than 24 hours are imposed on the consensus of the available Moderation Team.
Formal warnings, NRU designations, suspensions longer than one week and permanent bans require the consensus of the available Moderation Team. In practice, such decisions are made only after extensive discussion among the Moderators and, depending on the particular circumstances, the consensus of the entire Moderation Team may be sought. Since Moderators are spread out across time zones, discussions can sometimes take several days to conclude.
More than two formal warnings in a six month period results in an automatic one month suspension, at a minimum.
Generally, moderation actions are only discussed with directly affected Members.
APPEALING A PERMANENT BAN
Banned Users may appeal a permanent ban six months after the ban is imposed by contacting an Administrator or Global Moderator and expressing interest in appealing the ban. Only one appeal will be considered on each ban in a calendar year. The banned User will be given an opportunity to argue for the lifting of the ban.
MODERATION MAY NOT BE DISCUSSED ON DW
Do not discuss moderation except as narrowly permitted in the Suggestion Box sub-forum and the Moderation Discussion sub-forum. In general, if you have questions or comments about moderation, please use the Private Message (“PM”) function to contact Moderators directly. If you do not feel comfortable addressing a particular Moderator, feel free to contact any of the other Moderators. Your Private Message will be handled with care and respect.
MODERATION DISCUSSION SUB-FORUM
A new Moderation Discussion sub-forum (“MDS”) has been introduced as of February 2019. The MDS is fully moderated and all posts will require Moderator approval. Access to MDS will only be open to Members in good standing. NRU Members shall not have access to the MDS. The primary function of the MDS is for the Moderation Team to have an outlet to explain moderation actions to the DW community and offer Members a means to constructively engage with the Moderation Team on moderation action and other subjects relevant to the DW community but which may be restricted in other sub-fora. The continuation of the MDS is subject to the discretion of the Moderation Team and may be discontinued at any time.
If you have a complaint about a post that's been made, use the Report Post function (exclamation mark in a square). A Moderator will attend to your report as quickly as practicable, given our available staff. Please do not publicly quote and object to the content of a post, because this then embeds it within the flow of conversation and it becomes difficult for moderators to extract the offending material without disrupting the thread. Public complaints, regardless of how legitimate, tend to take threads off-topic and have a tendency to become a sideshow unto themselves. If you're not satisfied with the way we deal with your complaint, proceed to the next step.
If you have a complaint about an act of moderation, attempt to resolve the issue with the Moderator in question first (if known, and if online) via PM, and if that is unsuccessful, please raise the issue with an adminstrator via PM. If your complaint is against an Administrator, tell the other Administrator. Complaints will be investigated by an Administrator using the Terms Of Service as a framework. The words and actions of all Members (including Moderators) will be assessed with respect to the Terms of Service and you will be notified of the outcome of your complaint via PM or e-mail. As with public complaints about posts, please do not publicly complain about moderation, as that is disruptive to the forum and is not the appropriate method for resolving such disputes.
If you're still unhappy about the outcome, after all that, you're still dissatisfied, contact site owner, David N. Snyder via PM. He owns this site and therefore he has the final word.
PLEASE READ BEFORE STARTING TO POST. It will be assumed the ToS have been read and understood from when a member makes their first post.
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