Polygon Community Guidelines
WELCOME TO POLYGON!
Here on Polygon, you'll find a vibrant community of gamers, enthusiasts and smart, knowledgeable people. As always, our goal is to foster conversations that are insightful, helpful, and most of all, fun. In order to do this we need your help, so here are some guidelines to get your started!
THE SHORT VERSION
- Don't be rude, don't call people names, or respond to trolls. We'll remove any bad stuff when we see it, which will unfortunately include any nicer comments made in response.
- Respect and help the moderators not by replying to bad comments, but by flagging bad comments. It's a small team of dedicated, caring
robotshumans working hard to make things better.
- Got a correction or suggestion for an article? Use the contact page to let us know. It's quicker and we'll heart you for that rather than derailing a thread.
OUR WAY OR THE (INTERNET SUPER) HIGHWAY
Here's a list of things that will get your comment or forum post removed, and might get your account banned. Remember that this is not a comprehensive list and our moderators reserve the right to remove anything we deem inappropriate and that skirts the boundaries of good taste. See any of the stuff below? You can help us out by flagging (more on that below).
- Spam: Zero tolerance, of course! If it comes from a human or a robot, spam will be deleted. This includes self-promotion. Generally speaking, promoting your games, projects, YouTube channel, website or copy pasting entire articles/scans from other sites/magazines will be treated like any other spam on Polygon. It goes in the bin.
- Personal attacks: Don't attack or insult another user. It's not helpful and it doesn't make Polygon a friendly place. This includes calling other members trolls, fanboys, sheep, white knights, etc. If you're thinking of using a specific term such as a racial or derogatory insult, think again about why that's a bad idea, and don't do it.
- Illegal activities: If you post links to illegal downloads, ways to steal service, describe how to perform unauthorized hacks and exploits, or any other nefarious activity, then it's game over for you, kid.
- NSFW material: Nope, not allowed. Even images or links that could be considered borderline are not acceptable. A good rule of thumb is that anything beyond PG-13 will get you in trouble, but we reserve the right to remove any post we deem offensive. This goes for pornographic material, vile language, gore and generally gross stuff.
- Racism, sexism, and other discrimination: Attacking entire classes of people is just like attacking a single person: we'll be having words with you about it.
- Trolling: If you're making off-topic comments, taking threads off-topic, or posting flamebait, you're likely to find that your post has suddenly disappeared. An example of that would be spelling company names using dollar signs such as $ony/M$, or wordplay like "Crapple." It could also be going off topic on what constitutes a good review score, or bringing up other review scores in an unrelated review to make an off-topic point.
- Offensive usernames: If your username contains language or terms that could be construed as offensive, we'll put a hold on your account and start a dialogue with you to change your username to something more appropriate. If you provide unsuitable replacements, we reserve the right to choose a new username at random in order to get you up and running on a temporary basis until you provide a more permanent option.
- Multiple accounts and throwaway emails: We don't allow multiple accounts per user. Using a disposable email address signals to us that you're not here for the right reasons and we'll go ahead and block those, and offer to open a dialogue with you when you get in touch using a legitimate email account. You also may not create accounts designed to impersonate another person.
- Cross posting: Don't make duplicate posts across different forums — it clogs things up and fractures the conversation
- Complaining about coverage: We cover a wide array of topics, not all of which are easy, comfortable, or reflective of your personal views and may touch on issues normally considered 'outside' of gaming such as feminism, sexual assault or religious beliefs. While we're not against discussions of our coverage, comments containing plainly stated accusations of bias, complaints about the frequency of articles on a topic, and complaints about whether something is newsworthy are usually an indication that you're not trying to be a productive member of the community. We'll have words and remove posts to get conversation back on track. This also applies to review scores.
- Complaining about moderation: See "Moderation" below.
- Site bashing: Whether it's Polygon, or another website - don't bash them or their staff. It's not cool and it's disrespectful to a lot of people. Be the better person here, please.
- Posting unmarked spoilers: We have a spoiler tag in the text editor for when you make your comment. Use it! Posting unmarked spoilers will usually get your comment removed. Generally speaking, anything older than 12 months of its U.S. release is considered fair game.
- Abuse of the flag system: If we catch you flagging comments that have no business being flagged because you disagree on semantics, we will have words with you.
- "First post" rule: All of the behavior listed above? You could say we're not fond of it. We're even less likely to tolerate it if you made an account on Polygon specifically to engage in it, since it tells us that you aren't here to contribute in any meaningful manner. If your first post breaks the rules above, we'll usually go ahead and issue a ban and open a dialogue.
HOW TO POST AND COMMENT
There are three ways to interact on Polygon. Here are the basics, but there's much more information listed below.
- Post a comment: We love comments, and simply by registering you can comment on any story here on Polygon. The comments are threaded, so you're able to easily reply to the person you're talking to. There are also some really great keyboard shortcuts on comments — all of which are listed just above the comments area — so you can find quick, easy ways to get to the newest comments. Oh, and you'll have 90 seconds to edit your comment should you make an oops.
- Check our Forums: You're going to love forums on Polygon. Not only are there general discussion forums, but every game we cover has a forum of its own. Talk about the games you love, get questions answered or even just talk with other folks in the community about anything you like in the Off-Topic area. You can also leave questions and feedback for our editorial and support teams in the Meta forum. If you are not sure where something goes, email the moderation team.
- Get in touch: Have a news tip? Want to contact the moderators? Want to tell us about a site bug or article item that needs correction? You can do all of that right here.
- About our moderators: They don't speak for the site, but they are here to help you guys make the Polygon community a better place. They're denoted by a badge and a title so they're easy to spot in our communities.
- Questions about moderation: We're happy to have a discussion with you about it — in private. We've learned from experience that public complaints about moderation just leads to people trying to "game" the system. If you have a question about moderation, hit us up on our contact form and we'll have a talk. If there's a big policy change or something we would like to say publicly about moderation, we'll post it in our Meta forums and update this document. Do note that any complaints about moderation or comment removal will also be removed from the comment section in order to keep things on-topic.
- Isn't this censorship? Well, no and yes. We're trying to foster great conversation and we will remove comments that harm that endeavor. Even though your comment may seem benign, we've played this game long enough to spot the sort of posts that spiral the conversation out of control. You're free to say whatever you like with no boundaries at other places, but not here. At Polygon we maintain a different standard, working very hard to keep the conversation informative and fun. The bottom line is that moderators have the final say on whether it falls within our community guidelines.
Comments are a lovely way to talk about the stories, forum posts, and reviews you find on Polygon. They can also be a lot to keep up with, so we have some tools to make it all easier. You can preview your comment before you post it, and you will have 90 seconds to edit it afterwards. Every comment has a few links associated with it:
- Reply: Use this to reply to that specific comment. Your reply will be threaded to that comment.
- Recommend: We love great comments, and we know you do too. Click the "Recommend" link to vote up a comment and see it get more love and affection from the site.
- Flag: This is the link you use to report a post to the moderators. Use it to report spam, personal attacks, or racist and sexist language. Do not use it to report comments you disagree with or to hassle users. If the top comment in a thread is a problem, we may remove it, and that will remove all the replies to it. So if there's an inappropriate comment and you reply to it with something eloquent and heartfelt, there's a very good chance that your highly intelligent and meaningful comment will nonetheless be lost, and you'll have only yourself to blame for that.
Polygon offers you a full WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor for creating forum posts.
Our editors and moderators will be watching out for great content to promote on the site, as well as inappropriate content. In other words, all the rules above about spam, abusive behavior, and basic human decency apply doubly to forum posts. You can help! Recommend or Flag forum posts to bring them to our attention. Finally, please post in the appropriate forum for what you want to discuss. Have a question about Nintendo's 3DS? We've got a Nintendo 3DS forum. Want to talk about Polygon itself, we have a Meta forum. Want to discuss the differences between a first-person shooter and a third-person shooter? We have a general Gaming forum called Polynauts for that. Note sure where your post belongs? Ask us directly.
COMMENTS VS. FORUM POSTS
Although there is no hard and fast rule for when you should make a comment on somebody else's post or when you should make a new forum post, we do have some clear guidelines. Essentially, if there is already a post on a topic you're interested in talking about, it's better to comment on that post rather than to make a new one. We have a very large search box at the top of every page and we encourage all users to search before posting. Duplicate posts may be closed or removed.