It’s been a while since we’ve had a guideline update, which obviously means it’s time for some!
Please note we’re putting this first one up in response to a trend we’ve noticed, not in response to any one person.
This isn’t a new guideline, but an expansion to guideline #8 about considerate insults, where we request that you be considerate of others who may be catching flak when insulting public figures. In this case, we’re asking you to remember that some of your fellow Avocados are people who hold various religious beliefs. On the other hand, many Avocados are people/members of groups who have faced abuse and discrimination from organized religion. We want The Avocado to be a place that is sensitive to both those facts.
To that end, we ask two things:
1. That when discussing religion, members feel free to criticize institutions or the actions of specific religious people, but refrain from general insults about anyone who holds a religious belief. This is the difference between “this church has done a lot of harm to people and continues to support harmful things” and “religious people are idiots, how can they possibly believe _____?” The former is fine, the latter violates our guidelines and, more importantly, hurts people.
2. That people remember this difference between anger at an institution and anger at every member of a group. Allow people to express their anger at groups that have done harm, but please let us know when that crosses over into generalized insults about religious belief.
The actual guideline update will be the addition of the sentence “please keep in mind that the religious beliefs, or lack thereof, of others are included in this guideline”.
And we’ve got one more, smaller update:
# 14. This is more of a notice than a guideline. Beginning now, the mods will no longer feature Go Fund Me or other fundraising efforts by members. This is for several reasons: to avoid appearances of favoritism, to avoid liability issues should a fundraising effort go badly in some way, and to keep members from feeling pressured. Avocado members are still welcome to link to their fundraising efforts and to repost links so that their fundraisers are seen, but moderators will not feature those links. Please understand that we are not trying to discourage members from these fundraisers or discourage anyone from contributing: we’re glad this is a place where people feel they can ask for help and be supported.
If you have any questions about these new rules, please ask them in the below Questions subthread!