Reasons we ban
Preface: please do not be worried about getting banned. Unless you do something very dramatically out of line (which is hard to do accidentally), you will never be banned without being warned at least once. Remember that we don't want to ban you, and especially if you've been around for some time, we will try to find a compromise.
With that, though: here's a list of 'very dramatic' offences that would actually get you banned immediately.
- All new accounts posting spam are permabanned. This includes spam ads and people who are clearly trying to troll or aggravate people off a new account.
- If we find out somebody is using multiple accounts (or otherwise breaking our rules about connected accounts), then we will ban the new accounts. We are particularly intolerant of people using second accounts to get more votes and will consider banning people completely for this.
- Posting shocking or sexually explicit content will get you banned (in particular, if there are pictures involved).
- Any violation of personal privacy may lead to a permaban, depending on the severity.
Listed below are general indiscretions that will lead to a ban if they happen often, especially after we warn a person about them.
- Don't bring a poor attitude. Be nice to people and keep a level head. Antisocial behaviour like making petty arguments, insulting others, POSTING LIKE THIS!!, etc. can get you in trouble. If you're the sort of person who always has something to say about other people's business or their posts, then be very careful with this one. In practice, this is the most common reason active community members have been banned.
- Following on from the above, do not post harmful, hateful or violent content. Do not threaten others. Do not encourage violence. Err on the side of not using swear words. No bigotry, including off-handed or ""joking"" use of slurs. Edgy/toxic humour is not welcome here.
- No voting and flagging abuse, like voting friends repeatedly i.e. 'buddy voting', or spiting people with downvotes or flags. Keep the points system fair.
- Do not abuse username changes. Avoid offensive names and do not impersonate people.
- Don't troll. We like a joke as much as anybody, but we're also trying to keep this place functional. If you aren't looking to make positive contributions to PokeBase, then go away.
- If you're told to stop acting in a certain way, then please follow the instruction (or talk it out with us first). Often, half the issue with people who end up banned is they ignore staff/other people. This shows a lack of care that nobody likes.
These last few are minor considerations that probably won't constitute a ban on their own, but will not help your case.
- Please don't post uninformative "spam" comments, especially on old/resolved posts. Examples include "Wow cool!" and "Hey, I did that in my game!" This clogs navigation and makes the website less presentable.
- Don't post low quality content -- this means one-line answers with no backing, answers that are guesses, silly and poorly explained questions, etc.
- General immaturity. We don't (currently) have a 13+ rule; but if you aren't 13+, please try to present as though you are.
- A lack of regard for the rules. If you're posting trade requests in the main section or asking for someone to rate your Pokemon Dark Prima Platinum team, it's clear you haven't made much of an effort.
- Any new user who fronts up to the site and shows bad signs will be banned more quickly than an established member who has suddenly gone rogue, so to speak.
- We can block and unblock accounts at any time, so we can give "temporary" bans if we see fit. The process is fully manual.
- If you disable your wall, you're also disabling our easiest means of contacting you should you ever end up in strife with us. If you have Discord, we may try that if you're seriously pushing the boundary.
What happens to banned users (incl. ban appeals)
Banned users can see PokeBase threads and access user pages, etc. However, they cannot make any kind of interaction with the platform itself. This includes non-posting actions such as voting, editing, flagging, etc.
If we ban somebody with the intention of unbanning them at specific date, we will leave a wall post indicating what date that is, unless the circumstances were made clear in some other way. If there is an active user who is permanently (or, as that is perhaps more accurately described, 'indefinitely') then we will make a wall post about that too. Long-term bans are only for people who we can't see being productive and healthy users of PokeBase any time in the near future.
If you're currently banned without a timeline for an unban, then know that the usual communication channels with the staff team -- primarily Discord -- are still open to you. You are welcome to negotiate being unbanned, but be aware that reverting an "indefinite" ban is not a decision we take lightly, especially if you were banned recently. If you believe you've changed since we banned you (and you should do what you can to show that), then we will hear you out.
Please note, we don't go out of our way to talk to banned users. If you want to be unbanned, it is your responsibility to start the conversation about that. If you evade your ban, then expect the new account to be banned unless you have already talked to us.
We can't control and don't really care if PokeBase users continue to talk with banned users outside the platform. However, on the platform itself, please respect that if somebody is banned, we've chosen for their name to be distanced from the community. Conversation about their situation should take place in private.