Scotch exists for people to share their opinions, thoughts, and ideas. People will inevitably write things other people don’t agree with. Sometimes this will enlighten. Other times it will frustrate.
Scotch is a shared space. We want lots of different ideas to thrive here. So, we need a few ground rules. Not many. In fact, they can pretty much be summed up as: Don’t pee in the pool (metaphorically). In other words…
Things You Shouldn’t Do
Threats of Violence
Don’t threaten violence against anyone. We will do our best to look at what you write in proper context. But saying “just kidding” later does not make it a joke.
We think free expression deserves a lot of leeway. So, we generally think the best response to hateful speech is more speech, not censorship. Still, we reserve the right to take down hateful slurs, which tend to silence others while adding little if anything.
We don’t tolerate harassment on Scotch. This includes:
- Posts that shame specific individuals, including images or altered images
- Posts with altered or unaltered copies of private communications between private individuals posted without the explicit consent of a party to the communication
- Posts with non-public, personal information intended to target, blackmail, or harass people
- Repeated personally insulting notes, responses, story requests, or writer requests
- Intimate or explicit images taken or posted without the subject’s explicit consent (including revenge porn)
Scotch supports parody, commentary, and fair use. Users may speak freely about matters and people of public interest. We support vigorous debate of substantive issues. However, we won’t tolerate abusive behavior directed at private individuals. In deciding whether someone has violated the rules, we will take into account things like the context and nature of the posted information and applicable privacy laws.
Harm to Minors
Don’t post anything relating to minors that is sexual or violent. Don’t bully or harass minors.
Don’t spam. Don’t use deceptive tags or links or otherwise mislead others about what you’ve posted. Don’t embed malicious code in your posts. Don’t use deception to generate revenue or traffic. Don’t write posts aimed primarily at affiliate marketing.
Mass Registration and Automation
Don’t register accounts or post content automatically, systematically, or programmatically.
Copyright and Trademark Infringement
Respect the copyrights and trademarks of others. Unless you’re authorized to use someone else’s copyrighted or trademarked work (either expressly or by legal exceptions and limitations like fair use), don’t do it. It’s our policy to respond to notices of alleged copyright infringement under our Terms of Service and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
Don’t impersonate someone else to deceive people. Parody and ridicule are fine, but make clear that that’s what you’re doing.
No porn. There are other places to post it. You know where they are.
Don’t post content that violates others’ privacy, including personally identifying or confidential information like credit card numbers, social security numbers, or non-public contact information.
Phishing and Other Frauds
Don’t use Scotch to engage in phishing or fraud.
Promotion and Glorification of Self-Harm
Don’t promote or glorify self-harm, such as cutting, eating disorders like anorexia or bulimia, and suicide.
If You Break the Rules
If it looks like you’ve violated these policies, we may send you an email and ask you to explain what you’re up to and why. Because, hey, we know context is important, and we want to understand the big picture. If you don’t adequately explain yourself or fix the problem, we may suspend or block your account or remove your content. We care a lot about fairness and do our best to act that way. But we reserve the right to suspend accounts or remove content, without notice, for any reason, particularly to protect our services, infrastructure, users, or community. We reserve the right to enforce, or not enforce, these policies at our sole discretion. These policies don’t create a duty or contractual obligation for us to act in any particular manner.
We also reserve the right to change these rules using the procedures in our Terms of Service.
If you have questions or feedback, let us know. Like everything on Scotch, it is open to discussion.