Forum Guidelines
Forum Guidelines
Welcome to the Washington Scholars Program (WSP) Forums!

This Forum is provided to all persons associated with the Washington Youth Summit on the Environment (WYSE) or the Washington Journalism & Media Conference (WJMC) as a way for them to discuss their experience and exchange ideas, tips, and information, or to ask questions related to the Program. Here you will find resources to help you get the most out of your experience with us.
To participate in the Forums, all you need to do is register.   
Please follow our guidelines and rules regarding conduct in the Forum.  WSP reserves the right to modify these guidelines and rules at anytime without notice by posting revised guidelines and rules on this website.   
What is an online forum and how do they work? 
Online forums are essentially a collection of virtual bulletin boards that are intended to provide a place for discussion, learning, and sharing experiences.  Users can post questions and answers to problems they have been encountering, search for troubleshooting advice, and even talk about their favorite subject with others that share the same interests. 
Because they are built using the questions, answers and feedback provided by their own users, online forums are unique knowledge bases that have the potential to reach hundreds and thousands people at any given time. 
While anyone can browse and search forums for information, only registered users (also called members) can post new questions, answers or comments.  Additionally, members can track discussions and even receive notifications whenever new posts are made. 
What is my role in the online community?   
Everyone is essential in an online community.  By visiting often (and participating) you not only add to the user-created knowledgebase, but also encourage others to do the same.  If you come with your toughest issues, you’ll probably be able to find someone else that has the same problem or can point you in the right direction.  Then if you’re able to find a solution that works for you, you can add your own insights and experience.  Chances are that you may have an answer that someone else has been seeking! 
Remember that online communities should be fun, friendly, informative and appropriate for everyone.  Most forums will have their own set of conduct guidelines so that you not only know what is expected of you, but of other members as well.  
How safe are online communities? 
Whenever participating in any online community, always remember that what you post is viewable by the general public.  Avoid providing any personal or private information that you would not be willing to share with a total stranger.  Information that you should never provide includes the following: 
•        Your Telephone Number
•        Your Physical/Mailing Address
•        Your Credit Card Account Number(s)
•        Your Social Security Number
•        Your G Number(s)
•        Tuition or Payment Information
•        Other Personal Information 
You can still post general information such as your hometown, color group, first and last name,. 
Remember that online communities can only be as safe and secure as the practices followed by their members - if you avoid placing your own personal information at risk, your privacy within an online community can almost be guaranteed. 
Online Community Do’s & Do Not’s
Use a descriptive title for your posts.Use vague subject titles like “HELP!”
Read other responses before posting.Repeat information already provided.
Ask for clarification when necessary. Make assumptions.
Contribute to the discussion. Excessively quote previous messages.
Focus on your areas of expertise. Offer advice on unfamiliar topics.
Be as concise as possible. Overwhelm readers with information.
Try to use correct spelling and grammar. Worry if your spelling isn’t perfect.
Stay on topic. Get off topic.
Remain positive. Disparage (insult) products or people.
Try to understand opposing viewpoints. Argue with other posters.
Make comparisons using relative terms. Refer to specific prices.
Act as you would in a retail store. Use foul language, off-color humor or slang.
Intentionally misrepresent yourself in the Forum.

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