Thought I'd share a draft version of the new user code of conduct we're going to be rolling out soon. Feel free to post your comments or contact us directly with feedback (just message us) .
This is part of our ongoing effort to make the site a great destination for BOTH social AND professional networking for fire and rescue.
FirefighterNation.com User Code
First, the legal mumbo jumbo…
FirefighterNation.com is intended for use by current and former fire, rescue and EMS professionals. Non-emergency service personnel may be subject to review and removal.
Using this site to spam/advertise or solicit members in any way will result in account termination. Commercial companies are welcome to have profiles on the site but please do NOT send unsolicited messages or friend requests to our members. Additionally, any forum posts, blogs or other content uploads that are intended to solicit business, promote offerings, etc. are not permitted.
Posts, blogs and content on your profiles—including photos and video—that contain excessive profanity, nudity, or other types of offensive content, suspicious/spam/phishing links, attempts to get personal information from other users that is not welcome, etc. will be removed. The Webmaster reserves the right to remove such content and users without advance notice.
This is an all-ages site. Keep that in mind when posting content.
Members are encouraged to report issues that affect the reputation and professionalism of the site, as well as any inappropriate or offensive content, by using the Report an Issue link at the bottom of every page.
Any material that is protected by copyright laws including news stories, photos or other materials will be removed if reported/found.
Next, some suggested guidelines for posting content…
Create an accurate, complete profile. Fictional profiles don’t help us grow the community. Feel free to limit your contact information, but organizational affiliations, experience, etc. should be accurate. Also worth nothing, ising your real name helps other users find you more easily.
No personal attacks. Dialog and debate are encouraged, but if you wouldn’t say it to their face, don’t say it in writing. Treat others as you would want to be treated.
Learn. There’s a ton of posts that discuss tactics, training drills, and loads of other information. Contact those posters to learn how you can learn more. Put it in writing for all to read/share. When you write it, we all learn.
Remember that anyone can join the Nation, so members of your organization, even your chief, could be reading what you say.
Share. You’ll feel more of the community if you post too. Share your thoughts, a great fire photo, video of a training drill. Also, invite your fire service colleagues and friends to become members as well. The bigger we get, the more features we can add to the site!
Link, don’t copy. In general, copying a couple paragraphs of a copyrighted story is OK, but anything more than that constitutes infringement. So just link to it instead; it makes your posts shorter and easier to read!
Don’t take offense. This is a community and it’s meant to generate discussion. If someone posts a comment disagreeing with something you’ve posted, look at it as an opportunity to broaden your perspective. Don’t take it personally. Questions that generate debate cause each of us to dig deep and think about the way we do things. Critical thinking is exactly what this community is about.
Think about firefighter safety. Fire service pranks and mishaps can be amusing, but it’s irresponsible to post such content in such a way as to promote unsafe actions by other firefighters. The copycat syndrome is alive and well; let’s not give those with poor judgment even more material to choose from. Think before your post: Is it legal, is it safe and would my department want this posted on the front page?
Respect the fallen. Reserve judgment until the true facts are out in order to respect those who have paid the ultimate price. Comments regarding LODDs and injuries should be respectful and constructive.
Thanks again for helping Firefighter Nation become the great community it has become! We have nearly 35,000 members and many, many more visiting each month.
Be a part of our growth by using the Invite Tool to encourage your co-workers and friends in the fire/rescue service to join the Nation.
I agree. Its nice to see that you guys are putting your foot down. But I do want to say that I am very sorry for my past posts and that I am sorry if I made anyone agree with me. I hope that with these guidelines it will make this Awsome website more enjoyable...
These are my opinions and not the opinions of the website. They are my personal observations from many years of website participation.
Guidelines become necessary when common sense is missing and a lack of discretion is present.
Because we are not cookie cutter in our thoughts, people don’t realize that how they word a response is offensive to the recipient. People get into such a hurry to post their thoughts that they don’t read the thread, which normally sets the tone for replies or their only intent is to stir things up. At that point, you are NOT participating in a discussion; you are merely shouting your opinion and nothing more. It adds nothing to the discussion.
Guidelines, on the other hand, can be restrictive and punitive if care isn’t used when applying them. Users need to realize that there is a line. It doesn’t matter if you cross that line a little or a lot. Once it’s crossed, an action is usually taken. So, keep that in mind when you complain that your indiscretion was smaller than so and so’s. The fact is that you crossed THAT line. Period. However; I believe that there should be latitude for the site to warn a user for minor first offenses. Terms of service can be a little tricky if there is the slightest bit of “wiggle room”.
I am glad that an effort is made to verify profile information. Otherwise, phonies, phakes and phrauds would populate this site until they were found out and they usually reveal themselves at some point. The danger with these types is that they will put out information that could be harmful and dangerous. A certain vigilance by us all has to be present to keep this site useful and productive.
My last point is a suggestion: have a “journal” feature. Many of the discussion threads and blogs are about someone’s trials and tribulations or health problems. I am not crazy about seeing a story about someone’s spastic colon right above a great tactics article by Chris Naum. I sympathize with those who lose their girlfriend/boyfriend, lost their job, got sick or screwed over by a co-worker, but if you want us to be a part of your intimate lives, then send out a message to your “friends” or as I suggest, enter it into your journal and provide a link to your friends, so that if they are concerned, they can tell you and the rest of us can continue on our merry way. It’s not that I don’t care about someone’s personal problems, but there is a proper place for such discussions and I don’t think that it should be a PUBLIC place such as a website.
As was said, you never know who is looking and watching and that fact alone should cause many to think twice about what they say so publicly. But that goes right back to that common sense thing.