Joined: 14 Sep 2006
|Posted: Sep 13, 2011 03:52 Post subject: A general guide for using the Forum with some rules and tips
A general guide for using the Forum with some rules and tips
Dear visitor, welcome to this forum, we hope that you like it and enjoy being a member. This Topic and the ones linked to it set out the general principles that, if you follow them, will help you use the forum and help other members work with you.
We have included some initial thoughts on navigating within the forum. If you are logged in, when you enter the FMF on the main Index page you will see a section of the page that looks like this.
If you would like to read the Spanish language Forum (which is run in a similar style to, but is completely separate from, the English language one) then click on the “Spanish message board” link.
If you want to know about the most recent individual postings you can see these in the ‘Last postings’ list on the right hand side of the page.
If you would like to see which are the latest Topics that have been started, or the latest topics that have had postings added to them click on the “Newest topics and users posts” link that is at the bottom of the ‘Last postings’ list. This will take you to a page that, after you scroll down a little bit, looks like this.
On the left you can see a list of the latest Topics that have been started within FMF, in the center you can see a list of the Topics that have most recently had items posted to them and on the right a list of the latest individual postings. We find this a really useful page for you to keep up to date with the latest activities on the Forum.
Back on the Forum’s Index page, below ‘Newest topics and users posts’ you can also chose to “View posts since last visit”, “View your posts”, or View unanswered posts”
General Rules for using the FMF
0-) When you first join you will get messages telling you about every new message on the forum. These will say:
To un-subscribe: If you no longer wish to be advised when a new message is posted on the forum please click the following link
So, by using that link (either use it now or when you want to stop) you will stop receiving more announcements of new messages. You always have the ability to be advised of all new messages again using the link: Send me an e-mail when a new message is posted that you will now see below the Search for a text icon. If you do click on that link you will be automatically reconnected for messages and you will see this message:
You have successfully subscribed to "message alerts". You can un-subscribe at any time by following the instructions given in every alert e-mail message you receive.
Please also read: Less e-mail messages from the forum
1-) If you want to add an email address you should put the following characters inside brackets: a ‘.’, ‘@’ and ‘-‘ to avoid the anti-spam filter. So they should be shown as (.), (@) and (-). For example: john(.)smith(@)gmail(.)com
2.-) If you want to add a link to a particular point within another Topic on the forum you can copy the link to the particular point of interest and include it in your text. To see how follow this link
The forum does allow you to type in direct links to web page on the following web sites: FMF, FMF Gallery, Mindat, WebMineral, Mineralienatlas.de, Strahlen.org, strahlenfoundation.com, RRUFF-IMA project, Mineralogical Record, Rock&Minerals, minersoc, MTI, Minercat (Grupo Mineralógico Catalán), Minval (Societat Valenciana de Mineralogía), Wikipedia, Minerales.info
For links to other web pages outside the forum you should use the same method when writing them as that used when adding email addresses.
For example: https://www.foro-minerales.com/forum/index.php, is a link within this forum so can be typed in directly, but had it been an external link you would have had to have added it as:
3-) If you want to include a telephone number then each number needs to be placed between brackets, i.e. (6)(0)(0)(1)(2)(3)(1)(2)(3) or written out as words, i.e. six zero zero one two three one two three.
4.-) If you want to include intervals of time the correct way of doing this is to give the start year, a space, a dash, a space then the end year, for example ‘1992 – 2001’.
If you do not follow these rules our anti-spam filter will reject your message and generate an error.
5.-) We do not allow any form of publicity on these pages, or links to any other web pages that are not related to the theme being discussed or the aims of the forum. This is not a commercial forum, so the sale of minerals is not allowed.
6.-) We ask that you take care when writing and avoid SMS type short hand. We advise you to use the FMF spell checker on your text before you publish it.
Also, you can always prepare text in a word processing package, such as Word, and then do a spell check on it. Then copy and paste it into the FMF.
Or you can use the spell check now built into Firefox (to turn this on look under Firefox>Options>Options>Advanced>’Check my spelling as I type’
If you are using Internet Explorer you can install a spell check add in such as ‘iespell’ to help you.
7.-) If you need help in identifying a mineral then please follow the recommendations given in the ‘Style Guide’ of the section ‘What is this?’ that you can read by following this link
If you want to work out the specific gravity of a specimen then this explanation: DIY Specific Gravity Kit, is very useful and can be read by following this link
Due to our experience regarding questions about "meteorites" and fossils this Forum, which is NOT a meteorite or a fossils Forum, always choses to answer these questions by simply closing the thread where the question was published, so as to avoid unnecessary controversies. Alternatively we suggest for the "meteorites" you visit this other forum Space Rock Club where these types of questions are answered.
8.-) You can include up to 15 photos or images within each message. To see how to add photos and how to include up to 15 photos/images in a single message follow this link
As you add each photo we ask that you include sufficient information. There are 3 simple fields that need to be completed in each photo and these are: Mineral, Locality, and Dimensions (if you know them). These fields, once there are filled in, will automatically appear as text in that order respectively in the Description box of the published message.
This does not stop you adding any other comments you might have, which you can do in the normal way in the 'Comments on the file' field, it is just that by filling in the three fields we will ALWAYS see the mineral name first, then the locality, then the size and thus will see the images correctly in order in the FMF Gallery.
9.-) Before starting a new Topic please perform a search to see if your question has already been answered by our experts.
10.-) When you start a new Topic please try to think of as good a description as possible of the contents. To see how to start a new Topic please follow this link
11.-) It is possible for people to edit their own messages. But there is on important limit on this capability - you can only edit them before some one else replies to them. See this page for more information.
12.-) With regards to copyright, when using information from other web pages or photos, please give the source, and if possible a link, following the rules on links discussed in note 2) above
13.-) If you see a link or a discussion that does not comply with the aims of the forum please let one of the moderators or the administrator know as soon as possible.
14.-) One last thing: being civil. Whether we agree with something or not, we should always show our good will and education. Discussing does not require us to insult or think that the other person is wrong. A discussion, in the positive sense, involves dialog through writing, questioning, commenting, responding, searching, and looking for answers. Corrections, new information, adding clarity should be done with respect (do remember that writing in CAPITALS is equivalent of shouting on the web) and of course good (healthy) humor is welcome, as long as it does not carry offensive undertones.
15.-) The information provided within this forum about localities is only given to allow reference to them. Any visit to any of the localities requires you to obtain full permission and relevant information prior to your visit. FMF is strictly against any illicit activities related to collecting minerals.
We ask that new members take the effort to present themselves to the other members with a short message. This is not required, but we find that it does help improve the way we all get along with each other on the forum.
Ownership of images and information on the Forum.
FMF looks after and protects the information provided by its users, images are the intellectual property of their authors. Use of this information or images on other web sites that are commercial in nature requires prior permission by the author of the material and/or the administrators of the FMF forum.
We recommend that you use the multiple tools provided on the forum.
There is a search tool you can use to see if a Topic already exists that can help you
You can send private messages "PM" to other members if you want to establish personal contact with them
You can use the “Reply quoting previous message” if you want to refer back to part of the debate.
So ask, share, learn, start new discussions, add your pearls of wisdom….
Respecting these thoughts makes this forum a useful tool for our hobby. Through the FMF you can find out about a locality, or tell others about one, find out about what it is like, share thoughts on how to clean specimens, get ideas on how to identify minerals, learn how to photograph them, and we can all publish our collections and do many more things. But above all we can enjoy mineralogy through sharing it with others.
This text was written by Carlos J. Rodríguez, who was helped by Juan De Laureano (Nitana2000), J. L. Bravo and Frederic Varela, and it has been checked by Jordi Fabre and Antonio Alcaide and translated by James Catmur. James did a fabulous job with the translation and all members of FMF are in debt to him for the translation of such a large and fairly complex set of text and related sub-texts.
Joined: 23 Aug 2009
|Posted: Sep 13, 2011 04:47 Post subject: Re: A general guide for using the Forum with some rules and tips
|Great job, James!!
I am sure this guide will be very useful for the new FMF members as the original text is for Spanish speakers.
Despite the names that appear at the end, nearly all the credit must be for James. He has added a clear explanation with pictures that improve the rules always a bit boring.
Life is the shortest crystal
Joined: 14 Sep 2006
|Posted: Mar 04, 2022 03:49 Post subject: Administrator intervention in members’ messages
| Administrator intervention in members’ messages
FMF allows two types of messages, private messages (PM) and public or published messages. In this document we are going to try to explain if, how, when and why administrators intervene in both cases.
Private Messages (PM) allow the exchange of private messages between registered users. The system is similar to that of email. The system is fully automatic, when a user sends a PM, it initially goes to the recipient's inbox and the sender's outbox. When the recipient reads the message it is moved to the sender's ‘sent’ folder, but not before it is read. The administrators do not intervene at any time, do not have access to private messages and do not control them in anyway.
Most forums, like FMF, are moderated after the fact. To do so, administrators / moderators review the messages and check that they do not contravene the forum rules.
If a new message or topic clearly or often violates these rules of use, it will be closed, or even deleted (as the case may require) by one of the administrators. If the abuse is repeated, FMF may block the user.
The administrators are not the authors of the messages, they are not responsible for the opinions expressed or the data provided and do not modify the content . The administrators can, on some occasions, contact the forum user to guide them on some aspect, but the decision to change, or not, the content is always that of the author of the message.
When the text follows the rules of use of the forum, the messages can still be edited to correct any misspelling or to normalize links, as explained in the main style guide.
The main tasks of the administrators on published messages are and have been:
Edit the forum users’ messages to::
- Modify some data in the text, at the request of the post’s author
- Correct misspellings in the title, in the text or in the fields about the photos.
- Change uppercase to lowercase (in the case that part or all the text is written in uppercase).
- Translate a text written in another language into English, leaving the original text in the message.
- Normalize links: The FMF forum has an anti-spam filter that prevents links or contact details from being posted. The forum administrators, if they find the link not spam, edit it so that it behaves like a normal link
- Normalize the "Location" field of the photographs: On FMF we have our own curated database with more than 10,000 registered localities. In the line which shows the name of the locality, right justified, two symbols may appear:
Indicates that everything is correct
In this case, the locality has been entered manually. If that locality is already in the database, an administrator normalizes it without problem. If it has not yet been registered, a process is started to incorporate it into the FMF location database. This process can take time because all the data is checked before registering a new locality and very few people work on that process.
This message (in Spanish) Mina "Mi Marujita" en Lorca y no en Puerto Lumbreras shows the rigor with which those in charge of the process work.
- Normalize the "Mineral Name" field of the photographs, ensuring that it is always the IMA name of that mineral.
In this sense, we have established some simple basic rules: The names of minerals recognized by the IMA are written with the first letter in capital font, rocks in lowercase, the mineral species not recognized but of which there are recognized series, will be placed between single quotes. (for example it would be 'Columbite' when we do not know if it is Columbite-(Fe), Columbite-(Mg) or Columbite-(Mn)).
- Special care is taken with the photographs that will be uploaded to the For this reason, we verify that all the data entered in the fields related to the photographs (mineral, locality, and dimensions) are correct and any mineralogical errors are corrected (although that is not always possible). In these cases, possible changes are agreed upon by all administrators and, if necessary, the opinion of third-party experts in the field is requested. The change that we consider to be required is communicated by PM to the user.
- Delete Deleting a post or part of a topic is always the last option, but sometimes it's unavoidable. Possible candidates to be deleted:
- Blank messages
- Duplicate messages (the second message will be deleted)
- Commercial or inappropriate messages (aggressive, insulting messages, …)
- In some messages links to commercial pages and other commercail matters are deleted
- If a message is deleted, a copy of the message and all the data that can identify the user are saved.
- For the forum to be kept tidy, messages can be moved to other sections if that is considered more appropriate. Whenever possible, the change is communicated to the forum user. For example, a post that asks for identification and is published (for example) in Mineralogy will be changed to the section What is it? - Where it is from?
- This image, that appears in the title of some themes, in the forum index, indicates that the photographs in those themes are uploaded to the FMF Gallery. All messages, with photographs, published in these topics must follow the Rules for the "Collection Images" section. If most, or all, of the photos in the post do not meet the requirements, the post is moved to another section.
- The highest quality topics are moved to the “noble” sections of the forum.
The decision about changing or not a topic to those sections is a decision of the administrators, who must agree if the topic has enough quality to be in those sections. The forum users can propose topics, for this they must write a PM to one of the administrators.
- Sometimes, in a topic, some messages can be separated to create a new topic and, in this way, give them more visibility. When this happens, the administrator writes a post indicating that they have been separated and indicates, with a link, the original thread. They also choose a new title for the created topic.
- All messages that lead to discussions on topics that are not appropriate in a mineral forum and/or that may alter the good nature of the forum.
- But not everything is negative, topics can be closed that have already fulfilled their purpose.
We cannot finish this guide without thanking the work carried out by all the previous administrators who, with their great work, have shown us the path to follow and have contributed to making the forum what it is and, also, to all the forum users for their contributions, without them none of this would be possible.
Please send us any questions, complaints, suggestions, or criticism by a PM to any of the administrators.
This text was written by Maria Torrecillas for the Spanish FMF (and translated by James Catmur), with the help of: Carles (Carles Manresa), Antonio P. López, Inma Ramos, Frederic Varela, yowanni (Jonathan Carral), James Catmur, Carlos Rey, Firmo Espinar, Maria Torre (María Torrecillas), Supertxango (Juan Hernández Orea) and the most recent additions José Ángel Carrero and Juan Luís Castanedo, and our general coordinator: Jordi Fabre.