PureZC Community Rules and Guidelines
(Last updated on February 13th, 2023)
Welcome to PureZC, a Zelda Classic fan site that is dedicated to hosting Zelda Classic resources and quests, to providing the means for quest creators to get feedback and help with their creations, and to allowing quest players to easily find and receive assistance. PureZC strives to maintain a friendly, relaxing, and welcoming atmosphere where people can come together to interact and to discuss various topics including, but not limited to, Zelda Classic.
However, maintaining the peace of the community relies on all PureZC members working together to keep discussions and interactions friendly and appropriate at all times. To that end, this topic serves to communicate the rules and guidelines that we, the staff team, expect all members of PureZC to abide by. These rules and guidelines are written to be both straightforward and flexible, allowing them to cover a wide variety of infractions while accommodating members in being able to easily understand and follow them by exercising common sense. In addition to these important rules and guidelines, this topic also contains information on staff member expectations, staff actions on member infractions, ban appeals, and reporting posts and other content.
It is your responsibility as a member of this community to read and understand the entirety of the contents of this topic. Your participation in any PureZC venue, including the site and forums, indicates your agreement to and understanding of the rules and guidelines of this community. The staff team reserves the right to make any revisions to this topic without prior notice. Therefore, it is imperative that your remain informed with any revisions, and your continued participation in the community indicates your acceptance of such revisions (of course, we will make public announcements for any important major changes that need to be communicated with the entire member base). If there is any confusion or misunderstanding of any of the contents of this topic, please do not hesitate to reach out to the staff team using the Staff Dropbox and we will be happy to assist you.
Rules and Guidelines
This section lays out the main rules and guidelines of the PureZC community that all members are expected to comply with. Please note that these rules and guidelines apply equally to all PureZC associated venues, including but not limited to the forums, database site, PMs (private messages), and chats. Some areas of the community may have additional rules specific to that area, which will be visible as a pinned topic or some other visible format.
1. Respect Others
All members of the community are expected to treat each other with the utmost respect and dignity, and maintain proper decorum and courtesy at all times. In the interest of keeping our public spaces and venues comfortable for everyone, disrespectful and toxic attitudes towards other members or staff members will not be tolerated. This includes inappropriate conduct such as flaming, trolling, bigotry, or threatening behavior that harms, demeans, harasses, discriminates, or otherwise negatively impacts a member, a group of members, or the entire community.
We have an absolutely zero tolerance policy for bigotry of any kind. Attacks against people based on race, ethnicity, sex, country of origin, religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity will not be tolerated. This applies to overt and veiled attacks equally. Hiding bigotry behind humor will not be tolerated any more than outright attacks would, and we do not entertain any rules lawyering on this point.
Additionally, any topics and posts in any PureZC venue that lead to very heated debates between two or more members of differing opinions regarding politics, religion (or lack thereof), or other controversial topics will be carefully examined with appropriate staff action taken as necessary. To be clear, simply discussing politics, religion, or other controversial topics is likely acceptable so long as it does not involve the aforementioned inappropriate conduct. The goal of the staff team is not to stifle discussion, but instead to minimize conflict and establish a peaceful and comfortable atmosphere for all members of the community.
As a member of PureZC, you are solely accountable for your own personal interactions and relationships with other users, whether online or offline. The staff reserves the right, but has no obligation, to monitor or become involved in personal member dispute between you and other users. Our goal is to keep these personal disputes out of any PureZC venue and enforce consequences for any violations of the community rules and guidelines.
2. Avoid Bad Posting Habits
Your posts on the forums and written contributions on other PureZC venues should be both comprehensible and relevant, and should adequately contribute to the topic and/or site. Avoid bad posting habits such as posting substanceless messages, SPAM (repeated irrelevant or inappropriate messages), or exceedingly off-topic posts, as these are generally not permitted on PureZC. Gravedigging, the action of intentionally posting messages on very old topics that have had no activity for a long time, should also be avoided unless there is sufficient reason to bring the topic back and it would be unproductive to create a new topic. Further, consecutive posts within 15 minutes in the same topic are not allowed and will be automatically merged by the forum software.
In creating an atmosphere for healthy and productive discussion, it is expected that all posts are in English and are written in a way that would make sense to a reasonable person. This includes, but is not limited to, avoiding excessive typos or abbreviations, maintaining proper spelling and grammar, and refraining from excessive leetspeak (writing in such a way that standard letters are replaced with numbers or special characters that resemble the original letters in appearance). We understand if English is not your primary language and will be more lenient in those cases, as it is usually simple to tell these cases apart from intentional attempts at being incomprehensible.
Because signatures are automatically present on most of your posts, they are considered a part of your posts on PureZC, and therefore must follow all rules and guidelines of the community. In general, your signature sizes should not be unreasonably large such that it overly interferes with the viewing experience and makes it difficult to read through topics and threads. To that end, the forum software imposes a few restrictions on your signatures, namely that only up to 10 images, each smaller than 600 x 200 pixels, are allowed and that only up to 12 lines are permitted.
3. No Inappropriate Content or Materials
As a member of the PureZC community, it is important to consider the maturity level of all members and the appropriateness of the content you post. The forums, as well as any other PureZC venue, are meant to be safe spaces for everyone, regardless of age (above 13 years) or background. Thus, your posts and content on the forums should be safe-for-work and appropriate for all members, avoiding excessive violence, profanity, gore, or sexual material. Pornography is strictly prohibited on all PureZC venues with no exceptions. Any copyrighted materials cannot be distributed without the explicit permission and credit of the original author(s), and any clearly illegal materials, including ROMs, cannot be distributed under any circumstances.
Please note that specifically asking where to find any inappropriate content or materials will be treated as though you had posted that content to begin with, and will be dealt with appropriately by the staff team.
4. No Duplicate Accounts
Each member of the community is only allowed to have one account. Exceptions for accounts that represent a group of members (such as a team of people all involved in the development of a quest in Zelda Classic) may be allowed on a case-by-case basis. If you register multiple accounts without permission, any accounts past the original will be immediately banned and the original account will be responsible both for any prior infractions committed by the duplicate accounts and for any additional infractions committed in violation of this rule.
This policy also prohibits ban evasion by means of forming a new account. In these circumstances, the new account will likely be permanently banned, with the original account receiving increasingly harsher penalties based on the severity and amount of ban evasion attempts. Rather than countenance the idea of ban evasion, please use the Staff Dropbox to submit an appeal on your own behalf to explain your reasons and evidence for disagreeing with the staff decision resulting in your ban. Please see the Ban Appeals section below for more details.
5. The Staff Handles Member Infractions
The staff team, in its own capacity, exists to properly handle member infractions to the rules and guidelines of the community. As such, do not recommend or demand punishments (including bans) for members that you feel are breaking the rules. Additionally, do not participate in vigilantism by taking matters into your own hands as though you have the authority to handle member rule violations.
If you feel as though a member has committed an infraction of the rules and guidelines of the community or otherwise has done something to significantly disrupt the community, simply make use of the report feature present on most written content on the site, including forum posts, database posts, and PMs (private messages). We will review and handle the situation as deemed appropriate to resolve any issues. Please see the Reporting Posts and Content section below for more details.
6. Be Considerate with Reviews and Ratings
Ratings should reflect your own opinions after trying the database submission for yourself. Do not rate quests or other database submissions solely based on watching a Let's Play or stream, or based on the description and screenshots alone. Written reviews that do not assign a numerical rating are generally an exception and may be based on viewing.
Database entries should be rated with your own personal opinion and not manipulated in attempt to correct other members' ratings. That is, do not rate submissions higher or lower than you normally would with the intent of undermining other ratings or adjusting the overall score.
While we do not like policing opinions on things like star ratings, we also expect them to be consistent with community standards. For example, if someone consistently ranks high-scoring database entries with zero or 1-star ratings, this interferes with the way ratings are intended to work and may need to be addressed. Harsh yet constructive opinions and those that go against a general consensus are totally acceptable. It is only if a larger pattern of significant deviance from the community's standards emerges that it is considered a problem. Star ratings below 3 are meant to be applied with increasing rarity, and we do not expect the fan submissions here to be held to professional standards. While enforcement of this rule is very rare and only applicable in extrenuating circumstances, members doing this may be asked to modify their reviews and scores, or be subject to removal of reviews or loss of database privileges.
Constructive criticism is of course encouraged in reviews, but please try to be respectful of the person who submitted it. Just like with other areas of the forum, harassment will not be tolerated in the reviews and comments on a submission.
Finally, before submitting reviews and ratings to the database, users are required to accept the follow guidelines, which succinctly summarizes the above information.
7. Elastic Clause
As PureZC continues to grow and evolve, it is important to continually maintain a safe and respectful environment for all members. The staff team works tirelessly to establish comprehensive rules and guidelines that are meant to address the majority of circumstances that may arise. However, because no set of rules and guidelines can cover all circumstances, the staff reserves the right to use its own judgement in dealing with various community disruptions and be more lenient or strict than normal as the situation requires. Our goal as a staff team is to create comprehensive rules and guidelines that apply to a wide range of situations, with the use of the elastic clause kept to a minimum. When an unexpected or rare situation occurs that requires exercising the elastic clause, the staff team will carefully consider the circumstances and we will be sure to explain why we believe the behavior is not acceptable and why it disrupts the peace of the community. It is the responsibility of the staff team to continuously monitor the use of the elastic clause and make appropriate additions or revisions to the PureZC community rules and guidelines that help maintain a consistent standard of behavior for all members.
Staff Member Expectations
The PureZC staff team serves the crucial role of maintaining the peace of the community and is there to be a resource and guide to the rest of the members. Being a staff member is a privilege and comes with a great deal of responsibility. In essence, to be a staff member is to make a commitment to the members of this community to uphold the virtues and dignity a staff member's presence represents. While staff members should be an active participant of the community just like any other active member, they also need to exhibit a much higher standard of behavior in serving as a great role model for the community.
There are two varieties of staff members that you will encounter on PureZC. To view which members are a part of the staff team, please check the Moderating Team page. Other members may be listed on this page if they have moderation capabilities in specific forums for particular circumstances, though official members of the staff team will be one of the following.
- Moderators are primarily responsible for overseeing member interactions on the discussion forums and Discord server, which includes reviewing reports, mediating member disputes, discussing issues with members, issuing staff actions for rule violations, and handling various technical problems. Additionally, they are responsible for processing and approving database submissions and moderating any interactions in the reviews, ratings, and comments sections of the database.
- Administrators share the same responsibilities as Moderators, and also handle site-related administrative responsibilities including forum management, permissions, member groups, and technical backend issues. Administrators are usually responsible for the most sensitive discussions with members, as well as hiring new staff members and letting them go.
Below is a list of expectations that is essential for all staff members to comply with. These expectations reinforce the commitment of staff members to serve as the role models for the community and also help maintain a positive and productive atmosphere on PureZC.
- Accountability: Staff members are accountable to the rules and guidelines of PureZC just like any other member. As leaders within the community, it is essential that staff members hold themselves to the highest standard of behavior and conduct. This means being responsible for their actions and decisions, considering the long-term impacts of their decisions, accepting the consequences of their behavior, and striving to maintain the integrity and reputation of the community at all times. Staff members will uphold the community rules and guidelines, be professional and impartial in their interactions with members even in the face of difficult or contentious situations, and make decisions that are in the best interest of the community as a whole. When mistakes are made, staff members must be willing to admit fault, apologize, and make the necessary changes to avoid similar incidents in the future. Repeated violations of staff member expectations or violations of the PureZC rules and guidelines by a staff member will result in their potential removal from the staff team in addition to potentially stricter consequences than described in the PureZC rules and guidelines.
Commitment: Staff members are expected to dedicate time, effort, and enthusiasm towards the goals and objectives of the community, which requires being fully invested in their role and demonstrating a genuine interest in the well-being and success of the community. To that end, staff members are expected to be reasonably accessible to the community and to be able to carry out their duties in a timely manner. This includes being regularly available to respond to messages, inquiries, and other requests from members of the community by logging in to the forums and other PureZC venues regularly in addition to responding regularly to staff discussions and initiatives. Staff members should also communicate their availability to the community and other staff members, particularly in cases where they are unable to be available for an extended period of time. This will help to ensure that other staff members are able to step in and provide support as needed. Finally, staff members, in showing a commitment to the community, should also be open to feedback and willing to make changes and improvements by continuously evaluating their performance and seeking out ways to improve and take on new responsibilities. By consistently demonstrating a strong commitment to the community, a staff member is better able to foster a positive and supportive environment for all members.
- Adaptability: In a dynamic and constantly evolving community, it is essential that staff members have the ability to adapt and evolve their approaches. This includes being open to new ideas and constructive feedback, as well as being willing to reassess and modify their own strategies and approaches as needed. Moreover, staff members should recognize and respond to the unique needs of different community members by understanding and accommodating diverse perspectives, cultures, and backgrounds, as well as being willing to respond to the changing needs and priorities of the community over time. Finally, staff members are responsible for identifying and addressing community-wide changes through the development and implementation of effective solutions that positively contribute to the community, with the ultimate goal of ensuring the continued growth and success of PureZC.
- Knowledgeability: Being knowledgeable is an essential aspect of being a staff member at PureZC. It is expected that all staff members maintain a level of knowledge and understanding of the community and its operations, as well as an understanding of the rules, guidelines, and policies that govern it. A staff member who is knowledgeable is able to effectively answer questions, provide guidance, and resolve issues for members of the community in a prompt and efficient manner. To achieve this, staff members are expected to regularly familiarize themselves with updates, changes, and news related to the community, as well as stay up to date with any relevant topics, such as new trends in online communities, changing processes, or other developments that could impact the community. When a staff member lacks knowledge about a certain topic, it is their responsibility to research and educate themselves, either by consulting with other staff members or by utilizing other resources.
Transparency: Staff members are expected to showcase adequate transparency in all their dealings with the community, as this is vital in building trust and confidence in the staff team among the community members, as well as promoting accountability, fairness, and integrity. This means being clear and open in the reasoning behind decisions and policies and keeping community members informed about changes, updates, or any significant developments. Staff members should also be transparent about their personal biases, conflicts of interest, and relationships with other members of the community to avoid any appearance of impropriety. Furthermore, staff members should be transparent in their enforcement of the community rules and guidelines, ensuring that members are aware of the consequences of their actions and decisions. This means communicating clear, concise, and fair warnings to members who violate the rules, and consistently applying the consequences of their actions in a transparent manner.
Staff Actions and Warning System
Staff actions are the decisions taken by the staff to address violations of the community rules and guidelines and remedy disruptions to the community. In general, the staff team can employ a wide variety of tools in response to member infractions depending on their severity, but the main actions taken are staff notices, warning points, and bans.
Staff notices are usually friendly yet formal messages asking a member to discontinue very minor violations of the community rules and guidelines. They also serve the purpose of steering members in the right direction to avoid complications in the future. Staff notices can be given in one of two ways: either by sending a PM (private message) to the member(s) in violation of very minor rules or by publicly posting in the forums or site using the staff notice purple text. While this staff action is more relaxed than the rest, staff notices should still be taken seriously and we expect members to discontinue the behavior that led to them, as repeated offenses can lead to the increasingly harsher penalties listed below.
Warning points are issued for minor offenses and for repeated very minor offenses. These warning points exist for the purpose of tracking the more minor infractions on PureZC, but should still be taken as a indication that certain behaviors need to change or discontinue. When receiving warning points, you will be informed by PM (private message) by the staff team regarding the reasoning behind the action taken and why we feel it is deserving of warning points being issued. Additionally, you will receive a staff warning notification on your account that you must acknowledge and accept before being able to post again.
Bans are the most significant tool used by the staff team to deal with major offenses or continued repetition of more minor offenses, or to deal with continuously problematic and disruptive members. Being banned from the site is done by changing your user group to Banned, which restricts you from accessing certain parts of the site and disables posting almost everywhere on the forums and the site. You are only allowed to create topics in the Staff Dropbox forum or PM (private message) members in order to maintain correspondence with the staff team if necessary for ban appeals and other concerns. Ban lengths vary depending upon the severity of the actions performed to receive the ban and the number of previous bans you have received, and in general range from about a few days to several months or more. When this staff action is deemed to be appropriate, you will receive a PM informing you of the staff's decision to ban you from the site along with the reasons why. The most severe of bans are either indefinite or permanent. Indefinite bans are open to appeal in the future if you have demonstrated the level of self-reflection and improvement necessary for the staff to feel comfortable lifting the ban. Permanent bans, on the other hand, are not open to appeal, and are reserved for the most extreme of circumstances, such as threatening the integrity and security of the site or for members who persist without remorse in harassing members and staff while banned.
On PureZC, the warning points system is set up so that each member is able to accumulate up to a total of three possible points. As mentioned earlier, repeated very minor offenses or most minor offenses will result in the issuance of warning points. Typically, you will receive one warning point for each infraction that occurs, though up to three warning points may be given at one time depending on the severity of the infractions. Each set of warning points issued will remain on your account until they expire after 90 days (three months), though keep in mind that this expiration is run on a scheduled task, so it is not instantaneous once the expiration date is reached. If you accumulate the maximum of three warning points on your account, you will receive a ban of appropriate length depending on the severity of the infractions. Note that major offenses leading to any form of a ban implicates that you will receive the necessary warning points needed to reach three total points in addition to the ban itself. Once the ban is lifted, if you again reach three warning points by any means (or you violate the rules and guidelines with three points still on your account), you will receive yet another ban of increasing length. This process continues until your are either indefinitely or permanently banned off the site.
Case-by-case staff actions may also be executed to address unique circumstances or disruptions to the community. These can include consequences like revoking your PureZC database access, removing access to particular forums, or placing all your posts in a moderator queue that allows the staff to review and approve your posts before they become visible to the public. These types of staff actions will be very rare and are reserved only when the staff feels that they are the best way to resolve the situation.
To further clarify the staff actions process and the offenses that can lead to them, the following is a non-exhaustive list of offenses grouped categorically by severity, along with the most likely resulting staff action chosen to handle the infraction.
- Offenses: Honest mistakes that have minor implications, minor signature violations, and gravedigging.
- Staff Action: The member is sent a staff notice, or a staff notice is posted in the topic with the violation.
- Offenses: Overly bad posting habits, threatening members with staff actions when not a staff member, and repeated very minor offenses.
- Staff Action: The member receives 1-2 warning points depending on the severity of the infraction.
- Offenses: Harassment, violation of the respect others rule, posting NSFW, illegal, or copyright-infringing material, and repeated minor offenses.
- Staff Action: The member receives a ban (in addition to receiving the number of warning points needed to reach three total points) lasting a few days or up to several months depending on the severity of the committed offenses.
- Offenses: Severe bigotry, threats to the site, spam or pornography flooding, rampages against members or staff, and repeated major offenses.
- Staff Action: The member receives an indefinite or a permanent ban depending on the offense.
Please note that while it is rare that circumstances come up requiring a change in procedure, the staff reserves the right to use any staff actions deemed appropriate for the situation at any time (including bans), or to change the procedures described above, if they feel that you consistently cause serious problems to the PureZC community.
Warning and Ban Appeals
If you feel as though your warning or ban was not warranted based on an inaccurate assessment by the staff team, please submit an appeal in the form of a thread in the Staff Dropbox forum. The intent of creating an appeal is to bring to our attention any additional information or context that was not evident when the staff action was taken and should not be used to simply complain about or criticize the staff team's administrative decisions. The staff team, consisting of humans, can sometimes make mistakes, and we will do everything we can to own up to them and rectify a situation if necessary for all members involved in a decision. However, the staff team reserves the right to not modify our staff decisions regarding member infractions if we believe the action taken was appropriate for the circumstances.
Upon receiving the appeal, the staff team will carefully read and consider it while reviewing the initial situation that led to the staff action being taken. You should receive a PM (private message) confirming that we are considering your appeal, and then another PM within a few days indicating our final decision on the matter. The final decision will always be reached after significant deliberations by the staff team to ensure we are making the best decision for the community.
Ban appeals for indefinite bans will be reviewed and considered on a case-by-case basis, with the final decision for lifting the ban based on the contents of the ban appeal itself, the duration of the ban thus far, and our confidence that the banned member submitting the appeal has undergone the necessary self-reflection and improvement to merit being allowed to participate in the community again. Note that lifting an indefinite ban requires a near-unanimous vote from the staff team and is not based on a simple majority consensus. Ban appeals for permanent bans will generally not be considered and will be denied immediately upon receipt.
Reporting Posts and Content
The staff highly encourages members to report posts and other site content that they feel violates the rules and guidelines of the community or is otherwise significantly disruptive to the peaceful, welcoming environment we aim to achieve. There may be information or context that you have about a situation that the staff are not privy to, and it is important for the staff team to have sufficient information to make proper administrative decisions regarding member infractions. This process also allows infractions to be brought to the attention of the staff team if it was missed for any reason. When you submit a report, keep in mind that issue has been handed to the staff team for review. Reports do not give you the clearance to join in on staff discussions regarding what actions to take for the infraction. Instead, you should receive a PM (private message) from the staff team confirming we have received the report and have taken it into consideration. If you do not hear from us in a few days, feel free to reach out using the Staff Dropbox to ensure the issue has not been overlooked.
There are two ways to submit a report to the staff team. The primary and recommended method is to make use of the Report button present on most written content on the forums and site. Upon clicking this button, you will be prompted with a text box to enter your report. Use this space to write any additional information you feel would be useful for the staff team when we review the reported content. The other method, usually reserved for more complicated circumstances that may span multiple posts or topics, is to create a thread in the Staff Dropbox forum detailing your issues and concerns that require staff assistance.
If you are reporting a PM (private message), please keep in mind that you are also sending a conversation invite to the staff. This means that staff members capable of viewing the report can enter the conversation if they find it necessary to obtain context and they will be listed as conversation participants. This is almost the equivalent of clicking on Add under Invite Participants and adding some staff members from there. While the staff will keep everything in the PM confidential, you should still carefully consider whether you want the staff to become involved with an existing PM in a staff capacity or not. Once it is reported, almost everything within the private conversation can potentially be subjected to the rules and guidelines, similar to a normal thread. However, do not let this discourage you from reporting things if there is a serious issue you want the staff to assist you with.
And with that, thank you for taking the time to read through the PureZC community rules and guidelines! We realize it is quite a lot of information to take in, but we truly aim to create a positive and friendly environment for everyone, and we appreciate everyone's contributions in creating such an atmosphere. Please enjoy your stay here and have fun!