Welcome to RetailWatchers!
You should consider yourself a "probationary" user at first. Consider lurking and getting a feel for the board before posting. If you make twenty posts on your first day, understand that you will probably be viewed warily by me and by other board members. If a significant number of these posts are off-topic, you may even be banned right off the bat.
Here are some suggestions for new users:
The Ground Rules:
1. Please use the correct forum for you post, and please use a descriptive term in your subject when starting a new topic. For example, include the name of the chain you're discussing, and any specific location your post is about. Subjects like "A Question" or "Need Some Info" are virtually useless. If your reply is not related to the original topic at hand, please start a new topic.
2. Keep the discussion friendly. Heaping abuse on fellow posters is the quickest way to get your post removed and yourself banned.
3. Please use correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Avoid annoying internet shorthand and jargon that some people might not understand. Word censors are in place to combat profanity and stupid "text-speak" acronyms. Undecipherable posts are subject to editing or deletion.
4. Post only when you have something relevant to add. Avoid "me too" posts or posts which are not of general interest to others on the board and "do you remember" posts which contain only the question and no specific information. Private conversations should be carried out offline.
5. Do not post the same message to multiple threads. A message should be posted only once. If duplicates are found, all but the version in the most relevant forum will be deleted.
6. Please limit your quotes to the part of the previous message that is relevant to your reply. It is not necessary (nor even desirable) to quote the entire message, particularly if there are pictures included. That said, it IS generally a good idea to use quotes, particularly in a long, complex thread; you can't assume that everyone knows what you're responding to.
7. Please divide long posts into paragraphs, and please skip a line between each paragraph. This is an internet standard and will make your posts MUCH easier to read. A giant, unbroken wall of text is a horrible thing to be confronted with, and it's a sure way to send lots of people running to the next post to avoid reading yours.
8. Please do not under any circumstances post inline links to photos hosted on someone else's website without obtaining their permission first. This is EXTREMELY rude and involves stealing someone else's hosting bandwidth. An acceptable alternative would be to post a link to the URL of the page on their website which contains the photo.
9. Where possible, please post LINKS to articles in newspapers, etc. rather than copying and pasting the actual text. BRIEF quotes from articles are OK, as long as they are included as an addendum to your own commentary. In any case, you MUST include the source of the article.
10. Please do not use any current trademarks as your avatar. There are potential legal issues surrounding this, and any such avatars will be removed.
11. If you post commercial, marketing, or promotional materials (current coupon offers, etc.), your post will be DELETED WITHOUT COMMENT and you will be BANNED WITHOUT WARNING OR FURTHER DISCUSSION.
The focus of this board is current retail news and updates, specifically that of chain supermarkets in the US and Canada, and that's what the bulk of the forum areas cover.
The following are generally acceptable topics:
-- Supermarket news
-- Supermarket architecture (current remodels from 2000-on)
-- Current operations and corporate structure.
-- Current operations of other chain retailers and related businesses.
Some other topics may be acceptable as well. If you see a category or forum title that fits, you're probably OK.
The following topics are unacceptable in ANY forum and will result in your post being deleted:
-- Customer service issues.
-- Discussion of current labor or strike-related issues.
-- Blatant bashing of a currently-operating chain or obvious boosterish insider posts.
-- Rude or abusive comments directed toward any other member.
-- Advertisements for other websites, although links to RELATED and ON-TOPIC sites are acceptable.
-- Advertisements or solicitations for ANY product or service, including eBay or other online auctions. If you're trying to buy or sell something, do it somewhere else.
-- Discussions or questions about the operation of the board; please EMAIL me instead.
Repeated violations may result in your being banned from the board.
Things that are likely to get your post deleted, edited, or moved to another forum:
-- Any post involving unacceptable topics shown above.
-- Irrelevant "me too" type posts or those which add nothing but "we have those in my city too" to the discussion; your post should state or ask something specific.
-- Identical messages posted to multiple forums/topics.
-- Messages with such significant grammar, spelling, or punctuation issues that the average person would find them difficult to read.
-- Messages posted to an inappropriate forum (e.g. a post requesting information about an unidentified store being posted under "specific chains", or a post about current operations being posted in a history forum).
-- "Bumping", or attempting to move the topic back to "the top" without making some NEW and RELEVANT contribution.
Things that are likely to get you banned immediately:
-- Abuse of other posters. This is (and will remain) a friendly forum. Disagree all you like, but do so in a civil manner.
-- Posts of an off-topic political nature. No one on this board cares about your politics; the topic here is current retail news.
-- Bigoted, or prejudiced comments based on race, political affiliation, religion, sex, or sexual orientation. Comments of this sort will not be tolerated under ANY circumstances.
-- Repeated off-topic or unacceptable posts as defined above.
-- Spam or any type of advertising.
-- Adding a link to your profile that is clearly a "referral" page designed to earn you money from click-throughs. Any user who does this will have the link removed. If the user has had no posting activity either, (s)he will be placed on "inactive" status.
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