Terms of Use for MMFA Online Comments

Updated October 22, 2012

Media Matters for America is dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.

We are committed to providing a forum where anyone, from anywhere on the political spectrum, can address and respond to the work we do. We request that your posts be relevant to the topic at hand and respectful of others. Media Matters reserves the right to remove comments, topics, and threads that are hateful, derogatory, trolling, spam, irrelevant to the conversation, or in violation of copyrights.

Users who disrupt the forums or violate the terms of use will be banned from participating in our forums. Users agree that they will not create alternative identities or other means to rejoin the forums if they are banned. Any obviously faked email addresses or attempts to rejoin after being banned will result in immediate banning.

If you find a post that violates the above terms, please click on the "flag this comment" link to let us know. We review all flagged posts and will delete or approve them. We will not tolerate abuse of the "flag this comment" feature. It is intended to alert Media Matters to comments that violate these terms of use, not to remove opinions you do not agree with or to retaliate against users you dislike. Users who abuse the privilege of flagging posts will be banned from the site. Administrative decisions to remove posts or ban users are final. Occasionally when banning we will make the decision to also remove past comments that have already been approved if they were not posted in good faith.

These forums are a public space, and Media Matters is not responsible for the opinions expressed in comments here nor is Media Matters responsible for links posted in comments to external sites. Please keep comments civil and on-topic. Name-calling and insults are the top cause for banning on our site, so do not let it happen to you. If you can't make a point about another user's comment without insulting them, you do not have a point worth posting. Threads that become back-and-forth insult fests are subject to multiple post deletion.

In posting on the Media Matters website, you explicitly agree to the terms herein. They may be revised at any time, but if so, we will note the day it was changed. Furthermore, if you use your Twitter account or Facebook account (or another platform), you are also responsible for their respective terms of use and privacy policies.


Some general forum "dos and don'ts"

DO express your opinion as it relates to the item under discussion.

DO respect others' opinions. We expect posters from all parts of the political spectrum here.
Please express your opinion without insulting other posters.

DO ask questions of one another.

DO stay on the topic of the thread.

DO flag posts that you think violate the terms of use outlined above.Media Matters reviews all flagged posts.

DO explain what you're linking to if you post a link in your comment. Don't just post the link.
We delete links that appear to be phishing or scams.

DON'T post the complete text of an article. Rather, post one or two paragraphs and a link to the complete story. It is helpful to other posters if you explain why this article is relevant to the topic at hand. Posts containing complete articles will be removed.

DON'T write an otherwise thoughtful post that includes personal insults or profanity. Your post will be removed. Repeat violators will be banned.

DON'T post here if your sole purpose is to start a flame war. Arguments and debates are fine; obscenity, name-calling, and trolling are not. Violators will be banned.

DON'T take another person's comments personally. Have a thick skin and ignore posters who insist on trolling, obscenities, and name-calling.

DON'T post any unlawful content or statements.

DON'T use posts for advertising of any kind.

DON'T post the same comment on multiple threads. Violators will be banned.

DON'T waste the moderator's time. Posting gibberish, excessive use of caps, and lengthy rants are all subject to deletion.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why can't I post on your site?

Registration is required to post on (guest posts are allowed, but you will be asked to provide an email address in order to post as a guest). See this page for instructions on how to sign up for a Disqus account in order to post. Once you've signed up, you'll be able to post comments and claim your past comment history, provided you still have access to the original email you commented under. Click here for more information on our new web commenting system. If you have trouble with the registration process, please contact Disqus.


How can I help improve the debate in Media Matters' forums?

We rely on our users to help us moderate the heavy traffic in our forums. The most important thing you can do is follow our terms of use above when you post and be respectful of other posters and their opinions. We expect differing points of view on our message boards, and it benefits everyone when we can debate issues without resorting to name-calling and obscenities.
You can also help us by flagging any posts you see that violate the forums' terms of use. The Media Matters staff reviews each flagged post and decides whether to delete or approve it.
Administrative decisions regarding flagged posts are final. We recommend that if you flag a post, you don't respond to it. Users who abuse the "flag this comment" feature will be banned from the forums. The purpose of flagging is to bring Media Matters' attention to comments that violate these terms of use, not to remove opinions you do not agree with or to retaliate against posters you dislike.


Why was my post removed?

Posts are removed for several reasons, including trolling, duplicate or spam posts, posting copyrighted materials, taking the discussion off topic, obscenity, hatefulness, etc. Posts are NOT removed because of the writer's opinions.
All posts connected to a deleted thread or post may also be removed.


Why was I banned?

Users are banned from the Media Matters forums for consistently violating the terms of use of our forums. The most common reasons for banning are name-calling, trolling, and repeatedly taking a discussion far from its original topic. The decision to ban a poster is based on a review of that user's posts and flagged items. We DO NOT ban users because of their opinions. Our goal is to foster lively discussion with opinions from all sides that doesn't degenerate into name-calling and flaming.


Do any of the posters in the forums work for Media Matters?

Media Matters employees will be identified in comments, typically with a notation that reads (MMFA) after the user's name.