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Sonics Rising Community Guidelines

Some helpful guidelines to make our site a satisfying place to hang out.

Edited by Joanna Nesgoda

Michael Dodge
Sonics Rising is the best blog on the internet for a team that doesn't exist, I suspect.  This comes from a dedicated staff of volunteers and some incredibly loyal and passionate fans of the Seattle SuperSonics.  You are all amazing, even if you don't agree with me 100% of the time.  Thank you for making this site what it is.

We have been long overdue for an updated set of Community Guidelines here at Sonics Rising.  We started on this process back in April 2013, but never completed the work.  It has been a regular topic of discussion among our staff. If you frequent other SBN sites, you may have noticed their guidelines as being clearer and more complete than our own.  It is time for us to remedy that so we may all move forward together in our common cause of the return of the Sonics to Seattle.

These guidelines are not written in response to anyone or anything beyond our deep desire to make this the best place on the internet for Sonics fans to gather.  We deeply appreciate our regular people who participate here, and we want to grow that pool.

Our own Matt Tucker did all the heavy lifting in putting the following guidelines together.  He's done an excellent job, so please read through them and get familiar with them.


Sonics Rising is a community formed to celebrate the 41-year heritage of the Seattle SuperSonics, the storied and much-beloved National Basketball Association franchise that left in 2008, and champion its revival. We are dedicated to the sport of basketball and to the permanent return of the NBA in the Emerald City, including the construction of a new state-of-the-art arena for our team to call home.

The Sonics Rising community is designed to bring you quality basketball content, including arena and local news related to the basketball efforts, and a forum to discuss that content. We encourage you to share your perspective, and to react to our authors and their opinions.

Please treat our comment threads the way you'd treat your favorite sports bar: keep the conversations passionate, fun, engaging, and respectful. To that end, here are some helpful guidelines to make our site a satisfying place to hang out.

With gracious respect to both Chelsea FC supporters and D.C. United supporters...

1. It's Not Personal: Insults and Personal Attacks Not Welcome
As in any community, there is a diversity of people at Sonics Rising, and with that a diversity of opinions. These can run the gamut of positive and negative views on basketball, players, the NBA as a league, other sports, Seattle, other cities, politics, any number of issues both related or not to our fandom and cause. Our authors will share both news and, on occasion, opinions that you may agree or disagree with, and we encourage differing points of view.

If you are going to comment, it should be on the issue or the opinion expressed and should never be made into a personal attack on the authors or the other commentors. You are welcome to address or reference someone's opinion or action directly and respectfully. Good-natured ribbing is also welcome and even encouraged. Outright attacks or instigating language will not be tolerated and may result in either removal of the offensive comments, banning from the site, or both.

2. You Shall Not Pass: Trolling is Not Allowed
Sonics Rising welcomes any and everyone who wants to talk Seattle SuperSonics basketball or offer their thoughts on our efforts to get our team back. This includes fans of other teams and members of other communities throughout the SB Nation landscape. If you wish to join and contribute, be aware that our primary goals and focus here are on Seattle, the Sonics, and the return of the team. Please also be mindful of the sensitive nature of our history and experience.

Community members also have a responsibility not to troll fans of other teams and members of other SB Nation communities while they contribute to Sonics Rising. Criticism of other teams and fan bases is allowed but should be within reasonable bounds. Any personal attacks are subject to Guideline 1. Community members with multiple or "sock" accounts may be temporarily or permanently banned from Sonics Rising. SR community members shall not troll other communities. Doing so can and will result in banning from Sonics Rising. We have good working relationships with the other SBN sites, and share with one another when trolling occurs.

3. Cheer Up: Relentless Negativity Has No Place Here
Recent SuperSonics history is fraught with adversity and frustration. In our current efforts, there are guaranteed to be a number of twists and turns, both positive and negative. There is an expectation that when negative news is shared or negative opinions are expressed that people are going to react accordingly. We do not wish to tell anyone how to feel or to censor your response.

However, we are a community that both represents Seattle and Sonics fans, and is working toward a positive goal. You are entitled to your opinion and welcomed to be critical of that goal or the efforts to achieve it, within reason. Relentless negativity offers nothing to our community or toward our goal. Kindly defined by the folks over at Pension Plan Puppets:
What constitutes ‘relentless negativity’? Constantly complaining without reasoning or proposing solutions. We're all fans and we all get frustrated [...] but regurgitating the same venom over and over again doesn't help anything or anyone - it just fouls the air, and we're all better than that. If you continue to do nothing but post negativity, you may lose posting privileges [with or] without warning. There's a difference between someone who aims to point out flaws and be constructive and someone who is destructive[...]
Put simply: We are neither an echo chamber nor a camp expecting everyone to join in on a chorus of Kumbaya around the fire, but relentless negativity drives people away. No one wants to be near that guy, and no one should want to be that guy.

4. Size Doesn't Matter: Degree of Fandom is Not Judged Here
Any and all fans of the SuperSonics are welcome and encouraged to contribute, whether you got into the team in the '70s or the '90s, are from Seattle or never set foot in our fair city, had season tickets or never got to see the team play live. Whatever your personal engagement with the team or with our efforts to bring the team back, the door is open to you. No community members should comport themselves as being a "better" fan than any other. We can all agree that the Sonics touched our hearts in some fashion, and we all share that.

5. Oh Fudge: Profanity Should Be Used Sparingly
Profanity is a common aspect of life, and there are occasions where a four-letter word best expresses a feeling on a moment, an opinion, or a piece of news. Sonics Rising does not wish to censor language, but profanity should be kept to a minimum.

Please be mindful that our site might be opened and read in work or family locations where such language is not acceptable. As this is a medium where you have time to think upon your comment between writing and posting, a good rule of thumb is that if you can make your point without profanity, it is encouraged to do so. Excessive profanity will be treated in the same fashion as trolling and relentless negativity.

6. Aww Pucks: NHL and Hockey Conversation Encouraged
As the effort to build a new arena in Seattle commonly includes consideration and design for a hockey configuration that would help to secure an expansion or relocated franchise in the NHL, Seattle hockey fans are in league with Sonics fans, if not one and the same in many occasions. Our fates are intertwined, and Sonics Rising welcomes our hockey brethren.

Again, our primary focus is on basketball, but as NHL Seattle forums are limited, we encourage news, opinion, and discussion on hockey efforts in the Seattle area. This is not an adversarial relationship, and as such, community members should not engage in activity that puts basketball and hockey interests at odds. We're all in this together and would do well to remember that.

7. Raise the Flag: Report Violations, Don't Argue
In simplest terms, flag and move on. If someone is engaging in behavior that is contrary to these guidelines, it is best not to confront but to report the violation by flagging the comment. When reporting, please make sure to include your reason for flagging so that moderators have appropriate context to decide on further action.

Replying with a civil comment reminding someone of these guidelines is acceptable, but a stream of such replies is unnecessary. Flagging does not necessarily guarantee that a comment will be removed or that a community member will be banned. This is solely at the discretion of the moderators.

8. Play Ball: We're Here to Have Fun
We have a purpose and a goal at Sonics Rising, and this is a place where discussions of many tenor will occur. In the end, though, we are all here to celebrate our Sonics past, champion our wonderful city and the extraordinary effort to revive the Green & Gold, and revel in our shared passion.

These guidelines are to ensure a wonderful experience for everyone looking to do just those things. We are a community, so take care of your community. Take pride in it, and have the fun that comes with that pride.

Pride also comes with responsibility. Editors, moderators, and authors of Sonics Rising do not wish to be police. However, violations of any or all of these guidelines are grounds for warnings, short-term bans, and permanent bans. These are not meant to threaten, intimidate, or stifle conversation, but simply to provide opportunity for the best SuperSonics community around.

Welcome to Sonics Rising.  We're glad you're here!