The following is a list of the rules that are curerntly used to Moderate MHF. Please read them carefully.
1. No bumping. To bump a thread is to post a reply to it purely in order to raise the thread's profile and return it to the top of the list of active threads. This is not allowed at MHF. If a member wants to draw attention to a thread that has not received a reply, s/he is asked to post a reply that contains something of value (such as further progress that has been made on the question).
2. No cross posting. To cross post is to send the same post to several forums or subforums. Unfortunately, replies in one forum are not visible to people reading the post in other forums and this can lead to duplication of effort and hence waste of time. Members are asked to post their question once only and in the correct subforum.
3. No flaming. Flaming is hostile and insulting interaction between users. It can stem from a variety of issues including misunderstandings, frustration, perceptions of unfairness or simply the desire for attention and for entertainment derived at the expense of others. It is not tolerated at MHF so please be mindful of what and how you post. If you think a particular post is inappropriate, please report it to a Moderator using the Report Post tool (the fourth icon bottom left from Thanks button on all posts) and request that the post be reviewed.
4. Use thread titles that indicate the nature of the question. The title of a post is meant to be a very brief and accurate description of what your question is about. As it is assumed that everyone needs help (usually urgently) titles such as ‘Urgent help needed’ etc. are pointless, annoying, ineffective and lazy. Using an excessive amount of symbols such as ? and ! in a post title should also be avoided for reasons already given. A post with an effective title will generally get more views than one with a useless title.
5. Choose the correct subforum. The key to posting a question in the correct subforum is to consider the content of the question, not where the question has come from. Questions should be posted in the subforum that is most appropriate to their content. For example, questions about differential equations should be posted in the Differential Equations subforum, NOT Calculus. Questions that are pre-calculus in content should be posted in the Pre-calculus subforum, NOT Calculus. When in doubt, report your post to a Moderator using the Report Post tool (located near the bottom left corner of all posts - it looks like a triangle with an exclamation mark ! inside) and request that the location of your post be reviewed. And please use a different title for each new thread.
6. Do not cheat. Teachers expect questions that form part of an assessment that contributes towards the final grade of a student to be the work of that student and not the work of others. For that reason, MHF policy is to not knowingly help with such questions. If a question presents in such a way as to suggest that it falls in this category, a Moderator will Close the thread (with an explanation as to why the thread was closed). The original poster can always send a pm to the Moderator to discuss the situation but if the Moderator is unconvinced, then the thread will remain closed. When a Moderator is certain that a particular member is attempting to cheat, that member will be banned and the offending thread removed. Where possible, the institute at which the member studies at will also be notified and a copy of the thread provided. This may sound harsh but the fact is that MHF places a high premium on academic honesty and integrity.
7. Do not edit or delete questions after getting help. When a question is edited or deleted after help is given, the context of the help is subverted and the thread becomes difficult for other members to follow. Threads vandalised in this way will get Closed, the deleted question will be restored and the member will be Infracted. The material posted on MHF is a body of knowledge that is a valuable resource for everyone. It is unacceptable for this resource be vandalised. Note that a member who deletes a question after getting help casts suspicion upon themselves of cheating. Be careful what you post. Once you have posted a question or information, it will not be removed. It will remain viewable to all members of the public - this includes all staff and students of the institute you may study at - and may show up on search engines such as Google.
8. Do not ask too many questions in one thread. Do not ask more than two questions in a post. And do not tag new questions onto a thread that have nothing to do with the original question (follow-up questions are OK). Otherwise the thread gets convoluted and difficult to follow. It is better for forum organisation and better for you to get your questions answered in a more timely manner if you start new threads as necessary for remaining questions. eg. If you have five questions, post two of them in two threads and start a new thread for the remaining one etc. And if the question has more than two parts to it, it is best to post only that question and its parts in the thread and start a new thread for other questions.
9. Start a new thread for a new question. Don't tag a new question onto an existing thread. Otherwise the thread can become confusing and difficult to follow.
10. Do not post part of the question in the post title and the rest in the main body of the post. Post all of the question in the main body of the post. Otherwise it can cause confusion and delay getting a useful answer.
11. Show some effort. If you want help with a question it is expected that you will show some effort. Effort might include showing your working, taking the time to learn how to typeset equations using latex (there is an entire subforum devoted to this), formatting your question so that it is more easily understood, using effective post titles and posting in the appropriate subforum, making a genuine attempt to understand the help that is given before asking for more help and learning from previous questions asked. Moderators reserve the right to Close threads in cases where the member is not making a genuine effort (particularly if the member is spamming the forums with multiple questions of exactly the same type). It should also be remembered that all contributors to MHF are unpaid volunteers and are under no obligation to answer a question.
12. Please post in English. Do not use text/leet abreviations. DO NOT SCREAM (it is rude). Do not use swear words or any other improper language. Do not make racist or bigoted comments.
13. Please help only with questions that you are quite certain you know how to do. Before posting help, please ask yourself: Is what I posted clear and reasonably easy to understand? Does it help the poster? Is it useful?
14. Do not give premature explanations of hints. When you see that someone is already helping a member and is waiting for the original poster to give feedback, please don't give more hints or a full solution. Wait at least 24 hours so that the original poster has a chance to respond.
15. Stay on-topic. Do not make totally pointless threads. It is okay to make jokes, without them the forum would be boring. But do not interrupt a serious discussion with something completely off-topic.
16. Do not ask for help in Visitor Messages or Private Messages. Post your question in the appropriate math forum and then be patient and wait for a reply.
17. Links in a signature to commercial websites are not allowed unless specific approval by an Administrator has been given. Signatures containing overtly evangelical or political statements are not allowed. Signatures deemed to contain inappropriate content will be removed.
18. Do not use a pornographic picture as your avatar or as an image upload. Do not post pornographic content or links to pornagraphic material.
19. In posting on Math Help Forum you are agreeing that your posted work may be reused by MHF in any way that the Administrators and/or Moderators deem appropriate without seeking any further permission but with due attribution where appropriate to the originator. This in no way effects your rights to reuse any such material for any purpose you see fit.
20. This list of forum rules is not necessarily exhaustive. The duty of a MHF Moderator is to enforce forum rules and manage the day-to-day affairs of MHF as it applies to the stream of user contributions and interactions. The relative effectiveness of this user management directly impacts the quality of MHF in general, its appeal and its usefulness as a community of interrelated users. The unpleasant consequences that occur when this duty is neglected are readily observed at various other websites. All posts are subject to review by the MHF Moderators and Administrators. Moderators and Administrators reserve the right to edit and delete posts and close threads, issue Warnings and Infractions and perform any other actions and interventions s/he deems are necessary to perform his/her duty.