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Editorial Policy

by: matt

Mon Oct 24, 2005 at 00:52:50 AM EDT

Welcome to Michlib! Remember, the editors reserve the right to edit or delete at any time, any diaries or stories that violate these rules or that we simply feel are inappropriate.

Michigan First!

Our focus is on Michigan government and politics. This includes news and analysis dealing with all aspects of Michigan state government, local and county governments, Michigan's delegation to the U.S. Congress, state political parties, and media outlets. Occasionally we might stray into commenting on something of critical national or international importance (with no explicit Michigan angle). However, there are plenty of national liberal blogs for that if it's your primary interest. We suggest Daily Kos (the inspiration for this site). If you really want to talk about a national/international issue here on Michlib, find a way to talk about how it pertains to Michigan. (i.e., how Michigan's Congressional delegation voted and why, etc.)

Behave Yourself

Personal attacks and insults, pure stupidity, and unsubstantiated rumor presented as fact are not allowed. Those comments are often troll-rated by the community until they disappear. If you make a controversial statement of fact, be prepared to back it up with proof. Do not plagiarize: if you are repeating information from another source, always include links to the original document. More information on how to handle copywrited material is available from our Posting Guidelines.

Please, no one-line diaries

If you're linking to another article or site, at least explain why it's important, why people should follow the link. But one-liners are more suited to an open thread than a whole new diary.

Anonymous Bloggers

Our preference is for people who participate on Michlib to use their real names. A comment or a diary post with a real person's name next to it carries far more weight than one without. We do realize though that there may those who need to hide their names to guard against employer retaliation, political embarrassment, etc. As a general guideline, stand by your posts publicly. By doing so, you give yourself (and your post) much more credibility.

Privacy policy

That said, Michigan Liberal will not reveal the identity of those persons who have created an alter-ego for the Internet or who wish to blog pseudonymously. Michigan Liberal will not hand over information that could be used to identify users. Michigan Liberal will not hand out information -- IP addresses used to log comments or create accounts -- that many people regard as useful information in identifying users, since this would chill participation.

Caveat Emptor, baby!

Any anonymous crackhead with a computer has the ability to post to the user diaries (the "recent diaries" and "recommended diaries" boxes to the right). Other than deleting diaries that are spam, pure hate, completely unrelated to Michigan or excessively pornographic - we make no attempt to edit user diaries for content.

Because we allow anyone to write just about anything, you're well-advised to keep your wits about you while you're reading the user diaries. Actually, you would be well-advised to keep your wits about you and continually question ANY media source, no matter how "reputable."

You should have a higher confidence level when reading posts on the front page (main section). A post appearing there has a member of the duly-appointed and elite Michlib editorial junta standing behind it.

Non-Democrat participation

Independents, Greens, Libertarians, and Milliken Republicans are also welcome on Michiganliberal.com. As for neocons and theocons, you can hang out here too - but trolls will be removed as needed.

General FAQ

I'm a Michigan Liberal. How do I write a story on Michiganliberal.com?

First, you have to get yourself a free michiganliberal.com user account. Just click where it says "make new account" in the "Menu" box on the right hand side of the front page. You'll have to enter a valid email address to do all of this. Why? Because it helps discourage spammers and trolls from clogging up our site with junk. Then, once you're logged in, you can click on "Write New Diary".

How do I post a comment to a story?

Once you've set up your account and you're logged in, go to whatever story you want to comment on. Click on "Discuss." Then follow the appropriate links at the bottom.

How do I write a story for the front page?

Unless you're part of an elite cabal of specially invited people, you can't write stories and post them directly on the front page. You can, however, write a story in your diary. When you do that, the title of your story will show up in the "Recent Diaries" box on the right side of the page. If the title is intriguing enough, people will click on it and read what you you have to say. If they really like it, they might click the button on the right that says "recommend diary." If enough people do that, your entry moves up to the "recommended diaries" section near the top of the right column. The nice thing about that is your story is now more visible and will likely stay around for longer.

If your post is really, really good or insightful, we may move your post to the front page. If we notice that you consistently write good stories, who knows? You may be invited to join our secret society - provided you can meet the sacred requirements of initiation.

Why are you such tyrants? Why don't you just let anyone post anything anywhere?

Because the site would rapidly become unreadable, making this all a huge waste of time.

What's all this business about "comment ratings"?

One of the neat things about Michiganliberal.com and the other Scoop/SoapBlox (the name of the software) sites is the ability for users to work together to reward especially insightful commenters, as well as to help get rid of those who are stupid and/or offensive. Here's how it works: comments can be rated on a scale of 0 to 4. As a regular user, you're allowed to rate comments between 1-4. If you post a lot of comments that are rated highly, and rate a lot of other comments, you will eventually become a "trusted user." That will allow you to also rate really bad comments with a 0. If a commenter's comment average (plus some other variables) falls below a certain level, their comments will be hidden from view of all non-trusted users. They'll also probably get nixed by the site admin. Anyway, just remember: don't rate someone a 0 unless they REALLY deserve it.

How do I know if I'm a "trusted user"?

When you go to rate a comment, if "0" is listed as an option - you're a trusted user. Congratulations.

-- Matt, Laura and Jon Eric B.

P.S. Neither Michigan Liberal nor any of the real, living people associated with it are responsible for things that people other than themselves say here or anywhere else. The presence of a comment on this site does not constitute endorsement by anyone other than the person who said it.  And that person, after five minutes of thinking about it, may no longer endorse what he or she just so recently said.

P.P.S. Just to clarify, this site constitutes private property. You, the user, possess no right to make demands upon the person to whom it belongs.  Although it is preferable to not ban people, you can be banned at any moment for anything. Restoration of those privileges is likewise not a right or entitlement. As a demonstration of the awesome might that comes with this power, I have just banned myself and restored my own privileges at the same time.

matt :: Editorial Policy
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