• RAILROAD.NET Forum Rules/Legal/Terms of Service

  • Important information from RAILROAD.NET site administrators. Need help using this site? Check here first! Your question may already have been answered here.
Important information from RAILROAD.NET site administrators. Need help using this site? Check here first! Your question may already have been answered here.

Moderator: Jeff Smith

  by Mike Roque
PLEASE NOTE: Neither Mike Roque or Otto Vondrak are administrators or owners of this site. However, the policies established remain in effect.

This document is designed to clarify various responsibilities of community members here at RAILROAD.NET. Please read it and become familiar with it. These terms may be updated from time to time, so please read them occasionally to make sure you are familiar with them.

Forum-wide Policies
  1. Forum rules
    1. Posts are to be made in the relevant forum. Users are asked to read the forum descriptions before posting. Users consistently posting to the wrong forum may be given a warning (see policing below).
    2. Members should post in a way that is respectful of other users. Flaming or abusing users in any way will not be tolerated and will lead to a warning.
    3. Members are asked to not act as "back seat moderators". If members note an issue which contravenes something in this policy document they are welcome to bring it to the attention of a Site Admin. Only do this if a moderator has not replied within a reasonable period of time. Members who consistenly "act" as moderators may be warned.
    4. Members should remember this board is aimed at a general audience. Posting pornographic or generally offensive text, images, links, etc. will not be tolerated and will lead to a warning.
    5. Members are asked to respect the copyright of other users, sites, media, etc. Re-printing material without permision will receive a warning and their post will be removed.
    6. Members should respect the bandwidth of other users and sites. The use of inline () image tags pointing to data stored on third party systems for which the user has not received permission to link to may be removed.
    7. Members should post in a way which is consistent with "normal writing". That is users should not post excessive numbers of emoticons, large, small or coloured text, etc. Similarly users should not SHOUT or use excessive punctuation (e.g. ! and ?) in topic titles or posts. Users consistently abusing this will be warned.
    8. Members should use an appropriate, descriptive title when posting a new topic. Examples of bad titles include; "Help me!", "I'm stuck!", "dumb question", etc. Examples of good titles include; "Help with Decoder Install", "Looking for Info on Locomotive X", etc.
    9. Members are welcome to use the test forum for general "test purposes". These may include checking signatures, testing a link or image, etc. (subject to previous points on decency, bandwidth, etc.). Users posting in the test forum just to increase their post counts will be warned.
    10. Spam is not tolerated here under any circumstance. Users posting spam will be warned and their post removed. We have many advertising options if you're interested in advertising on RAILROAD.NET.
    11. The Site Admins and Moderators reserve the right to edit or remove any post at any time. The determination of what is construed as indecent, vulgar, spam, etc. as noted in these points is up to Site Admins and not users.
    12. The above forum rules where applicable also apply to private messaging. Abuse of the private messaging system may lead to warnings (as above) and/or the revokation of private messaging.
    13. Do not disclose, either directly or indirectly, information that is not generally available to the public or is otherwise privileged or confidential. (2007-09-19)
    14. Redacting, deleting, or other forms of similarly "blanking" your own posts are against site policy, and will be met with a warning. (2008-9-20)
    15. English is the language of railroad net. If you link to a foreign language page, you are responsible for furnishing the English translation of same.
  2. Signatures
    1. Signatures may contain up to three lines (one line being that displayed on a browser opened to 800px width) of text (of small or normal size).
    2. Text sizes should be between 9 and 12 (small and normal). Text in signatures is subject to the same conditions as posts with respect to decency, normal writing, emoticons, etc.
    3. Please refrain for excessive and/or irrelevant commercial messages/advertising in your signature. If you would like to advertise, we offer banner advertising at very affordable rates.
    4. Links are permitted in signatures. Links are included within the text and image limits above (we prefer you use the URL tags to embed the link in text). Links to offensive sites may be subject to removal. We reserve the right to edit links or link text to mask URL's that might be construed as advertising.
    5. Users abusing these rules will be warned.
  3. Avatars
    1. Users are permitted to utilize a gallery avatar or to link to one of their own (subject to previous points on misuse of bandwidth). User defined avatars are to be no larger than 150 pixels square, contain no animation, contain no image which attempts to portray the user as having an official status here (e.g. mimiking ranks or copying avatars of Site Admins), may not exceed 10KB in filesize and have a consistently high availability (i.e. links to images on slow servers or those prone to failure may be removed).
    2. Avatars are subject to the same conditions as posts with respect to decency, etc.
    3. Users abusing these rules will be warned and/or may lose their avatar privileges.
  4. Policing
    1. RAILROAD.NET operates a three strike policy. Users will be warned a maximum of three times for any and all offences in a three month period. If the need arises for a fourth warning a temporary ban will be put in place of between 1 to 7 days.
    2. Arguing with Site Admins after having received a warning will lead to an immediate additional warning. Should this exceed three strikes a temporary ban will be put in place as above.
    3. Users who feel they have been unfairly warned are welcome to contact a Site Admin , e.g. if warned by a Moderator you should contact a Site Admin. If they feel you were treated badly they may remove a warning. Their decision is final.
    4. Any attempt to circumvent a temporary ban will lead to that ban being made permanent. Circumvention includes re-registering under a non-banned username, changing IP addresses to evade an IP ban, registering a new email account of evade an email ban. Circumvention includes posting as an anonymous user.
    5. An exception to the three strike rule applies when users contact Site Admins or Moderators personally (via any method) and post insulting, indecent or vulgar material. Such users may be subject to an immediate permanent ban.
    6. Permanent bans are a last resort and thought is given before implementing them. While RAILROAD.NET may consider lifting permanent bans from time to time this is a rare occurence.
  by Otto Vondrak
How to post and quote news stories from the web

As per our user agreement and forum rules, RAILROAD.NET policy forbids the straight copy-and-pasting of copyrighted works, including news stories posted to the web:

1e. Members are asked to respect the copyright of other users, sites, media, etc. Re-printing material without permision will receive a warning and their post will be removed.
We ask that if you have a railroad-related news story to share that you provide a link, summarize in your own words, and also provide a brief quotation. A brief quotation can be the first two paragraphs of a long story, or the first two sentences of a short story. To quote text, simply copy and paste your short passage into your message window. Then highlight that text and click the "Quote" button. "Quote" tags will automatically be added, like this:
Code: Select all
[quote]Here is some quoted text.[/quote]
"But after a while the link doesn't work and you wont be able to read the original story..."

We understand that some of the smaller news sites don't leave their stories up forever, or move them into a pay-per-view archive. Hopefully your brief passage and the resulting discussion will be enough to communicate the original information.

Please contact us if you have any questions. Thank you for helping us maintain and protect copyrighted material on the Web.

  by Otto Vondrak
Here's an example:

I read today that the study on improving the Danbury Branch will be completed this year. Let's wait and see! Let's hope we're near the end of the cycle of endless studies. Here's a link to the article from the Danbury News-Times...

Danbury Metro-North study should be done by year's end
By Brian Lockhart
Updated: 02/24/2009 11:58:38 PM EST

HARTFORD -- Transportation Commissioner Joseph Marie pledged to lawmakers Tuesday a lengthy, federally funded study for improving Metro-North Railroad's Danbury branch will be completed by year's end. "I realize there's been a lot of collective angst with the pace of developments along the branch lines," Marie, who was hired last summer by Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell, told the legislature's transportation committee. His comments came during a public hearing on a bill, submitted by Sen. Toni Boucher, R-Wilton, that would require the DOT to increase the pace of improving the Danbury line.
  by Mike Roque
If you find a user that is spamming the board or otherwise posting inappropriate material, simply click the Report Post icon:

This is the most efficient way to bring a post to our attention so our moderators and/or admins can take the appropriate action(s).


  • Don’t respond to the inappropriate message. This just makes a bigger mess for us to clean up.
  • Don’t email or PM moderators or admins about the message. Reporting the post places it in a queue for us to handle in a centralized fashion.

Thanks for helping to keep the RAILROAD.NET forums on-topic! :)
  by Mike Roque
Over the past few months, we have been met with many requests to remove posts or accounts because the material posted to RAILROAD.NET is either "embarrassing" to the person who posted it, or is otherwise drawing unwelcome attention from an employer, or possibly putting their employment or personal safety at risk.

If RAILROAD.NET is to remain a reliable information resource for the railfan community, we cannot in good faith go back and "redact" or edit or eliminate posts that may be called in question. It is the responsibility of the individual user to decide what is and is not appropriate to post. Likewise, posting unverifiable news without a source attribution is just as damaging as posting a rumor or other hearsay. Our forums are open to the public and available to be read by anyone. Here is a simple guideline: If you wouldn't say it in person, do not post it on our web site.

We refer you to Rule 1m of the RAILROAD.NET Forum Rules:
Do not disclose, either directly or indirectly, information that is not generally available to the public or is otherwise privileged or confidential. (2007-09-19)
While we do not wish any of our users to be put into a position where their employment is at risk or they expose themselves to a possible lawsuit, we stress that our users must take personal responsibility for what they decide to share on our forums. If you have questions or comments about this policy, please contact a site admin.
  by Jeff Smith

This notice pertains primarily but is not limited to forums such as computer gaming, items for sale, railroad models and modelling, various links, etc.

Recommendations, advisories, opinions and links provided here are the opinion of the member/poster. Railroad.net makes no specific endorsement, implied or otherwise. If you follow a link or recommendation, YOU DO SO AT YOUR OWN RISK.

In other words, "Caveat Emptor", or let the buyer beware.


Jeff Smith
Site Admin
  by John_Perkowski

Recently, some users felt the need to invoke the memory of the 3d German Reich (1933-1945) in their postings or responses. In internet parlance, this is using "Godwin's Law": At some point a conversation degenerates to the point where a situation is compared to Nazi Germany, one of its actions, or one of its governmental entities.

If you believe a particular situation belonging to a railroad, anywhere in the world, is sufficient to invoke Godwin's Law and the memory of Nazism, contact your forum moderator or an admin first. Suffice it to say, in this case, permission is better than forgiveness.