Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Upstate New York, USA
A few deleted clarifications and musings restored
In switching to manual registrations, access to some of the older rules was inadvertently lost which has led to some confusion about policies. I apologize for this situation and have begun work on a new rules and policies page.
I had participated in a since deleted (it degenerated into criticism of another forum community) thread about a member here being banned elsewhere for linking to a discussion here. Here are some attempts at clarification from that thread:
There is no rule here prohibiting links being posted in these forums to previous and or ongoing discussions of the same or a related item in another forum community. Indeed, links to other relevant discussions on the web are to be encouraged as are citations of relevant printed literature...
Most of the rules here follow common sense sufficiently closely that most reasonable persons will not transgress them even if they have not bothered to read what they are. A repeatedly demonstrated exception is the rule ensnaring the most 'innocent' forum members, specifically the one prohibiting discussion of items presently for sale in the market, particularly items in the process of auction. Trying to resolve questions about a pondered purchase by posting pictures from an auction seems innocent enough. However, this may lead to expression of opinions, correct or incorrect, which may be deemed to unduly interfere with commerce and potentially create liability not only for the posters but also for myself as forum operator. I do not like this rule, but I do not make the law. Would I not be most foolish to ignore legal advice intended for my own protection?
Except for very general discussions about the overall state of the marketplace, specific commercial references and links to commercial activities need to stay completely out of the general discussions forums. Why, beyond the legal implications above? Because, while deal-making and horse-trading is very much a critical central part of any collecting activity, it is also largely antithetical to the spirit of sharing of information, as knowledge gives advantage in such negotiations. And freely sharing knowledge about ethnographic arms and armour in good faith is what these forums have been created to facilitate.