In running this blog I will strive as always to be as ethically clear as I can. That is why I have drafted this page in an effort to make it clear exactly where you and I stand. I wish to be as transparent as possible with all such issues and though I am human I am going to try my best.
If this entire policy could be summed up in just a few word those words would be: "Don't be an idiot".
If the above short version is not quite enough below is a lot more text spelling it out for you. I'm going to assume you have read it. If I know you I might let you get away with bending the odd rule but if you are a complete stranger... Thanks for your understanding.
- Please link back to your homepage, blog, Twitter, Facebook profile or something. If I especially liked what you had to say I might want to chat further, thank you or even give you a free gift (I do that sometimes).
- Please try to keep it clean
- You may disagree with me, at length if you wish to. However, expect me to reply if your comment was well argued and respectful but expect me to mangle it if you get rude, insulting, threatening or in any other way abuse my hospitality.
- If you comment and leave a URL (link) then that URL (as long as it goes in the URL box) will be followed by search engines and will contribute towards your site's SEO effort (YMMV). This page and this one may provide more information on that topic.
- If you have a lot to say try to get to the point quickly and leave a line (or two ideally) between blocks of text because it is easier to read.
- If you have a huge amount to say blog it with a link back to me - that's the magic of blogs. (An alternative is just to offer me a guest post (even if you disagree with me))
- You are the author of your comment if in making the comment you break the law I may hand over your details. The exception is if I feel the law is being used unreasonably against free speech and democracy in which case I'll take advice.
- The same goes for disagreeing with each other. Go for it - have a huge debate but be civil. Abusive guests will not be allowed to remain in the party.
- No HTML please.
- IF the spam bot eats your comment message me on facebook or twitter and I will unlock it from the depths.
- At most one link in the body of the text please.
- If you want to share a link just paste in the URL. there are URL shortening services to keep things tidy but the system will make the link a decent size.
- I have a personal comment, contact and feedback form please use it to ask me questions unrelated to the post.
- Please try to stay largely on topic.
- If your comment looks or smells spammy it will have a short life expectancy.
- Submitting lots of good comments over a period of time (not all at once) is a good way to get my attention and have me want to link to you.
- Keywords: A search term is not a name. Asked you for your name, handle, nickname, alias or similar "Kitchen Sinks", "SEO Expert" or "New York Decorators" is not a name, it is spam.
- Only posting "nice site" sucks.
- "Signing off" with a link (comment signature) is spammy and I don't like it.
- I reserve the right to delete comments if I feel I should. After all it is the "my blog". I work hard to make a good blog and I plan on becoming mildly famous (or at least a little infamous) and don't see why that should be abused.
Privacy and Data Protection
Whatever you do when you use the Internet, your computer blasts vast numbers of facts about you to the site you visit. This is a simple fact of life. These facts are not on a scale with the government's loss of data towards the end of 2007 and tend to be things like the numeric address of the computer (IP address) which is needed to get the web page back to you.
If you act like an idiot this data can be used to trace you back to your ISP and if enough complaints are made you could find yourself with no Internet connection. I do not make a habit of recording vast amounts of data about people but the server will log enough to solve any problems. This data is very very boring to go through so for the love of life don't make me read it, please.
In the event that we collect any data from you, it will be stored on the server (now in the UK). I plan to never share any data (on other people) with anyone else without being made to do so by a pile of court orders and a team of fierce looking law enforcers to back them up. Submitting any data will be taken as an indication that you understand this.
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Reviews and Recommendations
I do have other business interests offline and on and may well recommend products in which I have a vested interest. This might influence the neutrality of my point of view and I will generally try to point out if this might be the case. I do not plan to do reviews or posts that have been "sponsored" or subsidised in any way but if ever I do I will disclose this to you in the article.
I plan to earn a little from this blog and to that end will be selecting advertising partners to help cover costs and even get into the profit zone. This might mean that what I advertise and what I want to write about might be at odds. I will try to keep things simple on that front.
I may choose to use affiliate programs to select products to recommend. I trust you are able to notice when I do this and make up your own mind about the products. For this reason, I'm not going to make a big fuss about such links should I use them.
All articles given are opinion only and do not constitute formal advice. In all cases, a professional in the field should be consulted before significant action is taken. We refuse all responsibility for your actions, as a thinking human being, based on what you read here. We hope, however, that what we say is helpful.
Links to third-party sites do not constitute an endorsement.
In 2011 Matt (lead blogger) joined a political party. The views expressed here are his own and not necessarily those of the party or its members. Matt will try not to let his affiliation cause undue bias in reporting but you are welcome to point out if it might look that way to you.
Company and coverage
The views expressed here by any author are the author's at the time of publishing; they are not the opinion of anyone else that might in any way somehow (to your mind) be connected with Thanet Star or the author. As time passes they might stop being the author's views too depending on what they learn in the future.