Site Rules and Editorial Policy
Who We Are
Atheist Zone is a community for freethinkers and atheists. Freethinkers evaluate truth claims based on reason, logic and evidence, rather than on authority, tradition and dogma. Atheists disbelieve or lack belief in the existence of God or gods. These qualities describe and unite the members of Atheist Zone who otherwise may hold different stances on a wide range of issues and subjects.
Atheist Zone provides a forum for communication among its members, offering community, discussion, debate, support, advice and information in an environment of like-minded people. The editorial policy and code of conduct are intended to protect Atheist Zone from ignorant or cynical efforts to shut down communication or create a toxic atmosphere.
Rules and Editorial Policy
The following offenses may result in immediate and possibly permanent expulsion from Atheist Zone.
1. Plagiarism. Credit the author or cite the source when you use someone else’s work.
2. Copyright Infringement.
3. Harassment, trolling, threats of violence, stalking, disorderly behavior, or revealing the personal information of another member. This may include obfuscation, ‘word salad‘ posts, repetitious ‘yes but why’ responses, and reissuing previously answered questions or discredited claims. Atheist Zone is aware that unethical critics and the intellectually dishonest have the advantage in that it’s easier to generate nonsense and ignorance than for the reasonable and knowledgeable to demonstrate it as such. Atheist Zone will eject these chronic mess-makers rather than clean up every mess they make.
4. Personal attacks. Name-calling or abuse directed at a person or group of people is disallowed. “You are stupid” is abuse. “Your argument is stupid” is not abuse.
5. Hate speech. Hate speech is a communication which is meaningless except as an expression of denigration for a group of people. “Muslims are turds” is hate speech. “Islam is stupid” is not hate speech. “Atheists are irrational” is overt hate speech. “No offense but in my opinion you atheists are the anti-vaccine conspiracy theorists of the philosophical world” is subtle hate speech, since an untrue analogy (that atheists disregard scientific evidence) declares that atheists are irrational. “Atheists are moral degenerates” is hate speech. Hate speech against atheists which is posted in a community of atheists is more egregious than hate speech against religious which is posted in a community of atheists.
6. Defamation. You may say anything you like, no matter how offensive or unflattering, provided you demonstrate the charge is reasonably true. A more serious charge requires more and better support. If you announce that Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens and Stephen Fry are a bunch of racist pigs, you must have a proportional amount of evidence to back your claim.
7. Proselytizing or other proclamations of mystical or religious truth. Theists, you may visit and post on Atheist Zone provided that you refrain from preaching your particular gospel. You are welcome to ask questions or join in general discussion. You are not welcome to assert religious claims without supporting reason, logic and evidence. “Jesus died for our sins” and “eat five grams of magic mushrooms and you’ll understand” violates this policy. So does “evidence” consisting of quotations from a holy book, or citing the magical properties and powers of your deity.
8. Spam or unauthorized advertising. Members are welcome to announce products if they are topical to the Atheist Zone community. A book about atheism is topical. Inexpensive prescription medication is not topical. A website for atheists to buy books about inexpensive prescription medication is not topical. If you are unsure, contact a moderator before you post.
9. Misrepresentation or circumvention. Theists who claim to be atheists to garner support will be suspended. Users with multiple accounts will be suspended. Users who circumvent suspension with new accounts will be banned permanently.
10. Depictions of nudity, sexual activity or pornography. Atheist Zone uses Google Adsense to provide advertisements on its site, in order to support its costs. There are specific rules regarding adult material issued by Adsense. In short, if a post, image, link or topic is able to be considered as “Adult” then Adsense may blacklist our site removing our ability to be self-supporting financially. Any such post will be removed instantly. Besides the threat to our bottom line, the Atheist Zone staff may be legally liable in some jurisdictions for permitting such material depending on the circumstances.
We encourage members to report anyone who engages in the above activities. We will handle the matter quickly and privately. Atheist Zone reserves the right to suspend any member for any reason deemed necessary. If you would like to express a concern, make a complaint, or offer feedback, contact a moderator directly. Please be discrete. The public forums are not the place to confront members or moderators and action may be taken against all offending parties. Atheist Zone will do its best to resolve all matters fairly.