The guidelines for chatting are simple:
- Be normal - Don't bang on your keyboard, don't post your favorite meme over and over again, don't link to random unrelated websites. If another user is being disruptive, politely ask them to stop. If they don't comply after you've asked them several times, let a moderator handle it.
- Be nice - Treat your fellow chatters with respect. Don't tick people off, and don't react to people ticking you off. If you have ticked someone off (intentionally or unintentionally), try to make amends.
- Be appropriate - Try to avoid words, abbreviations, links, etc. that other people would consider offensive. If someone objects to the content you're posting, then stop.
Although those three should be sufficient, there are a few generally accepted rules of etiquette:
- Stay on topic - If there is an active discussion, don't interrupt with a completely unrelated topic, unless it's something that needs immediate attention. For example, during a conversation about an upcoming LEGO theme, it's okay to post "Vandal A is on the loose; is there an admin here who can intervene?", but not "I like potatoes."
- Lowercase - Don't shout in ALL CAPS. Since bold and italic formatting is not yet supported in chat, it's fine to capitalize ONE word or so for emphasis, but shouting is rude and indicates that you aren't keeping your cool.
- Nothing controversial - Steer clear of political or religious topics. They can ignite flame very easily.
- Kickban sparingly (mods) - Chat banning is intended to be a last resort when a user is being disruptive and refuses to stop. Give the offending user several warnings before banning; be polite, but stern.