Insomnia | Posting Guidelines

"To fight against stupidity in the long run makes even the fairest and gentlest men brutal. Perhaps this means they are on the right path to their own self-defence, for the just argument against a stupid head is a clenched fist. But because, as aforesaid, they are gentle and fair of character, the suffering they inflict on others through this means of defence is less than the suffering they inflict on themselves."

Friedrich Nietzsche


Welcome to Insomnia. This page contains posting guidelines for those who wish to post in the forum. Whoever does not wish to post in the forum (and most readers will doubtless, and with good reason, fall in this category) is not obliged to read this page. Those who are planning to post, on the other hand, would do well to read this entire page extremely carefully, otherwise their chances of not being banned are guaranteed to be practically zero.


1

Do not even THINK of posting in the forum without having at the very least read all my currently online Videogame Culture essays. Once both volumes of my first book have been published, they will also be required reading. Moreover, everything linked off this page is, again, required reading.


2

Please note that threads in this forum are being constantly edited by me, in order to keep them free of stupid/boring bullshit, which for me and for this site's readers might be tiresome/annoying to read. So if you see your posts edited/deleted, don't worry: it's normal. I do this all the time. You just carry on what you are doing, which should be making intelligent, informative, well-written posts on subjects which you know a lot about.

The general idea, which I have explained at length in this article, is that this is NOT a regular videogame forum -- it is a community blog written by experts, and edited by me. By posting here you are effectively becoming a member of this community blog, and accepting me as your editor.


3

If your posts are getting deleted, it means that you need to think more before you post. So please do so! If the ratio of deleted to acceptable posts for a particular user becomes too high (i.e. if you waste too much of my time cleaning up your bullshit), please note that I will be forced to ban you.


4

Please capitalize your sentences, separate them appropriately into paragraphs, and use proper punctuation. Sloppy writing is just hard to read and reflects badly on myself and the site. So please do your best to make each and every post as legible as possible. The exception is one-liner joke posts, in which obviously anything goes. But when you are posting seriously (which should be most of the time) you must take as much care with each paragraph as the people who write the articles and reviews on this website. It's nothing more than common courtesy. If we take the time to go through every review and article a hundred times to make sure everything is perfectly well-written, we expect -- and in fact demand -- our readers to spend an extra minute or two to do likewise with their replies.


5

Please do not overdo it with the smilies and the "in my opinion"s. Smilies look dumb and yes, we already know that everything you type which is not in quotation marks is your goddamn opinion. If you are not secure enough about your opinion to post it without adding "in my opinion", then you're better off not posting it in the first place. Ask a question instead.


6

Do not, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, quote people if you are posting right under them, except if they posted a whole shitload of stuff and you want to comment on one particular point. In that case, QUOTE ONLY THAT POINT. I have edited people's posts so many times that I am pretty sure I've had about enough by now -- from now on I'll simply start banning people. So please: DO NOT DUMP IN THIS FUCKING FORUM.


7

The above quoting policies apply to quotations of posts made IN THIS FORUM. In such cases the rule is: quote as little as possible.

When the quoted material is hosted on ANOTHER SITE, however, the rule is reversed. It then becomes: quote as much as possible.

The reason for this is simple. Websites, as I have noted elsewhere, are often extremely ephemeral entities, so it makes sense to copy-paste into your post everything that is necessary for your post to keep making sense -- even after the site linked to has gone offline for good. Oftentimes it is a good idea to simply copy-paste entire articles into the forum, as I have done on a number of occasions, and will no doubt keep doing.

Do not worry about copyright laws. As long as you provide a link to the original page, no one will worry about copyright on the internet, and especially for stuff copy-pasted into forums.

The above applies mostly for USEFUL information. I.e. for posts/articles/etc. which one might want to save because one deems that they are worth something. For stuff we link in the lol thread, on the other hand, it's not so important. We don't need to have entire shitty articles copy-pasted in here in order to make fun of them, nor will anyone shed a tear if they disappear off the internet and our resulting lol pages make a little bit less sense afterwards.

So basically, as always, use your judgement.


8

Another major stupidity many people in forums seem to commit is this:

They post something that doesn't make sense, or perhaps they make a typo of some sort, then someone replies pointing it out, and then they go back and edit the original post, so that the other person's reply no longer makes any sense.

If you notice a typo or a mistake in one of your posts by all means correct it -- BUT NOT IF SOMEONE HAS ALREADY POINTED IT OUT FOR FUCK'S SAKES. Bottom line is that I want the threads in this forum to make 100% sense, and whoever tries to mess them up, for whatever reason, will simply be banned. So whenever you feel like editing one of your posts, THINK: is this edit going to fuck up the sense of this thread? If the answer is yes, DO NOT FUCKING MAKE THE EDIT.


9

Max avatar dimensions: 120x120
Max signature dimensions: 400x75 or a single line of text

Please size accordingly, and note that no animation is allowed in either avatars or signatures.


10

Contributing to the news sub-forum is encouraged -- as I've already explained in great detail -- of course we appreciate it when people try to point us toward cool new games and game-related stuff. But if you post, try to DO A GOOD JOB OF IT. This means, among other things, including links and relevant images, as well as mentioning your sources where appropriate.


11

Please note that each game can only ever have a single thread in this forum. So before you start a new thread please use the search function (it's powered by Google and works amazingly well, in contrast to those of other forums) to make sure you are not starting a duplicate one. If you do end up starting a duplicate one it's no big deal -- I'll simply delete your thread and direct you to the existing one. But try and do your homework first so as to save me the time and trouble.

12

If I have something to say about a game or a series, I will say it of my own accord, either in a review or a forum post. This means that I do not appreciate people registering to this forum and posting in threads asking me to tell them what I think about specific games or series. (The exception is friends of mine who I've known for a long time and who can ask me whatever the hell they want, whenever they want.)

You have to understand my position here. More and more people are signing up to this forum every week. If ten of them decide to ask me one question each in a single day, I wouldn't be able to do anything else all day.

So. When you post you should VOLUNTEER information -- just like I do. Asking questions is okay too, but only in specific threads (discussions, for example) at specific times. I.e. it's NOT okay to bump a thread asking "Has anyone played this?" -- if someone HAS played it, and if they feel like posting about it, they will do so of their own accord. On the other hand, if we've reviewed a game, you can of course ask whatever question you want -- at that point that's mainly what the thread is for: for people to ask questions (and of course to volunteer opinions/additional information, etc.).

So. Use common sense. Above all be helpful to others and don't expect me or anyone else to hand you everything on a silver platter, every time you decide to ring your little bell. If you ring your little bell YOU WILL SIMPLY BE BANNED.


13

Please do not PM me, like, ever. I fucking hate PMs. You have to log in, send the reply, then you get an email notifying you of the reply, and then you have to delete the notification email, and then delete your responses to save space in your inbox, and then aaaaaarrghhhh!

So if you have something VERY IMPORTANT that you need to privately communicate to me just send me a fucking email (alex@insomnia.ac).

Note that this VERY IMPORTANT issue must be relevant to the running of this website. I.e. it must be very important to me. If it is something simply very important to you (a random game-related question, for example), then you better be prepared to send at least $500-$600 per question. That's my going rate these days.

Alternatively, if you can't afford that much, you can just wait until your question is answered in an article/review on the frontpage. Remember: patience is a virtue of the poor.


14

PROTIP: The [url][/url] tags are NOT NECESSARY if you are just copy-pasting a plain url, like so:

http://insomnia.ac/

So don't use them! They are only necessary if you want to turn some of your words into a link, like so:

Insomnia | Videogame Culture


15

I had originally posted this in a forum thread, during a particularly nasty exchange between two users of this forum, and I figured I might as well throw it up here for the benefit of newcomers:

Newsflash: The point of discussion

Because of some recent goings-on in another thread, between two respected members of this forum, I feel the need to make a quick note about this.

People. The point of discussion is not to CONVINCE the other participants that their opinions are wrong, but for the participants to exchange opinions. As long as you have stated your opinion as clearly as you can, and as politely as you can, you have succeeded. Whether the other person changes or modifies their opinion afterwards is their own business.

Moreover, discussions can only take place between people who respect each other (which is why I immediately ban whoever I don't respect or whoever has lost my respect). So if you don't respect the other participants, DO NOT ENTER INTO DISCUSSION WITH THEM. I don't care how you are going to accomplish this -- the bottom line is that the only person with a license to be rude in here is me. And I am usually only rude to people right before I ban them.

So, discussion presupposes:

1. Respect
2. Mere exchange of opinions

Next up: How to brush your teeth. Stay tuned!


16

A bit more on the whole rudeness issue.

Think of this forum as my home, and the people who frequent it as guests in a never-ending party. The idea is that, since everyone here is my guest, people are not allowed to hurl insults at each other, and when they do, what they are in fact doing, beyond and above all else, is disrespecting me, personally.

Do you understand? The first person you insult when you insult someone in here is me, because each individual here is my personal, and personally selected guest.

So the only one here with a license to be rude is me, and I usually only do that to people just before banning them -- which is only logical, if you think about it. If you were about to kick someone out of your house, either because they did something you find unacceptable, or because they've just turned out to be plain annoying idiots, you'd probably also hurl some rude remarks their way while doing it. Well, at least you would if your temperament was anything like mine...

If all this seems weird to you, trust me, it isn't. It is exactly how the world works, and how it should work. If you don't believe me, try going to a big party, preferably one hosted by a complete and total stranger, and be rude to one of his guests and see what happens.


17

This should be pretty clear without explanation, but it's worth making it explicit. Threads for games that are under development go in the news sub-forum. Threads for games that are already out go in the games sub-forum. When a game is released, if it already has a thread in the news subforum, it will be moved to the games subforum (or at any rate it will be moved there at SOME point when I get around to moving it...)

There's one exception to all the above, and this is ports and remakes. If a game is getting ported or if it's receiving a remake, its thread will NOT be placed in the news sub-forum. Ports and remakes basically do not count as new games, and in fact do not warrant new threads either -- they are discussed in the same thread with the original version.

One more thing. Threads on specific games should also include all news/links/discussion on each game's incremental updates. Of course clearly defining "incremental" updates as opposed to major updates (which get new threads) is not possible, so you should exercise judgement. The Suggoi! version of Arcana Heart 2, for example, does not deserve a new thread, whilst Biohazard 5 does.


18

I get lots of stupid messages from deadbeats who don't "entirely agree with everything" I've ever written, but who of course do not bother mentioning which things those are and why they don't agree with them. So let's make this explicit:

Whoever posts in this forum that they don't "entirely agree" with something one of us has written, without pointing what those things are and giving EXTREMELY DETAILED REASONS, will be immediately permabanned with no appeal. I don't care if it's your first post or the 20,000th -- there are only two ways of responding to this website's articles without getting banned:

1. "Awesome stuff, I agree with everything! Keep up the good work!"

or

2. "I did not agree with this, this and that point, for this, this and that reason."

Of course it goes without saying that if your reasons are retarded you'll still probably be banned, if not immediately then certainly at some point down the line.


19

Many people who have read these guidelines seem to be assuming that I automatically ban users whose native language is not English. That is nonsense, first and foremost because MY OWN native language is not English (it is Greek -- English is the second out of four languages I speak). Moreover, many people who have contributed to this site, either on the frontpage or in the forums, are not native English speakers either -- so there goes that little theory.

So, non-native English speakers are welcome, and have always been so. What I am asking from them is that:

1. They somehow make it known to us, preferably by posting in the introduction thread, or otherwise by mentioning it in their first post, that their native language is not English. In this way they help us avoid confusing them for trailer trash Americans or lager lout Brits who never went to school.

2. They make an effort every time they post to write in the best English that they can.

3. They use correct paragraph separation and punctuation like everyone else. Just because you may be Italian or German does not mean you are excused from using commas or periods -- commas and periods exist in Italy and Germany too (I know because I've been there). Slight differences do exist between languages, in terms of punctuation, but they are just that -- slight, mostly to do with stuff like semi-colons which no one really uses anyway.

4. All bets are off if you are Japanese or Chinese or Korean or from Mars. In that case you are excused even as regards paragraph separation and punctuation.

Note that all the above holds for all sub-forums EXCEPT the theory one. In the theory sub-forum things are completely different -- above all a great deal more strict. This is because some of the discussions held there are quite complex, revolving as they do on subtle differences between words and shades of words, or technical or otherwise obscure terminology, where the slightest misunderstanding can lead the discussion to a dead-end or to idiotic absurdities. This is not true of ALL threads in there, but it is true of many of them. So use your judgement. If you can't figure out what the fuck people are talking about in a thread DON'T POST IN IT. Learn English first, or I don't know, try to find a forum in your native language where people are discussing the same issues (and good luck with that -- you are going to need it). I am sorry but this is how the world works. Not everyone can communicate with everyone else, and not everything is understandable by everyone. Welcome to the universe.


20

And finally, a little bit more Nietzsche might perhaps help a few more people understand what is going on in here.

Our air.-- We know very well how science strikes those who merely glance at it in passing, as if they were walking by, as women do and unfortunately also many artists: the severity of its service, its inexorability in small as in great matters, and the speed of weighing and judging matters and passing judgement makes them feel dizzy and afraid. Above all they are terrified to see how the most difficult is demanded and the best is done without praise and decorations. Indeed, what one hears is, as among soldiers, mostly reproaches and harsh rebukes; for doing things well is considered the rule, and failure is the exception; but the rule always tends to keep quiet. This "severity of science" has the same effect as the forms and good manners of the best society: it is frightening for the uninitiated. But those who are used to it would never wish to live anywhere else than in this bright, transparent, vigorous, electrified air -- in this virile air. Anywhere else things are not clean and airy enough for them; they suspect that elsewhere their best art would not really profit others nor give real delight to themselves; that among misunderstandings half of their lives would slip through their fingers; that they would be required to exercise a great deal of caution, conceal things, be inhibited -- so many ways of losing a lot of strength for no good reason. But in this severe and clear element they have their full strength; here they can fly. Why, then, go down into those muddy waters where one has to swim and wade and get one's wings dirty? -- No, it is too hard for us to live there. Is it our fault that we were born for the air, clean air, we rivals of the beams of light, and that we wish we could ride on ethereal dust specks like these beams -- not away from the sun but toward the sun! That, however, we cannot do. Let us therefore do what alone we can do: bring light to the earth, be "the light of the earth"! And to that end we have our wings and our speed and severity; for this are we virile and even terrible like fire. Let those be terrified by us who do not know how to gain warmth and light from us!

That is all. Once again, I welcome you to this forum, and I hope you end up enjoying posting here as much as I do.

Alex Kierkegaard