Open Fire is a private political discussion group and has no partisan agenda. Our mission is to offer an open forum for intelligent debate on news and politics in a collegial and respectful environment. The goal is to to debate with honor, not debase with insults. All we ask is that you try to keep it relatively civil and intelligent, and abide by the guidelines set forth below:
1) CIVILITY. We allow for spirited debate and disagreement, and even strongly colorful language, so long as it is done with civility. Humor, sarcasm and snark are also appropriate forms of expression. However, we ask that you abide by these parameters:
Vulgar direct insults, harassment, threats, and posts that are extremely nasty or demeaning are strongly discouraged. In short, don't be a jerk.
If you feel you cannot tolerate the way someone is addressing you, TAG a moderator or two and we will deal with it. Do not descend to the other person's level of rudeness.
2) CURSING. We realize that emotions get high and an occasional curse word will slip out. You can get away with some of the milder profanity (up to the occasional F bomb), but try to avoid hardcore curse words (like calling someone the C word or "f**ktard"). If your language gets too salty you may be removed from the group without warning.
3) INSULTS. Calling members "stupid," "an idiot" or "retard," or questioning someone's intellect or integrity, is strongly discouraged. Labels like "libtard", "Repugnicans," "Tea Bagger" or any derogatory ad hominem for a group will be deleted. Also, changing real names into disrespectful nicknames for public figures ("Nobama", "Drumpf", "Killary", "Chump", etc.) will be removed. Distasteful content of any kind may be removed at the moderators' prerogative, and the member who posted it may be removed without warning.
4) MEMES. Amusing memes and photos can be a nice break from serious discussions. However, don't debate solely with memes. Use your grown-up words. Memes that contain disputed facts (statistics, factual claims) should be supported with a link to a news source that documents those facts, or they may be removed. Do not post memes that are sexually explicit or distasteful. Photoshopped photos of the First Family and previous First Families that are derogatory in nature will be deleted. Memes will be judged by the admin staff on a case-by-case basis.
5) APPROPRIATE & ACCURATE CONTENT. We do not censor content for political viewpoints; however, we will remove blatantly false facts or unsubstantiated allegations from disreputable sources. We will also remove what we deem to be racist, sexist, or mean-spirited posts, which will not be tolerated under the guise of "free speech." The moderators will make these highly subjective calls to the best of our abilities, and our decisions on such matters are final. Do not use the "Report" feature to report members or their content to Facebook. Instead, Tag a moderator and point out the specific post that bothers you and why.
WE EXPECT MEMBERS TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ACCURACY AND TRUTHFULNESS OF THEIR POSTS. If you post something that is subsequently proven to be blatantly false and a moderator asks you to clarify the point, please do so without argument.
6) TROLLING and SPAMMING is not allowed. Do not advertise for other Facebook groups or products of any kind. You may only promote a personal project/article/blog/vlog in Open Fire with the prior permission of the Admins. Posts that we believe are meant to annoy, insult or incite the ire of members with opposing views may be removed. That said, trolling is a specific disruptive behavior and generally isn't descriptive of long-term members. Please refrain from calling other members "trolls" as that can be an unfair label.
7) REQUESTS TO JOIN. Membership in Open Fire is "at will" and can be terminated at any time for any reason. Requests to join our group are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. We do not reject requests to join based on any political affiliation. Supporters of all reasonable political ideologies, parties and candidates are welcomed in our group. That said, this is a private group and we only want members who demonstrate knowledge and sophistication about American politics. We do our best to weed out trolls, zealots, scammers, phony profiles, and abusive personalities, or if we have a concern that the person poses an online security risk to our members. Members may only have one profile in Open Fire. Membership is at your own risk. The group and its administrators are not responsible for problems or disputes that grow out of member interactions.
8) PRIVACY. Please respect the privacy of our members and do not repost or share their comments in our group to any other Facebook page or other media or broadcast platform without first asking that person's permission. If you want to repurpose our content to another FB page, site, news article, podcast, or broadcast, please ask the permission of our Admin Team first. Similarly, taking our disagreements outside the group to another Facebook page is prohibited. Do not insult or slander another Open Fire member anywhere on Facebook or other media. Do not copy and repost info from another person's FB profile or use their personal info against them. This is called "doxxing" and is prohibited.
9) RESPECT THE MODERATORS. Blocking a group moderator is prohibited. (See the list of current moderators below.) Group discussions are supposed to be about news and politics, not about how this group is administered. Once a moderator has made a decision to remove or allow content, or asks you to edit something in a post, please do not argue our call. If you have an issue with one of our decisions, discuss it with us in a Private Message ("PM"), not in an open thread. We also ask that you don't use the "Reply" feature to create long sub-threads, as it makes the job of moderating our threads infinitely more difficult and time consuming. Replying with a one-off comment or joke is fine, but if a Reply thread starts to go longer than 2-3 comments, please move the discussion back to the main thread.,/p>
10) MEMBERS ARE GUESTS. This group was formed for everyone's enjoyment - including the moderators. A reasonable amount of courtesy and etiquette should be shown to every member and moderator. This is our online home; you are our guests. So please behave with the same decorum you would as a guest in our home. Good-natured joking, sarcasm, and sharp debate are encouraged, but hostile personal attacks on members, administrators or moderators will get you booted.
These guidelines are interpreted and applied by the moderators on a case-by-case basis with the intent to be consistent and fair across all situations. Membership in Open Fire is "at will" and members may be removed at any time based on our interpretation of these Guidelines. While this is a debate group, we strive for a friendly, collegial and pleasant atmosphere and will not hesitate to remove members whom we feel are incompatible with that spirit.
Administrators: Kevin Kelton, Paul Block, Wally Gold, Douglas Braselton, Jeff Penn
Moderators: Ernest Banks, John Bradley, Murdock Brookins, John M. Frick, Wendy Hixson-Young, Kathleen Huddleston, Jason Komendat, Jeff Krohn, Auston McNeill, Cheryl Perry, Marc Siegal, Jacqueline Watson, Rebecca Wilde