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  1. onceuponatimewriting
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    onceuponatimewriting New Member

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    I'm a little confused about posting links in your signatures.

    Discussion in 'Support & Feedback' started by onceuponatimewriting, May 10, 2011.

    I've joined recently, and I want to post a link to my tumblog about creative writing in my signature. However, I'm a little confused about whether or not it's against the rules.

    In the Forum Rules, it strictly says that no links are allowed.
    But in the FAQ, under Signatures, it says that up to two links can be put in a signature.
    So is it against the rules?
     
  2. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it's just a blog and not for commercial gain, I'm pretty sure it's okay. If your blog sells a service then you'll probably get the link removed.
     
  3. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Yup. As long as it's just a blog, and not commercial, then it's fine.
     
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  4. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    What counts as commercial? I mean, I have ads on my blog and I do (in theory, if people click on the ads) make money off it. So, technically speaking, it's a commercial venture...but it's my writing only, and I'm not selling anything.
     
  5. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Also note that your signature is allowed no more than two offsite links.
     
  6. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    Ok I missed that rule when I made my signature. So what of my question? Is a blog that can potentially make me money count as a commercial link?
     
  7. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you have to ask...

    Really, if you're that worried, avoid posting the link. But if you're posting it to promote your writing, it seems pretty safe to me. Just don't start advertising things in your posts. I think the rules are kind of clear on that.
     
  8. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    Actually I don't think they are. I posted a thread about another person's blog, which I find amusing, and linked to it. While I can see how it's "advertising" in a sense, I don't see how it's any more "advertising" than writing a similar post about a movie I saw in a movie thread. But, I got a warning or strike against me for "spamming". I mean, if I talked about it without linking to it, no one would know what I'm talking about, and this forum seems to allow for talking about media we enjoy...
    So no, the rules aren't clear. Sorry. I mean, maybe I'm missing something but I didn't see that we aren't allowed to link to someone else's writing that we enjoy, because to me, advertising means "trying to get people to buy something" not "trying to discuss something you read while maybe trying to get others to read the same free feature on a blog".
     
  9. wolfi
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    wolfi Contributing Member

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    I have to agree the rules are not that clear its never a good idea to assume evrey one knows, Tom may get it but Bob may not, whats counted as a Spam?
    Blogs are not? what if one time about 8 months ago you posted one thing advertizing something? is that part enough for a warning of "spaming? is there a certin dead line form where it counts?
    I don't post links cause I don't get the rules

    Some pepole think Spam is when you post a link to something that you want others to see not just making money
    there is no general definition for Spam anymore and i think we need to sate what we consider Spam clearly. after all someplaces spam is just links to buy things other places its posting the link more then once (even if no cash is involed) another one is asking the same question in another thread to many possbile "spam"
    It's like cuss words, some places cescon Crap, should someone get an ifraction cause to them its not a bad word?
    You may think its wriiting out clearly but fomr this there is at least two pepole who are not quite sure, and where there are two there are more
     
  10. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Honestly, what's so terrible about someone's signature having a link to where, let's say, someone could buy his/her book if it's published? I can understand that posting threads specifically to promote stuff is just annoying and clogs the boards (like all the viagra thraeds in General Writing, there were three of them this morning). But if someone's book is published on Amazon or something and their sig has a link that allows people to go check it out, is that actually forbidden? That seems a little over the top to me, as a personal opinion. It's not like you're sending everyone visitor messages trying to push them to buy your stuff...
     
  11. The Degenerate
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    The Degenerate Active Member

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    Seems like this rule should be changed. Linking to one's books or blogs in their signature shouldn't be constituted as spam if they are on a writing forum.
     
  12. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    I agree.

    Besides, if one of my friends on here got published, I'd want to buy the book. With a link in the author's sig, interested readers can check it out and decide if they want to buy it. With a "for-profit is evil" based ban, people who would actually want to buy and read the book wouldn't even have the info/choice. Like I said, it's not like you're creating separate threads or sending people annoying requests.
     
  13. The Degenerate
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    The Degenerate Active Member

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    Not to mention, authors today need to take a bulk of the marketing on themselves, arranging book signings, garnering attention to their work, etc..

    Whether we want to admit it or not, as writers, we are still peddling products. If we take the notion that any advertisement of our work is wrong, we need to question why we're doing all of this in the first place.
     
  14. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    See, that's why I asked what I did. Anyone with an adsense enabled blog like mine makes money (however little) just by getting visitors, assuming that someone clicks an ad. I don't know the formula, but my profit goes up as I get more visitors, and I know that the view count is formulated against the ad click count. So, if no one ever clicks an ad on my blog, I make no money even if I have a reader count in the millions, but if I have a small audience and a few people clicking ads, I make money. So, by even having the link there, I am potentially making a profit, at no cost to anyone visiting from these forums.
    I mean, I guess that the fact that a mod edited out a link I had there but kept the blog link should be an answer, but I'd like something more explicit.
     
  15. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    Here are another couple of questions about this linking rule:

    1: what if we're doing a charity drive? Can we make a thread about that, or is that an infraction?

    2: I discovered a poetry contest a while ago (maybe 2 weeks ago) that ends in August and offers real prizes (free magazine and publication for the top 10, additional cash prizes for the top 3). If I link to that in the publishers forum, is that an infraction?
     
  16. Reggie
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    Reggie I Like 'Em hot "N Spicy Contributor

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    I think we are not allowed to post two links of an external website. On the other hand, we can post two Writingforums.Org linkes (if you know what I'm talking about). Cogito probably explained it better.

    I typically don't know any websites like this one that allow us to even post links period.
     
  17. The Degenerate
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    The Degenerate Active Member

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    Absolute Write is full of links to authors' books.
     
  18. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    This rule will NOT be changed. It exists to vegin with because of large numbers of joiners hawking their new book but never actually participating on the site.

    We cut a bit of slack from time to time for long standing members to announce, once, that they have published. Nevertheless, the purpose of this site is NOT commerce. Here you will hopefully learn to improve your writing and learn how to break into the publishing world.

    But this won't be a sales outlet.
     
  19. benfromcanada
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    benfromcanada Member

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    Can you maybe answer these questions? both are of course under the assumption that the poster is a contributing member, even if not one that's been here for years

     
  20. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Neither of those cases are permitted.
     
  21. Daniel
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    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

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    If it's a personal website, such as a blog, it's permissible. Generally Tumblr/Blogspot and free blog networks are fine.

    As far as what constitutes commerce, it's really decided on a case by case basis, to be honest. If there's Adsense there that doesn't mean you're link will be removed. However, if it appears that the primary purpose of the blog is to monetize - namely on creative writing - that's considered advertising, in this context. If the intent behind the link in your signature is to draw visitors to your site for you to make money, it's not allowed. This is especially true of people selling writing related products, self-publishing, ezines, contests, and writing software.

    Established members do get a bit more leeway because it's obvious their intent isn't to monetize off of this site's traffic, whereas a new users with a link in his signature is - 9 times out of 10 - trying to promote something and that is his sole motivator for joining writingforums.org.

    If you're unsure if your link's acceptable, PM a moderator or myself and ask. ;)
     
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