Frequently Asked Questions About Community Rules & Guidelines

In order to keep our community guidelines and rules simple, and easy to digest, we've kept them short and to the point. However, we understand that some people want expanded, super detailed information about our rules, and if that's you, you're in the right place.

Below are some of our most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about VB rules, infractions, policy and much more. If you have a question that's not on this list, feel free to contact a mod and we'll add your question.

FAQs about being a vegetarian

FAQs about registration & your account

FAQs about health & safety

FAQs about spam

FAQs about respect - otherwise known as "how to be an awesome VB member"

FAQs about posting here at VB

FAQs about rules in general

FAQs about minor violations

FAQs about major violations

FAQs about VeggieBoards moderation

Image by Flickr User WordRidden

FAQs about being a vegetarian

Do I need to be a vegetarian to join VeggieBoards?

VeggieBoards is a meat-free community for vegetarians and vegans as well as aspiring vegetarians. You are welcome to join our community if one of the three following descriptions applies to you:

  1. You follow a vegetarian diet which means you do not eat meat, including beef, poultry, pork, fish or bi-valves.

  2. You follow a vegan diet which means you do not eat meat or other animal products.

  3. You are transitioning to a meat-free lifestyle, which means your sincere goal is to be vegetarian or vegan and you want support to achieve your goal.

What does "transitioning to a meat-free lifestyle" mean?

Transitioning to a meat-free lifestyle means you want to go vegetarian (or vegan) and you are taking active steps to reach that goal. Active steps may include steps such as cutting back on meat, asking questions about the best ways to quit eating meat, setting a quit date for eating meat and so on. If going vegetarian is your goal, VeggieBoards will offer you support and advice to help you reach your goal.

Example of someone transitioning to meat-free: You have given up most meat but still eat fish. However, you would like to stop eating fish so you join our community in order to get support and advice about the best ways to quit eating fish.

What sort of meat-eaters should NOT join VeggieBoards?

If you are not actively planning to quit eating meat then VeggieBoards is not the best forum for you. This is a forum for vegetarians or vegans OR truly aspiring vegetarians or vegans.

Can VeggieBoards convert me to a vegetarian?

It is not our job to convince you to quit eating meat or to forcefully convert you into a vegetarian. Going vegetarian is a personal decision that you need to make. What VeggieBoards does offer is a meat-free, supportive place where you can come for encouragement, advice and knowledge. Joining VeggieBoards means you have already decided to quit eating meat.

Asking the community to, "Convince you to quit eating meat" is not acceptable. Asking the community to, "Convert you to vegetarian" is not acceptable. Starting debates about the pros of meat eating is not acceptable. Discussions about eating meat that show you have no intention of giving meat up are not acceptable and will result in an immediate ban.

Image by len-k-a via sxc.

FAQs about registration

Can kids and teens join VeggieBoards?

If you are 13 years old or older you may join VeggieBoards. The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) restricts use of sites like VeggieBoards to all youth who are 12 years old or younger. If you are under 13 years of age you may not provide any personal information or use our public discussion areas, and if you do register here at VeggieBoards, it will result in an immediate ban.

If you're under 13 and are interested in going vegetarian or vegan that's awesome! This choice will benefit your life, animal welfare and the planet. We suggest you speak with your parents about your wishes.You may encourage your parents to join VeggieBoards so that they can learn about how they can best support your vegetarian or vegan goals. Also, you are free to read the article below to learn about vegetarian and vegan resources available to youth.

We're sorry that VeggieBoards cannot allow young people to join. We hope you stick with your veggie goals and come back and tell us all about it in our teen forum once you're 13.

Is registration free?

Yes. You may register for a free account here.

Can other members see my information?

  • All VB members can see your profile, along with posts, articles, reviews or images you post, unless they block you.

  • Mods can see the same stuff regular members see, and they can also see any infractions you have received.

  • Regular members cannot see your infractions.

  • No one, including regular members, mods or admins can see any private messages (PMs) you send to other members or receive from other members.

What if VeggieBoards is not working out for me?

We understand VB is not the perfect forum for everyone. If you decide VB is not for you, you're free to leave at anytime and find a more suitable forum. However, please don't leave in a huff or try to create drama before you go.

Can I delete my VeggieBoards account?

Once you post at VeggieBoards, you are giving VeggieBoards the right to edit, publish and distribute the threads which contain your posts. You cannot withdraw or retract your posts or seek payments from us in relation to this license at any time in the future. Should you choose to leave the site, your account, including your posts, will not be deleted. You may edit your own posts as you see fit.

Can I have more than one VB account?

No. If there is a problem with your account or you would like to switch you user name, please contact a moderator.

Are there any site registration and use tutorials?

Yes. Please visit our general FAQ for help with registration, plus tutorials about how to use the site. You can also take a VeggieBoards tour if you like (link coming soon).

Image by Brybs via sxc.

FAQs about health & safety

Can I trust the health information I find at VB?

Though many of our members can offer you useful advice, always remember that VB is not a medical site.

If you have a medical issue that you think may be related to your diet or other issues, you are free to post questions about it, but we do not guarantee that any advice given on VB is based on medical fact vs. opinion. If you're ill or have questions about your health please see your personal health care provider about it.

Please note that the moderators reserve the right to delete posts which promote extreme diets and health remedies which are seen as putting members health and well-being at great risk.

VB is also not an animal health site - if your companion animal is ill or hurt please contact your vet immediately.

How can I stay safe while using VeggieBoards?

  • Do not overly post personal information such as your home address or phone number.

  • Do not share your VeggieBoards password with anyone.

  • Do not post personal information about any other VeggieBoards member.

  • Do not discuss private correspondence publicly (PM's, e-mail, etc) without permission from all parties involved.

What if I don't feel safe?

If anyone is harassing you, or you feel unsafe for any reason when visiting VeggieBoards, please contact a VB mod right away. We can help.

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FAQs about spam

What is spam?

We consider spam to be the following:

  • Advertisements for non-vegetarian products and/or services.

  • Advertisements for vegetarian products and/or services.

  • Affiliate and paid referral links.

  • Requests that ask members to contact you in order to learn more about a product.

  • "Market Research" or surveys of any kind.

  • Donation or charitable requests for yourself or other people or organizations.

  • Posting the same video or links over and over.

What will happen if I post spam?

We have zero tolerance policy for spam. If you post off-topic spam, your post will be deleted and you will be banned from VeggieBoards. If you post on-topic spam, meaning veggie-related spam, you may receive a warning or an infraction. If you continue to post on-topic spam after receiving a warning or infraction, you may be temporarily or permanently banned from VB.

Can I post about causes I support?

Yes! But, try to keep posts like this to a minimum. If you continually post links to online petitions, causes you support and websites you love, it's likely a mod will contact you and ask you to tone it down

I have a great veggie blog - can I promote it?

If you have a veggie minded blog or website you're proud of, feel free to link to it in your signature. We also have a member blog/website area you may post in.

Life's Options by © 2006-2013 Pink Sherbet Photography

FAQs about respect - otherwise known as "how to be an awesome VB member"

How should I treat new members?

Message boards can be intimidating to a new user. When a new member introduces themselves, it's always nice to say hello and to be open to their questions. Please do not discourage new members (or long-term members) from posting.

What does discouraging someone from posting mean?

Behaviors that may discourage someone from posting include....

  • Attacking someone's knowledge. We all have different experiences and different levels of knowledge. Don't attack people for asking questions.

  • Calling someone a troll. Not everyone has Internet savvy. What you assume may be troll behavior, may be someone who simply doesn't have the best Internet etiquette. If you feel a troll has taken up residence, don't call them out. Instead contact a mod and let them know.

  • Attacking someone who asks for help to quit eating meat. Folks who would like to go meat-free should be congratulated and supported for making such a monumental decision. Remember that most of us here at VB ate meat at one point and we all, at one time, took those first steps towards a meat-free lifestyle.

  • Responding to a post by telling the poster to "Go look something up." If you aren't actually going to be helpful and answer someone's question, why respond at all?

  • Trying to convert someone's goals. If an individual is looking for support in going vegetarian, don't tell the person that they're not doing enough and should also quit dairy and eggs if they really want to make a difference.

  • Putting someone down because they're having a hard time reaching their goal. Going vegetarian or vegan is a big step. Some of us do it overnight, some take weeks and some may even take years. Comments like, "Well, I went vegetarian in a week, so you can too" or "Are you serious, it's not hard to quit eating cheese" aren't helpful. Try to find ways to support people without forcing them into your ideals of how they should reach a specific goal.

What builds a negative community?

  • *Promoting other websites or forums that are similar to VeggieBoards.

  • Bringing drama that happens on other forums, websites or social media sites to VeggieBoards.

  • Talking trash about other vegetarian forums or websites in posts.

*NOTE: If you send messages asking people to join other forums, for example, "Hey, come to XXX boards because it's full of awesome vegans, not lame vegans like here at VB" and we get a member complaint about it, you may receive a warning or infraction.

What helps build a positive community?

  • Consider "Liking" someone's post. Reputation points are fun.

  • Treat others how you would like to be treated.

  • Think about what you really want to say before you respond to a post.

  • Be respectful of other members views and their political, religious, philosophical and cultural background.

  • Respect the moderators. They dedicate LOADS of volunteer time in order to keep the forum running smoothly and to help our members.

Image by sqback via sxc.

FAQs about posting here at VB

What are the VeggieBoards posting guidelines?

  • Post new threads in the appropriate area. For example, post vegan questions in the vegan support area and post new vegetarian questions in the transitioning to vegetarian area. If you're not sure where to post read the sticky note at the top of each forum area for clues or ask a mod.

  • Stay on topic. While we understand that sometimes threads naturally go in a new direction, deliberately taking over an original poster's (OP) thread to change the topic is not ok.

  • When starting a new thread, use a descriptive thread title. This will help you get a quicker answer to a question.

  • Use proper spelling/punctuation/grammar (to the best of your ability).

  • If you write a lot, please hit enter once in a while. It's frustrating to try and read a great wall of texts with no breaks.

  • Try to stay away from posting in very light colors, as it can be hard for some members to see.


Where should I post recipes?

We have many areas here at VB in which you can post recipes. See our recipe posting guide to learn more.

Where should I post reviews?

If you have a vegetarian or vegan product you'd like to review, please post in our product review area. For more information read the following articles:

Can I post images here at VeggieBoards?

VeggieBoards has an active Pinterest account and we love to feature member photos. Feel free to post images in threads or articles or in your own gallery, but keep the following rules in mind.

  • Do not post images from other websites without permission, because most are copyrighted.

  • You may post Creative Commons license images or copyright free images.

  • You may post photos you take with your own camera, but we may post it on our Pinterest page, other social media pages, on the front page of the website, in newsletters and within other VB content. If you are not comfortable with that, please do not post your own images here.

Are there any questionable or sensitive topics I should be aware of?

Our community is committed to respect for all animals, including fish and bi-valves. Think hard before starting a debate about fish and or bi-valves. Also, many of our members are sensitive when it comes to the plight of animals, so please issue a warning in the title or near the top of a thread if you post an image or a link to a story about animal cruelty, neglect or harm

What if I want to write a VB article?

VeggieBoards has a content team and there are also ways to get help and advice if you want to add a single article to our article area. For questions about our content team or for advice about how to post an article, please send a message to Jennifer C, or if she's unavailable, another mod.

Image by weblody via sxc.

FAQs about rules in general

What happens when someone breaks a rule at VB?

Our goal here at VeggieBoards, with regards to the rules, is personal responsibility.

Mods would like to see the community work out their own problems and only step in as truly needed. We want to treat people as mature individuals, not make everyone feel as though they're being controlled by mods and the rules. Everyone who joins VB should be aware of this and focus on personal responsibility first, mods getting involved second.

When mods do need to get involved, we use a system of mod majority consensus. We feel that discussions among the mods, such as, "Should I put this person on probation" or "Should this member be banned" will help keep our personal issues in check, because we're all human (even the mods) and as such some mods may difficulties with certain individuals when other mods don't.

What will get me banned from VB immediately?

5 things will get you banned from VB immediately. There will be no discussion, no debates, you'll just be banned. Those 5 things include:

  1. Posting advertising spam.

  2. Registering at VB if you are under 13 years of age.

  3. Posting pro-meat, pro-hunting or pro-animal cruelty posts.

  4. You tell us that you have zero interest in going vegetarian and are going to keep eating meat.

How many infractions can I get before I'm banned?

  • Once your infraction account reaches 3 points it will result in a 7 day ban.

  • Once your infraction account reaches 4 points it will result in a one month ban.

  • Once your infraction account reaches 100 points it will result in a permanent ban.

What does it mean if I'm put on probation?

Being on probation means you can still read threads and post on threads, but your post will not show up on the site until a mod reads and approves your post.

Probation is typically given if you repeatedly break the same rule. For example if you use bad language over and over or post links continually after being asked to stop. You might also get probation for various other reasons though, including, but not limited to, posting seriously questionable content all the time or being rude to others continually.

Probation lengths vary. You may be on probation for a week or a month or for any amount of time that the mods think is necessary. No one is put on probation until the mods have discussed it and come to a majority decision.

FAQs about minor violations

What are minor rule violations?

  • Discouraging other members from posting.

  • Purposefully swaying threads off topic for the purpose of creating controversy.

  • Posting copyright protected material at VB.

  • Self promotion (on-topic spam) without good reason.

  • Creating multiple accounts may be a minor violation - we handle this on a case-by-case basis.

What happens if I break a minor rule?

We follow a three strike rule with regards to minor violations.

  • If the mods feel you break a minor rule we will send you a warning PM, highlighting the rule you broke and ask you not to do it again.

  • If you break the same minor rule again, we will send another warning (up to three warnings total).

  • If you break the same minor rule four or more times you will be issued an infraction for breaking the rule and for subsequent times you break the same rule.

Image by dcandea via sxc.

FAQs about major violations

What are major violations?

  • Rude or disrespectful behavior towards other members: This is a major violation, but because rude and disrespectful behavior can easily be misinterpreted, VB mods have chosen to deal with this specific violation on a case-by-case basis.

  • Posting inappropriate content: You should consider VB a family-friendly site. Meaning, content which you wouldn't be comfortable viewing at work or with family members around, isn't appropriate for VB. Examples of inappropriate content includes, but is not necessarily limited to: pornography, adult, or mature content; lewd or provocative images; links to adult/sexual dating sites; links to escort sites; graphic or gory images such as bloodshed, fight scenes, and gruesome or freak accidents.

  • Posting inappropriate language.

  • Personal attacks or harassment of other VB members: Instances of this may include, but are not limited to the following: Name calling (such as, "stupid, troll, idiot, and so on); threatening another member with physical or emotional harm; stalking; posting someone's private information (address, phone, e-mail and so on); defrauding someone; or advocating any of the above behaviors.

  • Using stigmatizing words or phrases: Any promotion of bigotry or discrimination will not be tolerated. Under this rule you may not advocate violence against any individual, group or organization (protected or unprotected) OR post hate/anti content targeted against any group or individual that may be construed as biased against individuals, groups, or organizations based on criteria such as race, religion, disability, sex, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or political affiliation.

Why can't we swear? Aren't we all adults?

We have specific words we don't allow here because our site is open to youth 13 - 18 and because we also consider our site a safe-for-work site, so extreme bad language is not appropriate.

Our site auto filters and corrects some bad language in order to keep VB from being blocked from universities, schools, work places, and public Internet service providers (libraries, trains, hotels etc). These words are included in the following text document. If you are very sensitive to profanity, please do not open this file.

VBCensoredWords.txt 0k .txt file

However just because we have an auto filter doesn't mean you should use these words. Words on the filter list are not allowed to be posted, but also attempting to bypass the censor by misspelling, inserting spaces or symbols, transposing letters, using look-alike symbols, or any other method is not allowed.

What happens if I use bad language or post inappropriate content?

  • Step 1: If you post inappropriate content, up to three times, a mod will contact you and ask that you self-edit your post within 48 hours in order to fix the situation. If you refuse to self-edit, or fail to do so, without good reason, within 48 hours, a mod will edit your post and you will be issued an infraction.

  • Step 2: If you post inappropriate content four or more times, a mod will edit your post and you will either be given an immediate infraction or you may be placed on temporary probation.

  • Step 3: If you post inappropriate content continually you may: receive more infractions; be put on long-term probation; be banned from VB temporarily or permanently.

NOTE: If you post content or use language that is consider too extreme by the mods, we reserve the right to overrule steps 1-2 (above) and move directly to step 3 (above).

What happens if I'm rude or disrespectful to another member?

Rude or disrespectful behavior including sarcasm, belligerence, mockery, condescension, intellectual dishonesty and misconstruing is handled on a case-by-case basis. This is because not all instances of rudeness warrant moderation and also, rude behavior is not always easy to determine as such. For example, criticizing someone's posts, criticizing someone's behavior or general bickering doesn't necessarily always count as rude.

If a mod sees something that may be considered rude or disrespectful or if an instance of this is reported by a member, here are some things that may happen:

  • A mod may make a post in the thread asking people to try and get along and see if that helps.

  • A mod may place your post in a spoiler box.

  • A mod may message an individual to discuss their behavior.

  • A mod may message you and ask you to self-edit your own post.

  • Mods may lock down a thread that contains rude behavior.

  • Depending on the violation, and number of violations, you may also receive an infraction, be placed on probation or receive a temporary or permanent ban.

What happens if I attack or harass another member?

When a mod sees an instance of attacking or harassment or an incident of this is reported by a member, it's handled on a case-by-case basis.

Clearly if you post someone's personal info or call someone a name, that is unmistakable harassment. However, personal attacks and harassment are difficult to interpret, which is why we handle this case-by-case. For example, an opposing view is not normally a personal attack, though some people take it as such. Along the same lines, just because someone criticizes your post, does not always mean it's a personal attack.

Tone and intent are difficult to interpret online.

If you believe a post is a personal attack or that someone is harassing you, you should report it. The mods will then have a discussion about the situation and come to a consensus about how to handle the situation. If the mods decide that someone has truly attacked or harassed another member, various actions may be taken based on the severity of the violation, including:

  • You may get a warning about your behavior.

  • You may be asked to self-edit your own post.

  • You may receive an infraction.

  • You may be placed on probation.

  • You may receive a temporary or permanent ban.

What happens if I use stigmatizing words or phrases?

If you advocate violence against any individual, group or organization (protected or unprotected) OR post hate/anti content targeted against any group or individual that may be construed as biased against individuals, groups, or organizations based on criteria such as race, religion, disability, sex, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or political affiliation, then the mods will discuss the situation and come to a majority consensus about how to handle the situation.

Depending on the severity of the situation, and depending on if you've done this before, one or more of the following will happen:

  • You may receive an infraction.

  • A mod may edit, delete or place your post in a spoiler box.

  • You may be placed on probation.

  • You may receive a temporary or permanent ban.

FAQs about VeggieBoards moderation

Who are the current moderators at VB?

You can always find our most current mods on the mod contact page. You can also learn more about them on the VeggieBoards staff page (link coming soon)

Do VB moderators have to follow the rules?

Everyone at VB, mods, members and admin must follow the rules outlined in this document. Moderators have additional goals and guidelines at VB as well. You can see the mod guidelines here.

What if I feel I've been unfairly judged by a mod?

In almost all cases, mods attempt to come to a majority consensus decision before giving an infraction, putting someone on probation or banning a member. We do this so that no one feels as if they've been unfairly targeted by a single moderator.

Mods are not required to come to a majority consensus before giving someone a warning. If you feel you have been given a warning, infraction or ban unfairly by a specific mod, feel free to contact another mod to discuss the situation and to make sure that proper mod majority consensus was used.

Can anyone be a mod?

Sometimes we do have openings on the mod team. In most cases we will invite specific individuals to join the mod team or we will post a site announcement in site support to point out that we are looking for new mods. If you see a site announcement about this, feel free to apply.

The fine print

VeggieBoards owners, administrators and moderators reserve the right to modify these terms at any time. Your continued use of this site following the effective date of such changes to these Terms will mean you accept those changes.

These rules are current as of Feb 2014.