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Registration Agreement

Please read the forum registration agreement below then click the 'I accept the terms of the agreement' button at the bottom of the page to proceed. Thank you.

The Bhutan News Service (BNS) Forum was created in early 2022 to enable members of the global Bhutanese community to engage in open debate about the issues that impact their lives.

BNS has no political agenda. It is not connected to any political parties. It has no funders. BNS is totally independent of all outside pressures. It has no political aspirations.

The BNS Forum is managed by a team of volunteers whose sole aim is to provide a meeting place for a diverse range of views, and to manage contributions according to an agreed set of editorial guidelines in order to ensure ethically sound debate of the highest level.

Everyone who signs up as a member of the BNS Forum agrees to abide by these guidelines. A small team of BNS Forum volunteer moderators monitor contributions to ensure they do.

The guidelines for the BNS Forum cover issues such as privacy, taste & decency, libel and defamation, commercial promotion, and offence.

Any posts that breach the guidelines will either be removed or the contributor will be contacted and invited to edit their post.

Any forum member can 'report' a post if they feel it breaks the agreed guidelines. The moderators will be notified automatically.

The volunteer moderators, administrators and the BNS editorial team have a private area of the BNS Forum where they discuss posts that contravene the guidelines and try to reach consensus about what actions to take.

Registered members of the BNS Forum who continue to breach the guidelines might be barred from posting for a specified time or their account could be terminated.

The editorial team of the BNS has the final decision.

The BNS Forum is free to join, and once approved, a new member can be posting in minutes.

Please be sure you read the following guidelines which are part of the BNS Forum agreement before signing up for your free membership. It is important you understand the rules that underpin the integrity of the BNS Forum before continuing.

BNS Forum Agreement

You agree, through your use of the Bhutan News Service (BNS) Forum, that you will not post any material which is false, defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, vulgar, hateful, harassing, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, invasive of a person's privacy, discriminatory against any social or racial group, or in violation of any law.

Disputes

This is not the place for the airing of personal vendettas with neighbours, the naming of neighbours you may have an ongoing disagreement with or the identification of those neighbours by inference. Legal actions can be taken against you by anyone named or referred to in this way. Similarly, when two forum members get involved in an argument in the public discussion forum on a side issue to a current debate we recommend they take that discussion out of the public forum and continue via the forum's private messaging system.

Copyright

You also agree not to post any copyrighted material unless the copyright is owned by you or you have consent from the owner of the copyrighted material. Spam, flooding, advertisements, chain letters, pyramid schemes, personal business dealings, commercial promotions, and solicitations are also inappropriate to this BNS Forum.
Validity of information.

The BNS is unable to confirm the validity of posts on this forum. Messages are not monitored before they are posted, and the BNS is not responsible for the content of the messages. The site is not able to confirm the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any information presented. The messages posted express the views of the author, not necessarily the views of the BNS Forum.

Reviews of community services

The BNS Forum does not allow restaurant reviews or reviews about community businesses or services. This is to prevent people using this community discussion forum for promoting their own businesses or criticising the businesses of others. Instead, we suggest people take up any issues with the companies involved directly and outside of the public discussion area.

However, every now and then someone posts asking if anyone knows a good plumber/decorator/electrician etc. In those cases, we suggest that people use the personal message system to pass on recommendations rather than reply in the public forum. (The personal message system becomes active after forum members have posted five times).

We discourage posts about developments at community shops such as a new owner or refurbishments for the same reasons. However, people are allowed to discuss the impact of a community business, such as the behaviour of people visiting and leaving a restaurant (but not criticise or recommend the services provided by the restaurant), or the likely impact of building development plans on shoppers (but not criticise or recommend the services provided by the builder/developer or use the post to promote the shop), because those are community issues that are in the public interest and which affect the lives of people living nearby.

Objectionable posts

Anyone who feels that a posted message is objectionable can click on the 'report to moderator' link at the bottom right of the offending post. It is important those reporting posts add a comment explaining what it is they find offensive. A report will then be generated and sent to the moderators to consider. The BNS Forum has the right to remove objectionable content, within a reasonable time frame, if it is thought that removal is necessary. This is a manual process however, so please realise that we may not be able to remove or edit particular messages immediately. This policy goes for member profile information as well.

Responsibility of posters

You remain solely responsible for the content of your posted messages. Furthermore, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless the owners of the BNS Forum, any related websites to the BNS Forum, its staff, and its subsidiaries.

The owners of the BNS Forum also reserve the right to reveal your identity (or any other related information collected on this service) in the event of a formal complaint or legal action arising from any situation caused by your use of the BNS Forum.

You have the ability, as you register, to choose a username. As you register you will be invited to set a personal password. You should keep this private for your protection and for validity reasons. You also agree to never use another member's account to post messages to this forum.

After you register and log in to the BNS Forum, you can fill out a detailed profile. It is your responsibility to present clean and accurate information. Any information we deem inaccurate or vulgar will be removed.

Privacy

Each time you post, your IP address is recorded so that if you need to be banned from the BNS Forum your ISP can be contacted. This will only happen in the event of a major violation of this agreement.

At times we might notify the forum membership about updated information about the site. If you don't want to receive these updates. You can opt out of updates in your profile settings.

Also note that the software places a cookie, a text file containing bits of information (such as your username and password), in your browser's cache. This is ONLY used to keep you logged in/out. The software does not collect or send any other form of information to your computer.

Privacy also extends to the private message system. This system is to be used for personal communications between forum members. It is not public information, and, as such, should not be shared in the public forum unless all parties involved in the messages give their consent.

Personal messages between a forum member and a moderator about edits made or the running of the forum will be shared in the private BNS moderators forum section where the administrators and moderators of the forum discuss all editorial issues to ensure that there is full transparency regarding how the forum is managed.

Commercial and political promotions

Posting about events that are for commercial or political gain are not permitted. These include charity events where a commercial company or a political party make direct financial gain as opposed to sponsorship of community events. Promoting a political party and pushing its agenda is also not allowed in this forum.

Spamming, trolling and flaming

The BNS Forum will not tolerate spamming, trolling, and flaming, either in the public forum or via the private message system. All three are explained below.

Spamming is repeatedly posting the same link, or message on multiple boards, or trying to get people to go to another site to buy something. It's okay to post the same content on more than one of our community discussion boards.
Trolling is going onto a board for the sole purpose of starting trouble or instigating an argument.
Flaming is going onto a board and insulting people because of their beliefs, sexual preference, gender, ethnicity or any number of things.

The BNS Forum will not tolerate the harassment of forum members, either through posts that appear to be trolling or flaming as explained above, or via email or personal messages. If you are being troubled by another forum member you can block that forum member in your profile settings and/or report the incident to the editor of the BNS Forum by using the BNS contact form. Anyone found to be abusing the contacts made through this forum, in public or in private, could be banned from the BNS Forum.

In cases where a forum discussion is in danger of being taken off topic by members the topic could be split with another topic started. In the case where it is felt two members are taking over and distracting the original posting and taking it off topic, those members will be contacted and asked to take their discussion off-line (via the private message system). If members continue to disrupt the original topic with what is seen to be inappropriate banter, they may be considered to be trolling and will be contacted by moderators and given a warning.

Linking

Posting links on the BNS Forum is fine if the link is to a site that provides information that helps answer another member's question or is just of general interest to members of that particular forum; The BNS Forum supports this type of exchange. The only type of linking not allowed is when members invite other forum members to leave the BNS Forum in order to continue the discussion on another forum. The aim of this forum is to have a healthy debate on community issues and it makes no sense to transfer that discussion elsewhere.

When posting a link, please add context and explain why it is worth clicking. A post containing a link with no context is not helpful.

Bumping

Bumping is not allowed. Bumping is where people post an upwards arrow or the word 'bump' in order to push threads to the top of the list. If you have a genuine comment to add, please do so, but bumping for the sake of it is not allowed.

Cookies

The BNS Forum downloads a number of cookies (small data files) to your computer when you visit. The ones we serve are designed to enhance your experience using the site. Others are downloaded for advertising purposes. Please make sure you read our cookie policy and ensure you are happy with us downloading cookies - or have taken necessary action to block cookies - before proceeding.

The reason for rules

These rules exist for the protection of all. We are a tolerant forum, and the moderators will always give posters the benefit of the doubt, but if someone breaks the forum rules repeatedly we may be forced to suspend or even cancel their forum membership. This decision will not be taken lightly - the forum moderators discuss all incidents and try to reach consensus. However, those who abuse the rules and ignore this agreement, which they have entered into on registration, should not be able to spoil this facility for others.
Thank you for agreeing to these terms and joining The BNS Forum. We hope you enjoy being part of The BNS Forum community.

Updating this agreement

The BNS Forum's editorial team reserves the right to amend this forum agreement and will always post to the forum when doing so to ensure that all existing forum members are aware of any changes.

Last updated 5 May 2022

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