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DemConWatch FAQ

by: Oreo

Mon Dec 08, 2008 at 09:51:41 AM EST

DemConWatch (DCW) was started in 2005 to watch the unfolding of the 2008 Democratic Convention site selection process. It has grown to a site dedicated to the conventions, primaries, elections, transition, future races and coverage of elected officials. We are a community of progressive Democrats. We welcome you to be part of this community.

Below are the "rules of the road". This is a living document and will change over time. Anyone is welcome to read our blog, but to comment or write your own posts, you will need to join DCW, by providing a screen name and a verifiable e-mail address. Anonymous comments and posts are not allowed.

Posts (you can also call them diaries, articles, or whatever you want) are just blog entries any registered user is allowed to post. You can also recommend other people's diaries. If a diary receives enough recommendations, it moves into the "Recommended Diaries" list. The front page authors may also promote user diaries directly to the front page.

If at any time you lose your password, it can be recovered by clicking on "forgot your username or password?" in the Menu on the right sidebar.

If you have any questions about signing up, please drop us a note at our e-mail address on the left sidebar.


DCW is a community and, as in any community, there will be people with whom you agree and disagree. We can all manage to get along if we just follow some simple, common sense rules for our discussions. We have no objections to heated discussion or disagreement, and we welcome impassioned discussion, but there are lines that common sense should keep you from crossing:


  1. The first rule is: the more, the merrier. Our discussions and organizing can only be enhanced with more participation. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, and everyone else you know.

  2. Don't be an ass. This should be enough for most folks, but if that's not clear enough, keep reading.

  3. Racism, bigotry, threats of violence and other hate-filled language is strictly prohibited - from those on the right side of the political spectrum and the left.

  4. No personal attacks, ad hominem attacks, nor revealing of private information is tolerated. EVER. This is grounds for immediate banning.

  5. No sock puppets. Posting under multiple blognames is grounds for immediate banning, ridicule, and outing. This is a case where your personal information will be revealed so don't do it. Similarly, if you work for a campaign or otherwise have a conflict of interest please disclose it ahead of time. Ideally put such a disclaimer in your signature line. More on that later. We're going to find out anyway and it's going to look not only bad for you but also your candidate or issue campaign.

  6. Stay on topic. When responding to a post or comment, don't hijack the post with random issues. Respond to the topic being discussed, write your own post, or post it in an open thread.

  7. No comment spam. Advertising an unrelated site by posting a comment is not tolerated. If it's not relevant to the blog, don't link it. This rule is loosely enforced in open thread diaries where the purpose is a collection of odd and random thoughts and discussions.

  8. Using the Hide comment rating is not  for people you disagree with. The ability to hide comments plays an important role in the community to self-moderate, so please use the ratings appropriately.

How to use this site

What is a blog?

A blog is a website in which journal entries are posted on a regular basis and displayed in reverse chronological order. The term blog is a shortened form of weblog or web log. Individual articles are called blog posts, posts, entries, or diaries.

Getting started

Most features on DCW require that you have a user account and be logged in. If you don't already have an account, you can create one by filling in a desired username and a valid address. You will soon receive an email at the address you specified containing a temporary password used to log in. Check your spam folder if you don't get anything in a reasonable amount of time. Return to www.demconwatchblog.com, and enter your username and password.

The password you receive by email will be randomly generated. After logging in, you may want to change your password to something easier to remember. In the Menu on the top right of the page, click on the link for your page. If your username is Bob, the link would appear as Bob's page.

Next, click on the "Profile" link.

Then, click on the "Email/Password" link.

Finally, fill out the form to change your password.

Posts (Referred to in some places on the site as "Diaries")

Once you log in, you can create your own "post" entry. A post is just an entry that anyone can write up and have appear on the website. Any registered user that is logged in can create a post. Once a post is posted, it will appear under "Recent Posts" in the right hand column. Users can read any diary by clicking on its title. Posts can be "recommended" by users by clicking on the "Recommend Post" button within a particular Post.

If enough users recommend a post, it will be promoted to the "Recommended Posts" list, right above the "Recent Posts" list. Any of the front page bloggers may also promote diaries directly so that they are displayed on the front page.

To post a diary, click on the New Post link in the Menu on the top right of the page. Fill in the Title, Main Text, and Extended Text. If your post is more than 3 or 4 paragraphs long, place the rest of the text in the "Extended Entry".

Please do not post entire articles. It is ok to add a paragraph or two and link to the original article.


Tags are a way of classifying diaries which serve as a search tool. Appropriate tags include Site Selection, Senate, Transition, Barack Obama. Tags should be separated by commas. Some tips (heavily borrowed from Dailykos):

  1. Use combinations of simple tags rather than inventing complex ones.

  2. Try to think of what tags people might use to search for something and use those. Remember, tags are like categories. And people don't search for "humor" or "satire". They search for issues, races, locations, and people.

  3. Try to re-use existing tags.

  4. Keep it simple. Avoid tags that are redundant.

  5. Use first and last names for all people. Believe it or not, people sometimes share last names.

  6. Avoid tags that would apply to just about every diary like "politics".


You must be a registered users to post comments. To respond to a post that is on the front page, first click on the "Discuss" or "There's More" button at the end of a diary. Once within a particular diary, you can respond to it by clicking the "Post a Comment" link at the end of the diary. Fill in the Subject and Comment sections of your comment. Click on "Preview" to make sure it's formatted correctly. If it looks acceptable, click "Post", otherwise revise it and click "Preview" again. You can use HTML formatting or WYSIWYG formatting. To reply to another's comment, click the "reply" link at the bottom of that comment. Your reply will be indented relative to comment above it.

If you are unfamiliar with HTML codes, you can stick to WYSIWYG, and just type. You can use the buttons at the bottom of the field to bold, italicize, and place something in quotes.

Creating Your Post

First off, if you can type an email, you can blog. Most of writing a post is simply entering text in a box. But, there are some simple rules. If your post is only going to be a few sentences and a link, that's generally not considered enough content to make a post. If it's still information you feel needs to be out there, try to add more content, analysis, or put it in an open thread. Once you have your post, click on the "Preview" button to see what it will look like. Edit as necessary. Once you've clicked on preview once, you now also have a "Save" button. Clicking on the "Save" button publishes your post to your page, and it will also appear on the "Recent Posts" list on the right side bar.

If you make a mistake once you've posted your piece, there's an "edit" link at the top of the screen. If you want to delete your post, also click edit, then find the "delete" check box at the bottom of the page. After clicking that, a new page will appear asking you to confirm the deletion.

If you would like more information on writing a post, click here.

Fair Use Doctrine:

For both comments and posts, you can cite information from another source (blog, website, etc.) but be aware of the Fair Use Doctrine which protects the copyrights of others. You can generally use a few lines, but do not copy major parts of the piece, nor full articles, as that would be a violation of the law. 

Lawyerly Disclaimer:
Demconwatchblog.com (hereinafter The Blog) is a blog dedicated to the dissemination of progressive political views related to political conventions, primaries, elections, transitions, and elected officials. The views expressed at The Blog represent only the views of the respective authors. The moderators, editors, and owners of The Blog are not responsible for opinions or other statements made by other users of The Blog.

The Blog includes links to other sites operated by third parties. These links are provided as a convenience to you and as an additional avenue of access to the information contained therein. We have not reviewed all of the information on other sites and are not responsible for the content of any other sites or any products or services that may be offered through other sites. The inclusion of these links in no way indicates their endorsement, support or approval of the contents of the third party sites by anybody associated with The Blog.

We have the right to edit, remove or deny access to content that is determined to be, in our sole discretion, unacceptable. Please respect the rights of others to be heard and to be respected. We welcome all viewpoints, but we do not accept personal or ad hominem attacks on our users, in any form. The moderators of The Blog retain the right to ban any user from posting at The Blog for behavior deemed inappropriate.

You grant us the right to display any information or material you send to The Blog. You also agree by posting at The Blog that any material you have posted at The Blog is part of the public domain and does not violate any intellectual property rights.

By accessing The Blog, you agree to respect the privacy of every user and the moderators.

The work of each author or blogger is considered copywritten material not for distribution with at least attribution, linking back to the original work, or authorization from that author.

Oreo :: DemConWatch FAQ

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