This page is part of the Moderating Microsoft Forums series.

All moderators, whether an employee of Microsoft or not, represent Microsoft Corporation. For this reason, moderators must follow basic rules of etiquette in all forums. This makes for a more positive interaction with the community and promotes overall forum health.

The following guidelines help you understand good etiquette and how to conduct yourself:

  • DO NOT USE ALL CAPS – Using all capital letters looks like you are shouting.
  • Correct thread titles – Thread titles that are sensationalized or are too generic should be corrected by moderators. Thread titles enable users to quickly locate relevant threads, so changing titles is important, but should be done with caution.
  • Know your audience –Moderators need to realize that a typical consumer audience may not know all the proper terminology or how to perform some action, but an IT Pro or developer audience would. You need to consider this for every post. For example, if you ask a poster to open an administrator command prompt, consider who the audience is and if he/she would know how to do this. If you are not sure, provide the correct steps.
  • Correct product and brand names – There is a tendency to use conversational, abbreviated, or slang brand names in forums. For example, talking about Win7 conversationally is not appropriate in a public forum. Always refer to proper brand names, such as Windows 7. Also use proper capitalization of product and brand names. Do not use terms such as microsoft or windows 7. These should be properly capitalized as Microsoft and Windows 7.
  • Properly formulate full sentences – Write your posts in complete, intelligible sentences. Generally, it is best not to use abbreviations commonly found in Instant Messages or Text Messages. Examples of abbreviations in posts include the following:
    • Did U install from the MS site
    • TTYL
    • However, in some situations, use of these terms can help to calm forum posters.

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