Rules Of Engagement

Public Eye is going to have some pretty strict rules of public etiquette. People who want to post comments on Public Eye and join in our debates and conversations are going to have to follow our rules. We know that not all Web logs are like that, but this one is. If it's any comfort, the Public Eye team promises to follow the same rules. And we'll try our best to be clear about what the rules are. When they change -- and they will -- we'll let you know.

There's legal language nearby. Here's the plain English: no libel, slander, no lying, no fabricating, no swearing at all, no words that teenagers use a lot that some people think aren't swearing but we do, no insulting groups or individuals, no ethnic slurs and/or epithets, no religious bigotry, no threats of any kind, no bathroom humor, no comparing anyone to Hitler, Stalin or Pol Pot. We expect heated, robust debate, but comments should be polite and civil. We consider Public Eye to be public space so behave and write accordingly.

Yes, what is not allowable is subjective. Public Eye and absolutely reserve the right to remove posts we think break any of the rules or the spirit of the rules and we reserve the right to ban individuals from commenting. We will use language filtering programs to block certain words and we will use human editing too.

Comments should be limited to the topic of the original Public Eye posting and should always be discussions about news, journalism, public affairs, and politics -- public things. This blog is not the place for private conversations, no matter how innocent.

We require everyone who comments to register and provide a real e-mail address. No exceptions. And posting comments or e-mailing Public Eye is not the same thing as complaining to CBS News or notifying CBS News of a problem – legally, there's a big difference.

Very important: if you see a comment that you feel is inappropriate, let us know by clicking on the "comment complaint" button.