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Good Behavior Guide For Contributors and Editors

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  • Summary: We are all friends under the OEIS roof. Contributors and editors alike have an obligation to be polite and courteous to each other at all times.
  • The accuracy and growth of the OEIS depend on the efforts of volunteers, both contributors and editors. The work of contributors should be welcomed and affirmed even when the submissions are not up to OEIS standards. However, contributors should make every effort to ensure that their work is up to the high standards of the OEIS.
  • The editors (both Associate and Editors-in-Chief) undertake their tasks knowing that not all submissions will be worthy of inclusion, and that some submissions will require editing prior to inclusion. We expect all editors to communicate courteously even when rejecting submissions or dealing with contributors whose behavior is angry or discourteous.
  • Contributors to the OEIS have an obligation to be patient and courteous with the volunteer editors who are processing their submissions. Remember what it says in the submission form: "Contributions are made under The OEIS Contributor's License Agreement, and may be edited, altered, or removed by other contributors. If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly, then do not submit it here."
  • Likewise, the editors have an obligation to be patient and courteous with each other and with anyone submitting sequences. Harsh, angry, impatient, or discourteous conduct on the part of any editor or contributor is strictly forbidden.
  • If any submitter or editor becomes contentious or discourteous, the editors should consult the Editors-in-Chief, and if necessary, the Board of Trustees, including the President, to determine the proper course of action (e.g., blocking the account temporarily or indefinitely). The agreed sanction will be communicated firmly but courteously.
  • A letter from Neil Sloane, July 3, 2017:
When the OEIS started out as a web site, back in 1995 or so, we were very small. But now we are The OEIS Foundation Inc., and our web site is famous, we should behave like respectable citizens of the world. Remember, everything we do - in the database, in the wiki, on the Sequence Fans Mailing List, on all the editors mailing lists - is being watched by the whole world.
When you post a criticism of something, above all, be polite and courteous. Show good manners.
If you are a long-time reader of Math Reviews or Math Sci Net, as I am, you learn that you never say "the proof is wrong". You say "it appears that one of the steps in the proof may need further justification". This accomplishes the same thing to any knowledgeable reader, and is far more courteous.
In short, when discussing something, remember that what we say should not give offense to anyone involved, to his/her mother or daughter, or to their lawyer. Everything we do is public.
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