NazNet Community Forum FAQ

Here you can find answers to questions about how the board works. Use the links or search box below to find your way around.

What is the History of NazNet - how is it funded?

What is the NazNet Fellowship Forum?

The NazNet Fellowship Forum is an Internet-based forum for members and friends of the Church of the Nazarene. Dave McClung is the owner.

What is the history of NazNet?

Dave McClung writes:

NazNet as we know it today was started by an lay member of a Nazarene Church in North Dakota. She was enlisted in the Air Force. I belive the year was 1985. Prodigy had just started marketing online service. Compuserve had been online for several years, but its marketing wasn't aimed at the consumer market. Prodigy opened a number of forums. One of them was simply "Religion." The airman from North Dakota posted, "Are there any Nazarenes out there?" I was the second to respond. At first, "Nazarene" was just a thread, but it grew so rapidly that Prodigy gave us our own forum. They didn't think there would be enough Nazarenes so they named it "Evangelical/Nazarenes." Well, it became the most active Religion Forum on Prodigy.

It continued to grow until sometime around 1992 when Prodigy decided to charge by the minute. That decision caused our group to divide. Nazarene forums sprang up on most of the services, but it wasn't until the World Wide Web came into being that we pulled back together.

I think it was 1994 when Bryan Merrill registered NazNet.Com. He brought NazNet online with several pages linking to other Nazarene sites. When I saw Bryan's site, I volunteered to help him get a discussion forum started. Bryan did the technical side and I started emailing my friends from the Prodigy days. Within a month or so the fellowship board was up an running. Bryan Merrill was owner and webmaster. I was moderator of the fellowship forum.

I think it was 1998 when Bryan and I reached agreement for me to become the owner of NazNet. (Since NazNet does not generate any income, being owner really means "pay the bills.") NazNet has been pretty much the same since then.

So, to answer your question I would suggest that NazNet really started in 1987 although the NazNet name didn't come into the picture until much later.

-Dave

How is NazNet funded?

Dave McClung finances NazNet, and contributions are not sought or accepted.

Who may join? May I post anonymously?

Do I have to be a member of the Church of the Nazarene?

You do not need to be a member of the Church of the Nazarene to participate.

May I post as a guest, use a pseudonym, or anonymously?

You must be registered with your real name to post on NazNet. If you really need to do an anonymous post, it is suggested that you email a NazNet regular in whom you have confidence and ask them to post your message for you. The post will be in their name, but it can be made clear that they are posting for someone else. The NazNet hosts are willing to help with this, but you are welcome to use anyone who agrees to work with you and keep your confidence.

Why are discussions about suicide not allowed on NazNet?

Dave McClung writes:

Some topics, like suicide, are appropriate for discussing in a group where you know the people in the group. On NazNet, you never know who is reading your post. You may be engaging in a philosophical discussion with someone you know, but the person reading may be in a situation where such a discussion might push them over the edge. It is too great a risk to take.

I substituted punctuation for a swear word so why was my post deleted?

The NazNet hosts consider "obscured profanity" to be profanity. Please express yourself using real words that are acceptable on NazNet.

I was warned about a personal attack on someone who does not even post on NazNet, how can that be?

NazNet's rule against personal attacks concerns attacks on NazNet participants, denominational leaders, and public figures in general. For instance, doing a post that says some national leader "is a liar" is considered to be a personal attack the same as if some regular participant is called a liar.

Granted, the moderators may wish to use their discretionary judgement in some cases, but the blasting of some public figure on NazNet is considered to be a breaking of the NazNet rules. Paul told Timothy "that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for...all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness." Our participation on NazNet should reflect this guidance...even concerning some political leader who is making very poor choices! You are welcome to discuss those choices, pro or con, but personal attacks are not welcome on NazNet.

I was warned about a personal attack and all I did was quote an article from elsewhere on the Internet, how can that be a personal attack?

As noted elsewhere, NazNet's rule against personal attacks concerns not only NazNet participants, but public and denominational figures as well. Finding a quotation that is a personal attack and bringing it to NazNet is still a personal attack. You aren't responsible for what others say, but if you bring their words to NazNet you are responsible for them appearing on a forum.

There are two words of clarification that can be added here:

The hosts want to be as accomodating as possible in this. Interesting quotes often spark discussion. Just be careful to use quotes in that context and not as a way of "getting around" the "no attack" rule.

In general, be careful about copying words off of one web site and bringing them to NazNet. Most news and opinion web sites are clearly copyrighted. If you are quoting more than a line or two it is preferred that you simply post a link to the article. Then, in your own words, tell us why you think the article is worth sharing.

What does it mean to be courteous, gracious and sensitive on NazNet?

NazNet is a "Nazarene-friendly" place on the internet. The NazNet Fellowship Forum is an Internet-based forum for members and friends of the Church of the Nazarene. All posts are to reflect this. The purpose of the Forum is to provide a place for fellowship, not to foster debate and argument. That does not mean that NazNet participants never disagree or hold strong opinions. It does mean that those who participate are required to maintain an attitude of respect for others, to behave with kindness, and in a spirit of fellowship. Although it is the rule on some forums on the Internet, "in your face," unfriendly posts are not acceptable on NazNet. Those who insist on posting in that style will be warned by a moderator, and subsequent posts will be deleted.

An excellent resource on this topic is John Wesley's classic sermon Catholic Spirit -- some have suggested it should be required reading for all who participate on NazNet.

What does it mean for NazNet to be Nazarene friendly?

NazNet is a place for fellowship among members and friends of the Church of the Nazarene. Obviously, our participants have a keen interest in all things "Nazarene." NazNet might be said to be "pro-Church of the Nazarene." Our participants are free to discuss Nazarene doctrine, education, missions, and the like. However, attacks on the denomination, its leaders, its doctrines, its educators at the denominational or local level are not allowed. Any who come to NazNet for such a purpose will be reminded of our purpose. If they persist, their posting privileges will be revoked. Our Lord tells us that our love for one another is the hallmark of our discipleship. (See John 13:35)

I received an uncomplimentary email (or other private communication) related to my participation on NazNet, what is NazNet going to do about it?

Unfortunately, things like this happen. In general, NazNet is not responsible for, and has no control over, what people say to one another via email or other private communications, even if the conversation started on a NazNet forum. Beyond that, the NazNet hosts do not wish to receive copies of such emails and will not serve as referees in such disputes. Also, please do not copy such emails to the forums. However, there is an exception to this: if you receive a private message here on NazNet that you think breaks the rules of NazNet, you can click on the "exclamation mark-in-triangle" icon located near the bottom left of the message to report it to NazNet Administration. If the Administrator agrees that the PM constitutes a violation of the rules of NazNet disciplinary action will be taken. Please keep in mind, though, that Jesus details how we are to deal with conflicts in Matthew 18:15-17, and a person involved in an online conflict will do well to review and follow our Lord's direction in such matters.

I see a post on a NazNet forum that breaks the rules, what can I do about it?

This is a complicated issue. Some people have problems expressing themselves without moving into the realm of personal attacks. When that happens the hosts have to get involved. But before dealing with that, let it be stated that just because a post expresses strong emotions or positions, and especially, just because you disagree with the content of a post it does not necessarily mean the post breaks the rules.

For the sake of answering this question, though, let's assume you are reading a NazNet forum and find a post that breaks a rule here on NazNet. The proper response is to click on the "report this post" icon. Describe the post (subject and author) and ask the hosts to review the post in reference to the rules of NazNet. Please do not reply to the post on the forum in an effort to set the record straight, etc.

The hosts will consider the post at earliest opportunity and take appropriate action. Please remember that the hosts are all volunteers, so reaction times may not be so quick as might be desired. Beyond that, they use their best judgement in fulfilling their responsibilities. King Solomon is not available to serve as a host at this time, so be as forgiving as possible when their judgment disagrees with yours.

A host has responded to one of my posts disagreeing with me on some point, may I reply?

When hosts post they are usually simply posting as NazNet participants. In that case, you may reply as you would to anyone else. Hosts who are posting in an "official capacity" will sign their post in such a way as to identify their post as "official." In that case, please cooperate with the instructions of the hosts.

Is it okay to post copyrighted material to NazNet?

The hosts of NazNet do not claim to be experts on copyright law, but here are some agreed upon principles that will provide guidance on this issue: Items found elsewhere on the Internet don't have to carry a copyright notice to be considered legally copyrighted. The wisest approach to copyright is to assume all material is copyrighted unless there is clear evidence that it is in public domain. Material from magazines, books, and newspapers are almost certainly copyrighted.

There is a fair use doctrine that applies to copyright law. The idea is that people are free to quote minor portions of a work so long as they give proper credit.

With these two principles before us, we ask the participants of NazNet to follow these general guidelines:

Please don't copy articles from elsewhere on the Internet, or the words from an email distribution list, or articles from magazines or books, and post them on NazNet.

If you wish to quote someone, be sure your quotation would be considered to be an insignificant portion of the work you are quoting from, and that you give credit for it.

If the information is already on the Internet, it is probably better to simply post a link to the information you wish to share.

Concerning this issue, the hosts will deal with individuals who break copyright laws more from a pattern of posting on their part rather than single, isolated instances. In other words, if a person decides to copy an entire news item to NazNet, it will likely be ignored the first time. If they return in a few days with another article from elsewhere, they may receive an informative email, directing them to this portion of the FAQ. Then, if they continue, they may find their posts containing copyrighted material being deleted. Of course, the final step should never happen so long as those involved are willing to cooperate with the NazNet leadership.

How do I leave NazNet?

All it takes to leave NazNet is to stop visiting the website. You donít have to notify the administration or do a post announcing your intention to leave. Just unsubscribe from any threads you are following via email and stop posting.

If you are concerned that you lack the self-discipline necessary to stop posting you can request that your posting privileges be revoked. Your registration will be adjusted so that you will no longer be able to post.

In our fallen world there are sometimes complications that have far reaching consequences. If a person feels that their name appearing on NazNet places them in danger we can change their username. However, if your posts have been quoted in other peopleís responses to you, your name will still appear in their quotes. Removing those instances requires an extraordinary, time consuming effort.

Are political discussions allowed on NazNet?

Because...

1. The purpose of NazNet is to foster fellowship and community among members and friends of the Church of the Nazarene and...
2. Political discussions tend to bring out the worst in some of the best people...

...the leadership of NazNet has declared political discussion to be unacceptable on our forums. Posts deemed by our forum hosts to be political in nature will be removed.

Notes:

1. We've learned that sometimes a post that is fairly innocuous in and of itself will only invite followup posts that are of the nature that we don't allow. In other words, having your post deleted may not necessarily mean that you've posted something completely out of line; just that we've been down that road before and we don't want to take that trip again.

2. Non-political discussions of current events are welcome on NazNet forums.

How do I get a host to delete or change a post I know has incorrect information in it?

The hosts serve to keep the conversation safe, fair, and as much as is possible, accurate. However, hosts don't always have the time or resources to track down the validity of every claim made. If a criticism is made hosts try to keep the discussion civil, but they are not investigative journalists. If you read something on Naznet you know to be inaccurate but don't feel free to post your own response please use the "report post" feature to let us know. Anonymity is honored when requested. NazNet leaders will do their best to update conversations based on information received.

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