In another forum I post on, a user was asking for a Code of Ethics to be implemented on the forum. Which of course is an impossibility. It just ain't going to happen. As I got into the discussion and pined for the good ol' days of newsgroups and thoughful discussions, another poster put up the following two links. Even though they are rather dated, I do believe they still hold some validity today.

The USENET Guide to Power Posting

1. Conspiracies abound: If everyone's against you, the reason can't *possibly* be that you're a ****head. There's obviously a conspiracy against you, and you will be doing the entire net a favor by exposing it. Be sure to mention the CIA, FBI, Oliver North and the Army as co-conspiritors.

2. Lawsuit threats: This is the reverse of Rule #1. Threatening a lawsuit is always considered to be in good form. "By saying that I've posted to the wrong group, Charlie has libeled me, slandered me, and sodomized me. See you in court, Charlie."

3. Force them to document their claims: Even if Jane Jones states outright that she has menstrual cramps, you should demand documentation. If Newsweek hasn't written an article on Jane's cramps, then Jane's obviously lying.

4. Use foreign phrases: French is good, but Latin is the lingua franca of USENET. You should use the words "ad hominem" at least three times per article. Other favorite Latin phrases are "ad nauseam", "vini, vidi, vici", "E Pluribus Unum" and "fetuccini alfredo".

5. Tell 'em how smart you are: Why use intelligent arguments to convince them you're smart when all you have to do is tell them?

  • State that you're a member of Mensa or Mega or Dorks of America.
    Tell them the scores you received on every exam since high school.
    "I got an 800 on my SATs, LSATs, GREs, MCATs, and I can also spell
    the word 'premeiotic' ".

6. Be an armchair psychologist: You're a smart person. You've heard of Freud. You took a psychology course in college. Clearly, you're qualified to psychoanalyze your opponent. "Polly Purebread, by using the word 'zucchini' in her posting, shows she has a bad case of penis envy."

7. Accuse your opponent of censorship. It is your right as an American citizen to post whatever the hell you want to the net (as guaranteed by the 37th Amendment, I think). Anyone who tries to limit your cross-posting or move a flame war to email is either a Communist, a fascist, or both.

8. Doubt their existence: You've never actually seen your opponent, have you? And since you're the center of the universe, you should have seen them by now, shouldn't you? Therefore, THEY DON'T EXIST! Call'em an AI project, to really piss them off.

9. Laugh at whatever they write. A good "HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA" should intimidate just about anyone.

10. When in doubt, insult: If you forget the other rules, remember this one. At some point during your wonderful career on USENET you will undoubtedly end up in a flame war with someone who is better than you. This person will expose your lies, tear apart your arguments, make you look generally like a bozo. At this point, there's only one thing to do: insult the dirtbag!!! "Oh yeah? Well, you do strange things with vegetables."

11. And, if all else fails, remember that you can always fall back on the favorite defense of Soc.women: "Who cares what YOU think -- this is Soc.WOMEN!". Add "DAMMIT!" for effect.

12. Be sure to have a cute signature that proclaims that you are a man basher. No one will respect you unless it's clear that you hate men.

13. Call'em a "Pman" if you can't think of anything. Tell the linguists to stuff it -- YOU know a diminutive when you see it.

14. Make things up about your opponent: It's important to make your lies sound true. Preface your argument with the word "clearly." "Clearly, Fred Flooney is a liar, and a dirtball to boot."

15. Cross-post your article: Everyone on the net is just waiting for the next literary masterpiece to leave your terminal. From rec.arts.wobegon to alt.gourmand, they're all holding their breaths until your next flame. Therefore, post everywhere.

16. Use the smiley to your advantage. You can call anyone just about anything as long as you include the smiley. On really nasty attacks add "No flames, please". When they bitch, call them an ass for not being able to recognize sarcasm when they see it.

17. Threaten to destroy if your opponent refuses to give up. This at least gives you an appearance of power, even if nobody on the net gives a damn about what goes on in

18. Should you post something exceedingly stupid and later regret it, don't worry. You needn't cancel the article. That only shows what a wimp you really are. Deny that you ever sent it. "It must be a forgery!" (Yea, that's the ticket, it's a forgery!) "Someone broke into my account and sent it!" "It's that damn backbone cabal out to get me!" Take your pick, they've all been used before.

19. A really cheap shot is to call you opponent a "facist". By itself, it really does nothing. But, when used often, and in enough articles, it can make you a net-legend.

20. And finally, never edit your newsgroup line when following up (unless you're expanding it). This drives 'em wild. Be sure to follow up as many articles as possible, even if you have nothing to say. The important thing is to get "exposure" so that you can be called a "regular" in your pet newsgroup. Never change the ">" symbol when following up; that's for wimps. Dump a hundred lines of "INEWS FODDER" in every article.

Now that you know the ways to properly post on USENET, let's try an example:

In article <>, Bill Netter writes:
> Dear Sally,

I object to your use of the word "dear". It shows you are a condescending, sexist Pman. Also, the submissive tone you use shows that you like to be tied down and flagellated with licorice whips.

> While I found your article "The Effect of Lint on Western Thought"
> to be extremely thought-provoking,

"Thought-provoking"? I had no idea you could think, you rotting piece of swamp slime. :-) (No flames, please)

> it really shouldn't have been
> posted in Soc.women.

What? Are you questioning my judgment? I'll have you know that I'm a member of the super-high-IQ society Menstruate. I got an 800 on my PMS exam. Besides, what does a Pman like yourself know of such things. This is Soc.WOMEN, DAMMIT!

Your attempts constitute nothing less than censorship. There is a conspiracy against me. You, Colin, Charlie and the backbone cabal have been constantly harassing me by email. This was an ad hominem attack! If this doesn't stop at once, I'll crosspost a thousand articles to

> Perhaps you should have posted it in misc.misc.

It is my right, as granted in the Bill of Rights, the Magna Carta, the Bible and the Quran, to post where ever I want to. Or don't you believe in those documents, you damn fascist? Perhaps if you didn't spend so much time sacrificing virgins and infants to Satan, you would have realized this.

> Your article would
> be much more appropriate there.

Can you document this? I will only accept documents notarized by my attorney, and signed by you in your blood. Besides, you don't really exist anyway, you Pseudo, you.

> If I can be of any help in the future, just drop me a line.


> Bill.

Sally Sourpuss

"If we can send one man to the moon, why can't we send them all?"

Soc.women Women WOMEN, DAMMIT!
Flame Form

[ ] Clueless Newbie  [ ] Loser
[ ] indy.netter
[ ] Me too'er        [ ] Pervert  [ ] Geek
[ ] Spammer          [ ] Nerd     [ ] Elvis
[ ] Fed              [ ] Freak    [ ] FLAMENET
[ ] AOLer/Euronetter/PIer/MSNetter
[ ] Other:

You Are Being Flamed Because:

[ ] You posted a message in a newsgroup other than our topic
[ ] You posted a binary in pieces LESS than 5000 lines
[ ] You posted a binary in a non-binaries group
[ ] You quoted an ENTIRE post in your reply
[ ] You continued a long, stupid thread
[ ] You started an off-topic thread
[ ] You posted a "YOU ALL SUCK" message
[ ] You said "me too" to something or "Send ______"
[ ] You don't know which group to post in
[ ] You suck
[ ] You brag about things that never happened
[ ] Your sig/alias/server sucks
[ ] You posted a (phone-sex or a make money fast) ad
[ ] You posted something totally uninteresting
[ ] You crossposted
[ ] You posted a message all written in CAPS
[ ] You posted racist s***
[ ] I don't like your tone of voice
[ ] I think you might be a member of CO$
[ ] I think you might be a fed
[ ] You posted a "Test"
[ ] You junkmailed me

To Repent, You Must:

[ ] Give up your AOL/Euronet/MSN/Planet Internet account
[ ] Bust up your modem with a hammer and eat it
[ ] Jump into a bathtub while holding your monitor
[ ] Actually post something relevant
[ ] Read the f****** FAQ
[ ] Be Pat Buchanan's love slave
[ ] Be the guest of honor in alt.flame for a month
[ ] Apologize to everybody in this newsgroup
[ ] Post your tests to alt.test/misc.test

In Closing, I'd Like to Say:

[ ] Blow me
[ ] Bite me
[ ] Get a life
[ ] Never post again
[ ] I pity your dog
[ ] Go to hell
[ ] I think your IQ must be 7
[ ] Take your s*** somewhere else
[ ] Learn to post or f*** off
[ ] Do us all a favor and jump into some industrial equipment
[ ] See how far your tongue will fit into the electric outlet
[ ] All of the above