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Etiquette Guide

Welcome to How to Win Friends and Influence people online... a strategy guide to the intricate, complex world of interacting with other adults... in their fantasy worlds... where most of them have a god complex.

Kidding, kidding. This is really about general etiquette at Behind Closed Doors Roleplay. It outlines the behavior that we value and the respectful culture we want our members to be a part of creating with us.

+ First impressions are important, let’s make them meaningful: When it comes to new members, whether it is their first experience with a forum role-play community or their fiftieth, it can be a challenging or even intimidating experience adjusting to a new community, with people you do not know and rules that are new. Understanding that transition, we encourage our members to welcome them onto our site; or guide them towards resources that can help familiarize them with their new home. At the same time, we do not want new members to feel overwhelmed with the amount of greetings they get right off the bat. The best place to say hello to new members, or extend the olive branch to let them know you would like to chat more, is in their introduction thread.

When you go in there read not only their comments, but the rest of the community as well, so that you can perhaps find something new to add to the thread while welcoming them. You may surprise yourself with the common ground you can find with those new members or the existing community. The more we learn about each other the more friendly you can become. Common ground helps us all to relate and affords friendships and writing partnerships to blossom.

Try to personalize every message you leave. Most of us have read enough spam mail or mass communications in our life via mail and e-mail that we almost immediately drown out the entire message once we think it is a canned statement. So, think about what you want to say before you send it and add some flair to it, those will leave our new members feeling great about it and inspire them to strike up a genuine conversation with you in return.

+ How to not be rude and still be honest: We all have things we don’t like in general or even on occasion about one another. There are times those things we do not like are going to come up because of actions or conversations others are having. There is nothing wrong with expressing the fact that you don’t like something. However, it is best suited to do so with respect. It is not okay to shame someone else for enjoying something unique or sharing a different perspective than you. People do need to feel free to express when they do not like something; we need to be cognizant of each other’s feelings so that those expressing a dislike are not ostracized or feeling singled out for sharing a different opinion. All of our community should feel at home and comfortable here. If a topic comes up that is making you uncomfortable, try politely expressing yourself, “I apologize but this topic makes me uncomfortable, can we please talk about something else?” is always the best way to go. Making snide or passive aggressive comments about certain topics or people’s interests is negative. If it’s an on-going thing it can be viewed as harassment.

We must have courtesy and compassion for all.

That’s not a carte blanche pass to interrupt conversations that are otherwise harmless that you stumble upon, so remember to be considerate! There is a time and place for everything. It can be difficult to know when it is appropriate to speak up and change the subject yourself, or to politely bow out until the content naturally changes on its own. When in doubt, you can always ask a staff member to help you in that situation. We’re more than happy to step in and help mediate if needed at times.

One final thing. We do not tolerate shaming of any kind for any reason, in any method of communication. Kink shaming is only one example but probably the most pertinent for an adult roleplaying community. We all have particular tastes. It's alright to express a dislike for something of course, but making another user feel badly for liking what they do is not okay. Passive aggressive or snide remarks towards another user because of their tastes in role-play or kink is unacceptable. It can lead to hurt feelings or aggressive interactions between members, both of which we do not want on the forum.

+ Declining roleplay ideas/proposals: We don't always agree on what's hot or exciting or worth writing about. But that doesn't mean anyone should be rude or obnoxious when it comes to turning down a proposal. Be direct about why you'd rather not wish to partake in said idea, but refrain from coming across as judgmental. You don't need to come up with any excuses or lies about why you don't wish to take on said thread, gentle honesty is always the best way to go about things. "I'm sorry, it's just not really a setting I'd find interesting to write about." would be a pretty good example of how to react when you're contacted by a member whom asks you to create a specific story with them. Perhaps they'll back down immediately, or ask if you'd want to talk out another approach to the story. Either way, if you feel like that other person is starting to harass you with multiple messages and suggestions, simply because of your refusal, then don't hesitate to contact a staff member about the problem.

+ Dropping roleplays: At some point, we will probably all experience the problem of having a particular thread losing its appeal to us. Instead of forcing yourself to continue with it, or opting to simply stop responding without any explanation, there's a much healthier and better way to deal with the problem: By telling your partner. Talk to them, explain what's wrong. Do you have limited time for roleplays, did the plot take a wrong turn somewhere, have you gotten bored of the characters? - Whatever the reason, just communicate about it. Perhaps you can work it out and change some things so the thread becomes exciting and fresh again. Or maybe you will just decide to quit it. Both of those options are perfectly fine. Nobody should feel guilty for wanting to drop a thread. But we can control how we go about it, and should always do it in the most respectful and friendly manner.

Of course, it's not a guaranteed thing that your partner will understand. We can't control how others feel or think. They might take the news badly, become angry and upset - but that doesn't mean you should feel bad. As long as you weren't rude or obnoxious about why you wanted to walk away from the thread, you can hold your head up high and continue your search for the perfect stories.

+ Having your ideas rejected and taking it like a champ: Not everybody have the same taste or passion. You might have an amazing idea, but the person you're approaching doesn't necessarily feel the same way. That's your cue to either work more on your idea or simply search for another potential partner whom would feel interested. You shouldn't take it as a personal attack on yourself if another member doesn't feel like your idea is exciting, not at all. It's is no less awesome than the next person's. It's just a matter of finding someone that's interested in it as well. If you do get rejected, please respect that. Don't spam the other person, don't get upset and throw a rage fit, don't ask again and again if they're sure or if they've changed their mind. It's both uncomfortable as well as rude and is considered as harassment.

+ Roleplaying vs Cybering: "What's the difference?" You might ask. Let us take a moment to put it down in a simple manner: Roleplaying revolves around building imaginary worlds with fictional characters. Whereas cybering is about you wanting to write sexy things with the other person behind the screen. So, cybering could be viewed as something that deals with IRL (in real life) people and situations, where you want to use yourself as a base for a 'character' to write sexy things with. People that wish to focus on cybering should take that completely off the site.

BCD is also not a dating site. But it's completely understandable that sometimes people 'click' together and we of course fully encourage that kind of a special bond. We simply ask that everybody refrain from flirting heavily in the open areas and on our Discord. For an example; by oversharing explicit and personal sloppy and cheesy descriptions that leave other members feeling extremely awkward and even uncomfortable. With that being said, nobody is going to come flying with a paddle and whack you over the head if you flirt playfully with someone else. It's just a matter of knowing when to pull these flirtations to the PM's. (And with that in mind, we ask you to remember the thin line between flirting and cybering).

On that note, we ask everybody to also remember to respect each other and take no for an answer. It's considered a grave offense if a member starts harassing anyone else; by asking for nudes, continuously asking for personal information or sending lewd messages that are entirely inappropriate. If any member ever feels uncomfortable when talking to another, please start with letting that person know that they have crossed the line. Sometimes people simply don't know when they've gone too far and need to be directly told so. However, if that wont work, contact a staff member immediately and we'll take it from there.

+ Communicating with your partners: It's always hard when a partner gets very slow suddenly or simply vanishes into thin air. But, let's not forget that we all have lives outside of the forum. Perhaps something comes up in people's lives that they have to deal with, and in return they have to minimize their time spent online. The best way to deal with this, is to simply contact your partner. Ask them what's up. Nothing good comes out of sitting around and waiting, getting more frustrated with each day that passes, without at least reaching out to the person in question. But as much as you deserve an explanation, then you must also remember not to take a negative approach on the matter. Send a message, ask politely and calmly - do not spam them or take a passive aggressive tone. It's not uncommon that people simply forget how long it has passed since they last replied and in most cases at least, nobody wants to blatantly ignore the one they're writing with. It just happens. And we all have to deal with it like the adults we are.

On that note, if you find yourself being the one lacking time for your roleplays or the forum in general - then please take just a moment to send a private message or write a status so that your partners know what's up. Communication is very important. It's better to be honest about why you're slow, instead of vanishing and leaving people wondering what went wrong. Perhaps they'll start worrying their writing was shit, maybe they'll even wonder if something happened to you. So, please, keep people updated. Even if not everybody will understand, I can assure you that the majority will - and they'll be grateful you reached out to them.

+ Expressing yourself on the site: Our status updates are not supposed to be used to reflect on negative emotions towards other members on the site, like for an example slow writing partners. We do not condone any guilt tripping or shaming of any kind, as has been stated before. Please also refrain from using your status or the commenting system in general to troll people (an innocent laugh between people is just fine) or otherwise try to stir up trouble. We ask you also to refrain from dragging political or religious matters to the site in any form. Yes, you are entitled to your opinions and believes - but as a roleplaying community we'd rather focus on the fun, bubbly and creative sides of life. If you want to debate with someone over these things, please use Discord or whatever other communication method you wish.

+ Sharing some NSFW images: There is always a time and a place to be sharing some NSFW images between yourselves. Please, remember never to share anything too risque on the site or on our Discord. We expect you to follow our NSFW rules at all times. Let's also not forget about the fact that not everybody enjoy looking at the same things you like. So, if you suddenly spot a very saucy image you're dying to share with your partner, make sure to first ask them if they're even interested (or in a safe enough environment) to view said image. There's nothing worse than opening up a chat window and having a surprise dick pic right in your face (ladies, you know what I mean...).

+ Negative/uncomfortable topics: As much as we encourage all of our members to feel free to talk about things and share status messages about their day, we also want to ask everybody to try and avoid bringing any harmful, hurtful or hateful subjects to the site. We sympathize in every way when anyone feels bad, but we are not licensed doctors or psychiatrists here. This site is meant for chatting and writing, but should not be viewed as a tool to help out with dealing with your depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, etc.

If you are in critical need of professional help or counseling, then you can contact the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit their website Here. You can also contact a help service through HopeLine at 919-231-4525 or 1-877-235-4525 or by visiting their website Here.
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