- Forums Try to sway the quorum.
- Blogs Learn about blogging.
- RSS Updates delivered by winged messengers.
- Netiquette Do unto others...
- Acronyms OMG! Not another TLA!
- Avatars What is an avatar?
- Emoticons Feeling emotional?!
- Guidelines Play fair and follow the rules!
- Book Challenge Get your book on!
- Top 10 Tips Want to amaze your friends?
Q. What are the Forums?
A. The Forum channel of the Community is divided up into 5 discussion areas or "Forums" (Mostly Mainstream, Simply Series, Cafe Social, The WRITE Stuff and Book Buzz). Registered Community members are invited to interact in the Forums by typing messages to each other in a message "Thread" or "Topic". These "Topics" have a title and an introduction, followed by the "Posts" or responses made by people who have something to say about the topic or an earlier response in the "Topic".
Some topics are fast moving, some are slow accumulations of comments or ideas. millsandboon.co.uk reserves the right to remove a post which does not relate to the topic being discussed. In addition, millsandboon.co.uk reserves the right to organise message boards in order to best serve the majority of our members. For example, narrow-interest or minimal activity topics may, at millsandboon.co.uk's discretion, be relocated to a more appropriate message topic/discussion, or deleted entirely.
The "Topic" can capture the feel of conversation, and flows in chronological order and includes anything from banter to debate and back again. Because the Forums are a system where people often know one another very well, the "Topics" can have a very rich and vibrant quality.
If you do not see a topic you're looking for, feel free to ask the discussion hosts if one may be created to cover the subject you are interested in. If you have any difficulty finding what you need, email us or click here to let us know how we can help.
Q. I want to post a message in the Forums! How do I do it?
A. To post a message in our message boards, you must first register as an millsandboon.co.uk Community member. When you register you'll be able to share your thoughts on your favourite books and authors in our Forum discussion topics by typing your comments into the text fields located in the discussion thread as a "Post".
Q. How do I get around in the Forums?
A. You get around or "navigate" through the discussion topics and forum areas by clicking on the links at the top of the topic area or from topic to topic by using the previous or next topic links below it.
Q. What is a blog?
A. A blog (short for Web Log) is a web page consisting of frequently updated, chronological entries on a particular topic. Our millsandboon.co.uk blogs feature journal entries from our registered millsandboon.co.uk Community members. Be sure to check back often to read their updates and comment on their blog posts.
Q. How do I make a blog entry?
A. Once you have registered as a millsandboon.co.uk Community member you will have a menu of options appear on the right hand side of your browser window. Here you can pick one of two options when creating a blog post. You can click on Blog Entry for a regular blog post or you can click on Book Review to have your blog count as a review for the Book Challenge.
Q. What is the Book Challenge?
A. This year we have challenged our Community members to collectively read 5000 books in an unprecedented attempt to spread literacy and the love of romance worldwide. If we achieve our goal, 5000 Books will be donated to The Reading Agency to share the love of reading with a community of others who may not have such easy access to books.
Q. What does that orange RSS button do?
A. That orange RSS button located within our millsandboon.co.uk Community pages means that a file (called an RSS feed) has been created and the content of the page can be "syndicated" for use in an RSS Reader. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. Several free and commercial RSS readers are available on the Internet like MyYahoo, iGoogle or MSN MySpace. For detailed instructions on how to use RSS on our site, click here
Q. I've heard that typing in ALL CAPS is bad? Why? Are there other rules that I should know about?
A. Typing in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS is considered rude because on the Internet, typing in ALL CAPS is the equivalent of shouting. This is a common rule in "Netiquette" (i.e. network, or Internet, etiquette). Here are the basics of netiquette.
Other Basic Rules of Netiquette
Be polite - remember that there is a human being behind every message. Do not harass, abuse, or threaten other members.
Lurk before you leap. By this we mean, learn the ins and outs of a community before you post. By reading the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) for a community and watching the messages posted by its members, you will get a feeling for the types of discussions that take place. If you want to discuss a topic that is not related to the community area in which you are participating, try going to another topic area or create a new one.
Keep private things private. Never publicise a private email or message in a public place. If you would like to pass on the message to another friend, or post it in a forum, be sure you have the expressed consent of the original sender.
Protect yourself. Don't give out your home address or phone number in a public area. Remember that whatever you post to a discussion forum is open for public consumption.
Don't plagiarise! Not only is it rude to claim someone else's work as your own, it's illegal.
Label your "Spoilers"! As many of the discussions on millsandboon.co.uk revolve around books, there may be times when you want to discuss a juicy plot twist, or surprising ending. Please be considerate of others who haven't had a chance to read the book yet by labeling your post with "Spoiler" in the subject line.
Q. In the message boards, people use phrases that I don't understand, like ROFL and BRB. What do they mean?
A. "Netizens" (Net citizens) have long been using the following shortcuts to express themselves more clearly. If you become familiar with these shortcuts, you'll have a much easier time understanding what everyone is saying. Here are some common abbreviations used in online communication. You can use them to save your fingers from having to type the whole phrase!
LOL = Laughing Out Loud
ROFL = Rolling On the Floor Laughing
BRB = Be Right Back
BTW = By The Way
IMHO = In My Humble Opinion
TIA = Thanks In Advance
FWIW = For What It's Worth
GMTA = Great Minds Think Alike
Q. What is an avatar?
A. An avatar is a small image that appears when you post to the forums or create a blog post and when you comment on any posts anywhere. It's your profile picture.
We encourage you to upload a photograph of yourself or an icon that really represents YOU because that photo or icon is going to be visible all over the millsandboon.co.uk community pages, not only on your blog and forum posts but in your friend's gallery and maybe even as a Featured Member. Instant Fame! Maximum dimensions are 300x300 and the maximum size is 100 kB and may not display pornographic, indecent or otherwise inappropriate imagery. Users may be requested by the Forum Hosts or Community Manager to change this avatar at any time.
Q. Can I delete my avatar?
A. You can't delete your avatar, but you can always replace it. If you choose not to upload an image from your files, you will be given the choice of a blank avatar to represent yourself in our Community.
Q. I've seen lots of people using little smiley faces in their postings. How do I make them?
A. Online communication can be a tricky thing! It's often hard to make your point just using the written word, because we have come to rely on other indicators (tone of voice, facial expression, body language) to see/hear what a person is feeling and thinking. Many community members use emoticons (those little smiley faces) to quickly express a feeling.
There is an index of the available emoticons on our message boards located just below the dialogue box into which you type your messages when you post on the boards. Have fun "spicing" up your messages!
We encourage lively debate in the Forums and Blogs, however, we are not responsible for the content or material of any individual postings. As a participant in our Community, you remain at all times solely responsible for the contents of your messages and any consequences arising therefrom, whether or not we modify the messages. Use common sense while posting.
We reserve the right to delete, move or edit messages that we deem off-topic, abusive, defamatory, obscene, in violation of copyright or trademark laws, or otherwise unacceptable. Advertising of any commercial product or service on these forums is not permitted. Chain letters and pyramid schemes are similarly prohibited. We reserve the right to remove the posting privileges of users who violate these standards of behavior at any time. We will not tolerate harassment, abuse, or the threatening of other members. If brought to our attention, we will review objectionable postings and take whatever action we, in our sole discretion, consider appropriate, including, but not limited to, modifying or removing messages.
Keep on topic: Responses to a particular thread should be on-topic and pertain to the discussion. Posting the same message to many topics or boards is considered spam. Duplicate messages will be deleted or consolidated by our moderators. Forum Hosts will assist with focusing topics and enforcing guidelines. They have the ability to edit/delete posts, to move, close or delete topics, and to temporarily moderate users' posts. Any messages you post will stay available to the public for as long as this discussion board is online. Any impersonation of a user within these forums, in any mode of communication, is strictly prohibited and will result in a banning. Please post carefully, once you have posted your message it is here to stay. We will not edit the content you wrote unless it does not conform to our guidelines. If we edit a post and you do not like the changes, we will delete the message at your request.To avoid annoyance, signatures must not be more than three lines of text.
You further acknowledge, as a contributor of material to millsandboon.co.uk's community, that you are granting (or warrant that the owner of such rights has expressly granted) to Harlequin Mills & Boon Limited and its affiliates a royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable, nonexclusive right and license to use, reproduce, broadcast and publicize your postings or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever, without any compensation to you. In addition, you acknowledge and agree that you have waived any "moral rights" in your postings.
We encourage your participation in our community; however, we expressly request that you do not use these sites to send us any unsolicited creative ideas, suggestions, or materials (collectively the "Creative Ideas"). By contravening this request and submitting the Creative Ideas to us, you hereby waive any ownership rights in the said Creative Ideas and acknowledge they will become our property. As our property, we will exclusively own all rights to the Creative Ideas worldwide, and will be entitled to the unrestricted use of the Creative Ideas for any purpose, without any compensation to you.
Any sweepstakes or contests conducted by authors personally are not endorsed, sponsored, or affiliated with Harlequin Mills & Boon Limited. Mills & Boon assumes no responsibility for any material outside of millsandboon.co.uk which may be accessed through any link accessed via millsandboon.co.uk, and, unless otherwise indicated at millsandboon.co.uk, millsandboon.co.uk is not sponsored by or affiliated with the linked sites.
10 Tips to Jumpstart Your millsandboon.co.uk Community Experience....
- Register: We know every Website says this, and you're probably tired of hearing it, but it's true. You really do want to register because when you register you'll be able to share your thoughts on your favorite books and authors, subscribe to your favourite blogs and discussions, create a fabulous profile page AND create your own content.
- Create a profile and Introduce yourself: Now that you've Registered/Logged in, the next step is to create a profile. Click the "My Profile" button at the top of the page to access your new profile page. At the top of that page you'll see two links, "VIEW", and "EDIT". Click the "EDIT" link and look at all of the information you are now able to share. (NOTE: This information is public so if there's something there that you don't want the world to know, leave it blank or put something really generic into that field.) Be sure to upload a photograph of yourself or an icon that really represents YOU because that photo or icon is going to be visible all over the millsandboon.co.uk community pages, not only on your blog and forum posts but in your friend's gallery and maybe even as a Featured Member. Instant fame!
- Read discussions and talk back: Now it's time to introduce yourself. The server might know you've arrived but nobody else will until you step into the spotlight and introduce yourself in the Forums. It's a good idea to include your blog address in your post or in your signature. You do want people to come and visit your new blog, don't you? (So you know: There's a signature block feature within your profile. If you missed it, click "My Profile" on the top right corner and scroll down to "signature". HTML is accepted in this box so you can pretty your signature up, if you like.)
- Read blogs and comment: Our hosts and community members are fascinating human beings who have a lot to share. You can surf their blog posts by checking out the home page for Recent and Featured Blog Posts or by clicking into Most Commented. You can even click the "Most Favourited" tab and find out which blog posts are the most popular! We've learned that all of that great blog reading may entice you to comment and we hope you will. We want to know what you think - and to help introduce you to other people who would like to get to know you by clicking back to your blog, either through your profile or signature.
- Start blogging on millsandboon.co.uk: Look up at the top right corner again and click the button that says "Create Content". On the next menu, select "Blog Entry" and start blogging! To add a book review to the 5000 Book Challenge select "Book Review". When you publish your blog post, you'll be able to find it on the front page immediately, in the "Recent Blog Posts" tab. You'll also find it in the "Favourites" tab under your personal information on your Profile Page if you choose to select it.
- Subscribe: You can subscribe to newsletters that will allow you to keep your finger on the pulse of current member news and special deals here at millsandboon.co.uk. You'll never be out of the loop again. If newsletters aren't your thing, RSS is here. We have RSS feeds for every area of the community - from the Blog pages to the forums, to you yourself and anything you care to keep tabs on in the community!
- Play with tags: If you look on the right side of the community pages, just beneath your content controls list, you'll see a section called "Tags". Tags are a bit like keywords. Hosts and members tag their content to help link content together. This makes it easy for you to find every single bit of content available in the community related to that keyword. The "tag list" is created based on the most recently used tags. When you're creating blog posts, be sure to type " tags" that will help others find your content when they are searching the site. Here's an example: If you're blogging about a Desire title, you'll choose the series category "Desire" from the drop down menu, but we also recommend you tag the review with the author's name and perhaps even the theme, miniseries or setting to make sure it gets picked up by people interested in similar types of reads.
- Share: You'll probably notice pretty quickly that there is a brand new link at the bottom of all Community blog posts and discussion posts that says "share". If you click it, you'll see a handful of social bookmarking icons that will allow you to share content you've enjoyed with the world or search for others who have shared this content. What? You haven't registered for Digg or De.lici.ous or Technorati? What are you waiting for?
- Go surfing: Click on the Blog tab in the top, horizontal navigation bar and you can access all of the fabulous community blogs at your fingertips. You can start surfing by most viewed, most discussed, most recent, and most favourited or simply navigate to your friends gallery and have fun picking random blogs from your buddy's list of favourite content. Select the Forums tab in the navigation bar at the top and you can see all of the wonderful conversation that's occuring on the millsandboon.co.uk Forums by series, imprint, author or jump into a discussion on the Cafe Social and really get to know some of your fellow millsandboon.co.uk citizens.
- If you notice that the posts from other people are displaying as if they were posted in the future, just go to your Profile page and choose the correct time zone that you live in. Like magic, you'll be back to the future!