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Forum Terminology

Admin(istrator) - anyone who has access to the control panel for the forum. A forum administrator is typically the owner or co-owner of the forum.

Avatar - small images that help to personalize posts and quickly distinguish one user from another.

Bot - a program designed to register and post on forums - usually with the intent of spamming.

Bump(ing) - the act of replying to a thread with the intention of bumping it to the top of the list.

Board - a shortened version of message board referring to the forum as a whole.

CAPTCHA - an acronym for "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.". Generally, a CAPTCHA is a image you must read and type into a text box to prove you are not a bot.

COPPA - refers to the "Children's Online Privacy Protection Act", enacted by Bill Clinton in 1998 to help protect children under the age of thirteen.

Double post - two consecutive posts by the same user.

Drive by (posting) - joining a forum and posting, then not coming back.

Emoticon/Smiley - a small image that expresses a particular emotion.

Flaming - hostile or insulting interaction between users.

Flooding - making many unwanted posts.

Forum - can refer to the forum as a whole or a particular section within a forum.

Hijacking - taking one's post and redirection attention elsewhere.

Lock - a locked forum is a forum in which you can no longer post.

Lurk(er, ing) - viewing the contents of a forum without registering and participating.

Moderator - one with powers to moderate (edit, move, delete, etc.) the posts of other members.

Off topic - unrelated to the topic at hand.

Poll - a section where member votes are recorded and tallied.

Post - a message submitted to a forum.

PM/Private Message - a means of privately contacting another member.

Rep/Karma - a system for identifying members who are well-liked or unpopular within a forum.

Sig(nature) - a message that is shown below each individual member containing personalized quotes, words of wisdom, links, etc.

Spam - unwanted posting.

Sticky - a thread that always stays on the top of the threads list.

Thread/Topic - a user-created area intended for a specific discussion.

Troll - one that posts controversial or irrelevant information with the intention of provoking other members.

Word filter - an automatic censor of a word within a post.

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Link & description: Forum terminology - Common words one may hear while using forums and their meaning.

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