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Commenting tips

In addition to the community rules, we've also put together this advice on commenting which we hope you'll find useful.

You might also want to read our help pages, which explain the way the Community works in more detail.

Letting us know about problems

The community team will look for any problems users may be experiencing within the community. However, we need your help to quickly spot problems. Each message on our forum has a feedback link. If you click this you’ll be able to tell us what you thought about this individual message. You may want to let us know how it has helped you but you may also feel the message is inappropriate or breaks our rules.

Once you send your feedback we’ll examine any problems and taken any action necessary. So if something is bothering you please get in touch. The feedback is confidential and we’ll never mention your identity when dealing with an issue.

Posting in capitals

Many people find that messages posted in capitals LOOK LIKE PEOPLE ARE SHOUTING.

This can be difficult for people to read and may be seen as quite aggressive. Please try to avoid this or other people may be reluctant to respond your message or find it upsetting.


Please avoid swearing in the Community. Although you may feel that swearing is a way to express how you are feeling, other users may find swear words troubling. We have implemented a filter for common swear words to help with this, but messages that include regular and excessive swearing may be edited or removed by the Community team.

Using paragraphs

Posting a long message without including paragraph breaks can make it difficult to read and can be very hard to understand for some people on the autism spectrum. When creating a discussion or writing a reply please try to make sure you’ve added paragraphs to make it easier to look at.

If you’ve created a message and the paragraph breaks have been lost, or you’d like to add them afterwards, then you can click on edit to make changes to the discussion or reply.

Avoiding arguments

Everyone on the Community has a right to make their views clear. Even if you disagree with what someone else thinks you shouldn’t be offensive towards them. People are welcome to disagree with each other but our rules ban personal insults.

If you have questions about what someone else has said then you should ask them, but you should be polite when doing this. Try to avoid making assumptions about other Community members and take the time to read their message. Being passionate and having a strong opinion about a subject won’t ever justify insulting another member of the Community.

Moderators may ask individuals to take a break from a particular debate or close a discussion temporarily to help calm down a row. If this happens then please don’t continue the same argument in a different discussion.

Using smileys

Smileys are the small images of faces used to show emotions in a discussion. They are also known as 'emoticons' (which stands for emotion icons). Examples available in the Community include:

Smile Foot in mouth

You may find it helpful to use these to show when you are making a joke or are expressing upset or anger. This can help people understand the tone of your message, something that can be hard to get across in text.

Our help pages include information on how to add smileys and the following link shows the smileys used in the Community that can be accessed through keyboard shortcuts.

Protecting your privacy

The Community is a public message board and we want to protect the privacy of all our users. This is why we don’t have private messages and why we ask you not to share any personal details (such as your email or telephone number). Anything that appears on the Community may be read by anyone on the internet, so please bear this in mind when leaving messages.

The Community team may edit or remove messages that contain personal information. If we do this, we’ll let you know, either through a reply to your message or through an email.

Picking a topic

There are a number of different topics within our discussion forum. When starting a new discussion please try to pick the place you think is the most appropriate. This will help people who care about the same issues respond quicker and get you the best support possible.

If you aren’t certain where a message should go then please pick one place and mention you aren’t certain if it’s in the right place. We'll be able to move your message if we think it’ll sit better in another area.


You should never see advertising messages in our Community. If you do see messages that have only been posted to sell products, promote services, link to affiliate programmes, pyramid schemes or other adverts then please let us know through the feedback option under the message.

Libel laws

We want you to be able to use the Community for support with any problems you are experiencing but libel laws can be quite complicated when complaining about services or individuals. To avoid legal problems for yourself or the NAS you should avoid writing messages about specific individuals, services or companies. This Community is public and isn’t a legal channel for complaints so this kind of message may be edited or removed.

If we do need to remove a complaint we’ll work with you to find a way to express your concerns that allows you to get the support you need without writing possibly libellous comments.

If you do need to make a complaint about what has happened to you or others then a good place to start may be your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau


If you have any tips you think should be included here then please let us know in the feedback area of the Community and we'll consider adding them.