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The Unofficial RedState FAQ, Version 3.0

Not necessarily the views of this station

What is “NT”?
Well, in some contexts, it stands for “New Testament,” but not here at RedState. “NT”, sometimes stated as or N/T or some other permutation, stands for “No Text”. Posters often use it to indicate that they are not posting any text in the body of their posting. When perusing the “Recent Comments” block in the middle of the page, one can then tell there is no other info in the posting.

What is “5″?
When someone uses “5″ as a posting title, or some other derivative, such as “55555″ or “5!” or “5**5″, they are ranking the comment/diary as a “5 out of 5″. In the olden days of RedState, it was possible to rank comments and/or diaries, but that capability was removed due to (as I understand it) some abuses that occurred. When someone ranks your diary or comment as a “5″, it’s a compliment.

What is “Reply To This”?
The “Reply To This” link is found at the end of each posting in a discussion thread. It is used to create threaded responses in a discussion. Use it! It makes reading threaded conversations far easier, and it makes it clear who a responder is responding TO.

We have threaded comments at RedState to help organize the various discussions that result from postings. Failure to maintain the thread can leave to disjointed commentary and at time confusion as to whom the comment is addressed.

When you read a comment that you would like to reply to, you click on the “Reply to This” link at the bottom of that comment. This will move you to a new window for you to type in your reply.

What is “Blam!”?
“Blam” is used by (at least some) RedState moderators to indicate that they’ve banned a user. Why are users banned? For many reasons, but primarily because they’ve used excessive foul language, they’ve re-registered after being banned previously, or in recent weeks, because RonPaul™ boosters, Obamanauts, and Sarah Palin haters have been too obnoxious in their religious rants about their favorite candidate. Consult the RedState Posting Rules for more information.

What is PULLING A KOWALSKI? (ht: kowalski himself…)
“Pulling a Kowalski” is an eponymous term and a euphamism for replying to your own comment with another comment. I do it because my blogging brain works in a strange, asynchronous manner — thoughts I would rather have placed in their proper order during execution are mysteriously delayed “in flight” while my brain parses them, and arrive out-of-order in the output stream. It is left to you, Dear Reader, to read re-parse all the comments and reassemble them into a coherent thought, if possible. I have to do this myself a lot of the time, alas.

I also do it sometimes because I am of different minds on a given subject, or because part of the subject is tangential to the rest, but that is rarer. Everyone knows I was a leftist before I became a Republican and the resulting schizophrenia is diminishing, but I fear will never be completely dormant. I don’t do it to take up space deliberately or to annoy people, and I’m glad that most around here have found it to be endearing enough to name the practice after me.

NOTE: When RedState 3.0 first arrived, there was actually a button titled “Pull A Kowalski” that appeared when you attempted to respond to your own comments. Unfortunately, the instability of RS3 required the admins to pull that feature. Oh well – kowalski had his 15 mins of fame…

What is a “moby”?
The word “moby,” as used here, refers to the musician, who in 2004 encouraged the pathetic, tone-deaf trolls who listen to his work to go on conservative boards and be so over-the-top that it would serve to discredit conservatives and Republicans. We now use it for anyone pretending (badly) to be a Republican or conservative, who is instead trolling for no reason we know or care. Once identified, they get tossed.

What is a “troll”?
A “troll” is described on the following sites:

http://www.teamtechnology.co.uk/troll.htm

http://www.teamtechnology.co.uk/troll-tactics.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_troll

http://www.firelily.com/support/depression/trolls.html

Periodically RedState will get hit by a major wave (dozens, or even hundreds of them showing up around the same time) of leftist trolls. Trolls can be rather annoying, but most of them are easy to spot and are usually banned within minutes. In consequence to past attempts at trolling RedStaters often pay a lot of attention to the membership history of posters, and commentors (long established members are less likely to be trolls). This is why occasionally a new registrant will be treated somewhat harshly…there is natural suspicion that they’ve registered simply to “troll.” (thanks to Herodotus for the info)

The “concern troll” is a special kind of troll who writes comments or diaries that show “grave concern” about a candidate or policy position on the conservative/GOP. They seldom are truly concerned, but are simply masquerading as “one of us” and are trying to stir things up. (On rare occasion, the poster is TRULY concerned and trying to have an honest discussion, so RedState participants need to be a little graceful in how they handle potential concern trolls)

What is “The Hinz Rule”?
This “rule” originates from a diary by RSer David Hinz, where he encouraged us to not “feed the trolls.” When someone invokes the Hinz Rule, it says “OK, folks, that’s enough, let’s not encourage this troll-like person to continue”. But what’s a troll, you ask? “Troll” is a common term used to describe Internet message-board troublemakers…see more about it here, in Wikipedia.

What is REDHOT?
Redhot entries are created by RedState moderators, contributors and Directors who have brief postings to share, and just wish to throw out little tidbits. They usually cannot be commented upon, although on occasion a moderator will open comments on a particular entry. If the general populace wishes to comment on a Redhot entry, they should start a diary/blog entry and point back to the Redhot entry.

Who are the directors?
The directors are those who founded and set direction for Redstate.com. They are Erick, Ben Domenech, Mike Krempasky, Clayton Wagar, Victoria Gardner Coates, and Dan McLaughlin. They also act as contributors and moderators (see below). Oh, and see the About document for an up-to-date list.

Who are the moderators?
They are the ones who enforce the rules and keep things from getting out of hand. Be nice to them and follow their instructions! Moderators are the Directors (see above), plus streiff, Leon H Wolf, Robert A Hahn, Moe Lane, Adam C, and maybe one or two others who I am not aware of. Moderators are also contributors (see below)

Who are the “contributors”?
Contributors are individuals who are able to create front-page stories and REDHOT entries. They have been blessed with this privilege by the Directors of RS. There are far more “contributors” than there are “moderators” and/or “Directors.”

How can I contribute?
Unless you’re stunningly brilliant and the RS Directors realize that immediately, you’ll probably just start off as a lowly blogger like the rest of us. To create your own blog content, a) register for RS, b) sign on, and c) click on the “Create New Diary Entry” near the top of the page. If your content is worthy, you may see some comment responses, and perhaps even recommendations. My advice: lurk for a while – don’t post any blogs or even any comments before you’ve read RS for a couple of weeks. Get used to the kind of content that is acceptable and the tone of how you interact with the rest of the community.

Why doesn’t my stuff show up on the front page?
Only contributors and/or Directors can post items to the front page. Occasionally a diary will be “promoted” to the front page, if the contributors/Directors see a worthy entry.

How do I do those cool HTML tricks?
Comments and diary/blog entries can be created with just plain text, or by using HTML to augment an entry. Neil Stevens has been kind enough to create a number of different “tutorials” on how to use HTML at RedState. Read Neil’s hints and tips and you’ll be far better equipped to post here. Also, socrates (well, not THE socrates – OUR socrates) posted a diary on formatting that provides some good hints.

Note: Here on Redstate 3.0, there is a little less need to use HTML. The buttons above the comment entry and/or diary entry fields will lead you through some of the formatting through the use of a formatting “language” known as “markdown”. The buttons automatically generate the markdown tags.

How do I create a signature?
Click on “My Profile” in the white box near the top of the page. Then click the Edit button in the white box just below the “My Profile” line. then update the “Signature” field near the bottom. You can use HTML in that field, per the instructions in the prior FAQ.

What’s up with the “(Un)Recommend” button?
If you have registered for RedState and you are reading a blog entry that you are particularly fond of, you can recommend it by clicking the (Un)Recommend button (near the top of each diary). This does some kind of voodoo magic behind the scenes and can boost that blog entry into the “RECOMMENDED DIARIES” list on the right. A secret algorithm determines where the recommended diary goes on the list and how long it remains there. If they told us the algorithm, they’d have to shoot us. NOTE: DO NOT recommend your own blog entry! It is bad manners, it is against the posting rules, and it is greatly frowned upon by the rest of the RS community.

What determines the order of the Recommenders in the “RECOMMEND THIS BLOG ENTRY” box?
In the old RS 2.0, the list is sorted by longevity on RedState. However, now the recommends are listed in the order they are received.

How do I follow recent comments to RedState?
Everyone has their own technique to read RedState. In RedState 2.0, a feature called the “Tracker” would allow a user to see what comment postings had appeared since their last visit. However, that feature fell victim to the (as of 9/08) convoluted web site caching mechanism. There is currently a “Recent Posts” link at the top of the page that serves as a rudimentary way to tell what’s been added of late – but once you’ve entered a particular diary, there really is no way to tell what’s been added.

A very nice addition to RedState 3.0 – You can follow your own comment threads by clicking “My Profile” and scroll down to “Recent comments by (your name)” and see if anyone has responded to your comments. But alas, there is no good way to follow new comments as a whole. Hopefully the “New” indicator from RS 2 will somehow be resurrected some day.

I have a beef with RedState – where do I go to complain?
Click on the “Contact” link at the top of the page. You can send Redstate an email, and someone will (may) contact you via email…at least that’s how it’s worked for me in the past.

Who the heck is “Franz”?
Franz is RedState’s resident canine diarist. He was planning on running for POTUS, but we believe he is now holding out for a cabinet position in the McCain administration.


For additional information…Adam C wrote a nice entry, similar to this one, back a year or so ago. It has some excellent information on etiquette, abbreviations, etc. Please check out his writeup as well.

That’s all I can think of for now. I know I’ve missed something. I will update the FAQ as I think of new items, or as our esteemed contributors and bloggers provide their ideas and/or criticisms of my list.

Note: the original title of this diary ended with “2.0″, but it really was just the 2nd version of the diary. I now changed it to read “3.0″ so it reflects that the information is sync’d with RS 3.0

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