Blogs Terms of Service

The Observer-Reporter's Community Blogs programs is a free service for communication, self-expression and freedom of speech, and encourages the availability of information, healthy debate, and new connections between our readers. As a result, there are some boundaries on the type of content that can be posted on the Observer- Reporter in order to uphold these values and the freedom of expression it encourages.

By using, creating, posting, or commenting on our blogs, you agree to be bound by our terms of service. We reserve the right to change these terms or impose new conditions as needed; by continuing to use our site, you are agreeing to such changes as modified.

The Observer-Reporter and are not responsible for content you post. Any content you provide becomes the property of the Observer-Reporter, which has sole discretion over its use.

Our team reviews all content, and has sole discretion on who can blog and what topics they choose. If we find that a blog violates our terms of service, we take one or more of the following actions based on the severity of the violation:

  • Edit or reword offending content, blog post or blog
  • Delete the offending content, blog post or blog
  • Disable the author's access to his/her account
  • Report the user to law enforcement

The following is a list of terms of service violations:

False or Inaccurate information: In keeping with newsroom standards, do not contribute content that you know is inaccurate, false or confidential.

Copyright and plagiarism: It is our policy to respond to clear notices of alleged copyright infringement. This includes copying and pasting others' work as your own, or plagiarizing another writer. Also, please don't provide links to sites where your readers can obtain unauthorized downloads of other people's content. Please don't mislead or confuse readers by pretending to be someone else or pretending to represent an organization when you don't. We're not banning parody or satire - just avoid content that could to mislead readers about your true identity.

Crude content: Don't post content just to be shocking or graphic. We will not tolerate shocking images, crude language, or inappropriate behavior.

Violence & harassment: Don't threaten other people on your blog. For example, don't post death threats or encourage your readers to take violent action against another person or group. Do not harass or bully others.

Adult Content: We do not allow adult content, including images or videos that contain nudity or sexual activity. We also have a zero tolerance policy towards content that exploits children, including publishing or distributing child sexual abuse imagery, or encourages or promotes sexual attraction towards children.

Hate Speech: We will not allow content that promotes hate or violence towards groups based on race, ethnicity, religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status, or sexual orientation/gender identity.

Illegal activities: We will not tolerate any content that engages in illegal activities or promotes dangerous activities. Please also do not use your blog to sell or promote illegal drugs. In serious cases, we may report you to the appropriate authorities.

Personal and confidential information: It's not okay to publish another person's personal and confidential information. We will not allow bloggers that post someone else's credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, unlisted phone numbers, driver's license numbers, etc. Likewise, information that is already available elsewhere on the Internet or in public records is not considered to be private or confidential under our policies.

Spam: We will not tolerate spam. Some examples of spam include creating blogs or posting comments on other people's blogs specifically to promote a product or service, designed to drive traffic to your site or to move it up in search, and using content from other sources for the purpose of generating revenue or other personal gain.

Malware and viruses: Do not create blogs that transmit viruses, cause pop-ups, attempt to install software without the reader's consent, or otherwise impact readers with malicious code.