The purpose of this forum is to encourage discussion and debate on dictators and their methods, as well as our book. It is intended to permit anonymous discussion (use any alias you'd like). Links will regularly be posted here to recent news articles about germane topics, and discussion can go from there. Feel free to post what you want here; it doesn't have to be the NewsFeeder that starts all the conversations. See the charter below for more information on usage rules and netiquette.
Note: Presence of a country does not necessarily mean it is a dictatorship; absence of a country on the forum doesn't mean it is not. Simply, a post means a subject covered by the book was employed in that country.
No spam ever. Every single spam message will be deleted, and if it gets to be a major problem, we will take other appropriate measures.
Keep the posts on topic, and relevant to the appropriate country.
Be civil: treat your fellow interlocutors with respect.
Typically, it is customary to post your replies below the previous text.
Under no circumstances will we permit links to, discussions about, or any reference to warez, cracking, child pornography, or illegal drug use. All offending posts will be immediately removed and other appropriate actions may be taken as necessary and at the owners' sole discretion.
No douchebaggery. Yes, you.
This forum is currently unmoderated, which means it will eventually attract spammers. At that point, all forum posts will be filtered by a sophisticated heuristic moderation process designed to filter out only spam. All other posts will be permitted. Should at some point, the forum become so popular that off-topic posts become a problem, the filter will be re-calibrated to also filter out off-topic posts. However, at present all posts are acceptable and will be permitted. Should this process become overwhelming, at the owners' option, this forum will go "invitation only." Hopefully that moment will be a long time in the future, and this forum will remain practical and useful for a long time.
Is this social networking? No. We have no interest in who you are, who your friends are, or what your friends "like." We don't want any of your personal information, and keep nothing about you on file. We are interested only in promoting educated, interested discussion about the topic: dictators and their methods.
Where is the "Like" button? Up your ass, probably. "XXX likes this" is the most idiotic and substance-free form of communication ever invented. Speak up and use your brain rather than jabbing blindly at the stupid "like" button. This is a discussion forum, not an exercise in lemming-like "group-think."
Can I be tracked on this forum? Not as far as we know. No effort is made to keep any identifying information at all. Choose any alias you want, post under different names, use a false email address. You are free and anonymous. Note however that the server does automatically note IP addresses in the logs.
How can I invite someone to this forum? Just send them the link to this page. There's no automatic "Invite everyone in your Hotmail addressbook" because we don't think that's a reasonable mechanism for selecting who to invite. Rather, you are free to thoughtfully consider and to invite people who would benefit from and contribute to a meaningful discussion here.
How can I post a picture or video? You can't. This is a text-only forum. If you find something interesting on the web, you may post a hyperlink to it. The forum will automatically dump any messages over 100KB.
Can I earn karma, choose an avatar, have a public profile, or send personal messages to other users? No, these are all characteristics of web forums. This elite forum doesn't permit any of those things. As a result, your posts are not tied to any traceable profile or email address, and is much simpler and faster to download and read. You may post a link to your website in your signature, but if it looks like spam we will erase it without warning.
Is this Usenet? Yes! Why? Because Usenet is particularly well-suited to discussing things like dictators. Not only is Godwin's Law perfectly acceptable, it's no easy feat to just knock out this server when the information is being replicated and distributed across the globe.
If posts written in foreign languages show strange characters, make sure your software is set so the "default character set" is UTF-8. (Your software has probably wrongly chosen Latin-1/ISO-8859-1 or something else).