SA Community Guidelines
If a comments forum is present on an article on our website, and you wish to take part in the discussion, please keep in mind these Community Guidelines.
The comments forum, where enabled, can provide an opportunity for readers to ask questions about an article, or offer an opposing viewpoint supported by peer-reviewed science.
The comments forum should not devolve into name-calling, ideological bickering, off-topic rants or anti-scientific claims. With that in mind, some community guidelines are below. We reserve the right (but are not under an obligation) to remove any content a commenter provides and/or ban users from commenting for any reason, including if a commenter violates the letter or spirit of these guidelines.
Be friendly, or at least civil
It’s easy to come across as rude, mean or sarcastic online, but we do not allow that tone here. When commenting or replying, please remember that sentient people with biographies, vulnerabilities and emotions read our site. Racist, sexist, homophobic, discriminatory, vulgar, violent, name-calling, ad hominem, baiting and generally offensive comments will not be tolerated.
Stay on topic.
Do not use the comments forum to discuss topics unrelated to the article.
Do not use the comments forum for customer service. Our customer service contact information is found here.
Scientific American is a premier publication dedicated to scientific information. If your beliefs interfere with acceptance of the results of scientific inquiry, then please do not discuss them here.
Do not sell or promote anything.
Do not offer personal contact information. If your screen name is an email address, please contact customer service so that we can correct it for you.
Do not claim to be someone you’re not, and don’t claim to speak for an entity if you’re not entitled to do so. Use of real names is encouraged.
Do not repeatedly post the same content.
Do not plagiarize.
Always cite your sources and properly attribute quotes.
Only post relevant and appropriate links.
Do not link to content that does not abide by these guidelines or that is irrelevant to the discussion.