1. First things first: If you can’t be polite, don’t say it. Of course, we don’t want to stifle discussion of controversial issues. Some topics require blunt talk, and we’re not always going to agree with each other. Nonetheless, please try to disagree without being disagreeable. Focus your remarks on positions, not personalities. No name-calling, slander, comments about someone’s mother, comparisons to notorious dictators — you get the idea. And under no circumstances should you say anything that could be taken as threatening, harassing, sexist or racist.
2. Don’t use obscenities — even if the word in question is often used in conversation. We’re not going to list the words we object to; you know what they are. Remember, this is a public forum and we want everyone to feel comfortable participating.
3. Please stay on topic. Think of it this way — if you hosted a book club meeting at your house, you wouldn’t want someone to show up and insist on discussing reality TV shows.
4. Rambling is the kiss of death. The 90 seconds you have better be very, very interesting to the larger community.