[IMPORTANT: I have confirmed that there are functionality issues with certain older versions of Internet Explorer -- specifically, IE7 and earlier. I highly recommend using Internet Explorer 8, Safari, Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox when browsing the website in order to ensure full Disqus functionality.]
Baseball Time in Arlington now uses a third-party commenting system (Disqus) for front-page conversations, which boasts a number of really cool community-oriented features such as actual website registration (and non-expiring cookies, so you no longer have to log in or input your name/e-mail every time you want to post), threaded/sortable commenting, profile customization and tracking (e.g. avatars, custom names, all-time post count numbers, etc.), more robust integration with existing social networking platforms, and -- perhaps coolest of all -- real-time commenting, which enables you to view the newest posts on the page you're currently visiting without refreshing your browser.
To join the conversation, you can do one of several things:
Create a Disqus account (recommended): It's fast, it's easy, it doesn't require e-mail verification (at this point, at least), and it allows you to do stuff like track your post history and the number of 'likes' your comments receive, set a custom display name, create an avatar, and more. You can sign up after you're finished writing a comment by clicking the 'Post as ...' button, then clicking on 'Disqus' on the left side of the pop-up screen, and then clicking the 'Register a new profile' link at the bottom; alternatively, you can sign in with your existing Disqus login credentials if you already own an account.
You can also register directly for a Disqus account at this link.
Sign in using Facebook/Twitter/Google/Yahoo!/OpenID: Pretty self-explanatory. Keep in mind that this will enable you to remain logged in during subsequent BBTiA visits, but does not allow you any control over your avatar or name, or enable you to customize your options to your liking. And no, your personal login information is not compromised by using these options.
Post as a guest: The default option, but by no means the recommended option, and possibly only enabled temporarily. This will require you to input your e-mail and display name every time you want to post. If tedium is your kind of thing, go hog wild.
Once you've registered for a Disqus account and signed in (this should happen automatically upon registration), you can click the avatar alongside your chosen name, or go to the top of the commenting module, click the Disqus logo, and click 'Edit Profile.' There, you can set publicly displayed info like your display name and location, choose a custom avatar, sync up your Disqus profile with other social networking platforms such as Twitter and Facebook (which also allows you to tweet/share BBTiA content and/or comments), set up e-mail notifications, choose your time zone, and more.
The Disqus commenting module works on the main page and in The Clubhouse, but not in the forum -- which does not require registration to post in, but also uses the old commenting system -- at this time. However, forum posts will still appear at the top-left corner of the home page, so there is still benefit in using the forum.
It's really very simple: No ad hominem (personal) attacks, excessive vulgarity, baiting or otherwise abusive behavior will be tolerated. Basically, be civil and respectful towards others. Vigorous disagreement and debate is welcome, but personal attacks directed towards other commenters will be dealt with accordingly. Baseball Time in Arlington management also reserves the right to remove/edit comments at its own discretion, although 90-plus percent of cases will fit under the aforementioned conditions.
In cases where a simple edit will not suffice, first- and second-time offenders of this policy will find their posts removed. The third time, the offending post will be removed and a 24-hour commenting ban will be imposed. The fourth time, the offending post will be removed and a permanent IP ban will be applied.
If at all possible, BBTiA management will leave an otherwise acceptable comment in place, but remove the offending content and leave an edit or deletion note. However, we cannot guarantee total consistency on this, as comment moderation is inherently subjective, and there will be cases where this is not an achievable outcome. If an individual poster persists in posting comments that require frequent edits/deletions, we'll apply the above "four strikes and you're out" policy and go from there.
[Policy last revised 02/20/2011.]