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Community Rules

We at The Washington Post want to foster a community for civil, insightful, and inclusive discussions around the news and our journalism.

By joining the conversation, you are agreeing to follow the community rules below as well as The Post’s Discussion and Submission Guidelines, Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

What is our goal for the conversations on The Post?

Our mission at The Washington Post is to scrutinize power & empower people. Our global community of readers is central to that mission of public service. We host comments because we want to learn from your unique perspective on an article or column we published.

Join in discussions and build on top of ideas.

The best discussions come from engaging with ideas that other users have shared. Before you post, check to make sure someone hasn’t already made your point. And, if they have, a “like” is an easy way to show you appreciate the sentiment. You can also reply back to someone if you want to add to an idea or disagree with a point made. By starting your comment showing that you are listening to others, you play a role in fostering a healthy reader community.

Send questions you have about our reporting or writing at The Post.

Do you have a question for a reporter? You can email our reporters directly — you’ll find their email address by clicking their byline — or you can post the question in the comments. By posting in the comments, you’ll give other readers the chance to see the answer or respond with follow-up questions.

See a problem? Suggest a correction.

At The Washington Post, we have a history of holding ourselves to the highest levels of accuracy and editing standards. And we’ll continue to do so. If you know something to be factually incorrect in a story, you should submit a correction request here. Readers often improve our news report by flagging errors.

What type of posts should I avoid?

Conversations on The Washington Post are for discussions specifically about the article or column published by the newsroom or opinion staff. We’ll remove posts that don’t follow the topic at hand. Read our complete Discussion Guidelines here.

How do I join the conversations on The Post?

Before you can start posting, you need to create an account with The Post, verify your email address and create a display name, which will appear with any comment you write. Comments are now a subscriber-only feature. You can check your subscription status in your user profile.

Once you set up your subscriber account, you are ready to start posting. Your comments may be reviewed by a moderator before they are posted to the site. This may take us some time, given the volume of articles and comments, so please be patient.

If I write a post, what name will appear?

When you create your account, you will have the option to add a display name, which is required to post in the conversation. We recommend, but do not require, that you use a display name like your first and/or last name. We recognize there are legitimate reasons to use a pseudonym to protect your privacy but using a version of your real name can help lend credibility to your comments. Any names meant to impersonate or personally attack others will result in a ban from the community.

Once you select or change a display name for your account, it will be associated with all previous and future comments you make.

Can I edit or delete a post I wrote?

Once a comment is posted in The Post community, it’s on the record. The Post does this to ward off “ring-and-run” comments, in which readers post an inflammatory comment only to remove it after the fact without consequences. Readers should stand behind what they write.

I read a comment that violated the rules listed here. What should I do?

Our team moderates discussions 24/7, but we rely on the community to help police discussions. If you see a post against the rules, use the flag button to report it. Reports go directly to our team, so be judicious.

I posted a comment and it was removed. Why?

First, take a moment to review the rules above. Most comments are removed from discussions on The Post because the posts attack or insult other readers rather than discuss the issues at hand. This can include replies to comments that break our guidelines.

When does The Post turn off comments on an article?

The comments are used to foster a healthy conversation among readers and are used at discretion of the editors and the newsroom.

What does it mean if I am suspended or banned?

Moderators may suspend or ban a reader after they post multiple comments against the rules above. Suspensions are for varying amounts of time, and the suspension will automatically lift after the allotted time. A ban is a permanent block from commenting on the site.

Suspensions and bans only preclude readers from posting in discussions on The Post. If you are suspended or banned, you will still be able to read all of The Post’s reporting. Due to the volume of messages we receive, we cannot respond to requests to appeal bans or explain suspensions. If you are banned, do not attempt to create a new account after being banned. We will also ban the new account.

What is a featured comment?

Featured comments are comments picked by Post staff members to highlight thoughtful and diverse contributions to the discussion. Criteria include: likes by readers, replies, and previous history from a specific reader. We also take into consideration comments that offer personal experiences related to the story.

Is there a way to see my past comments on The Post?

On every comments section, there’s a “My Profile” tab with a collection of past comments you’ve made. From there, you can see how many replies and likes your comments got from other readers.

I still have more questions. Where can I send them?

If you have additional questions, you can send an email to

Thank you in advance for taking the time to read the rules. We value our readers and our reporters and hope to create enlightening moments for you in our journalism — and in the comments.