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Gransnetiquette: guidelines for using the Gransnet Forums

Gransnet is a lightly moderated site - mainly self-policing. We’re all for freedom of speech but also aim to make grandparents’ lives easier, more interesting and fun, so where necessary, we will use our discretion to delete posts (or ban posters) if it seems to us that doing so is in keeping with this aim. We do have some rules and guidelines to make the Forums work properly, so that they’re a good place to hang out. 

Follow our Gransnetiquette and you'll upset no one and post happily for many moons. Better still, you'll never be on the receiving end of a quiet word from Gransnet HQ.

Moderation | General Ps and Qs | Foul language | Name-changing | Spamming | Deleting threads | Trolls and troublemakers

The forum rules: moderation (in all things)

Gransnet Forums aren’t pre-moderated; we don’t read and approve comments before they appear. Our policy is to keep intervention to a minimum and let the conversation flow.

That said, we will remove posts we believe to be obscene, racist, homophobic, contain personal attacks or break the law once they are brought to our attention.

The quickest way to let us at GNHQ know about a post (or thread) that you think should be deleted is to report it. You do this by clicking on the Report link, above and to the right of the post in question. We look at every reported post as soon as we possibly can.

General Ps and Qs

We'd appreciate it if you'd use the same courtesy when posting messages on forums as you would use when speaking to someone face-to-face. Please do bear in mind that life can be horrible sometimes, and it can really help if you have access to some moral support. We take a dim view of mean-spiritedness, ganging-up behaviour and rehashing old arguments.  

Swearwords and offensive language

Some people like swearwords, some don’t. It’s very often possible to find an alternative way of expressing yourself, even if you have something burning to say. We'd appreciate it if users kept to those alternative ways of expressing themselves as much as possible.

We have an extremely low tolerance for words that are offensive to those with physical or mental disabilities.


We discourage members from changing their usernames because we want everyone to be able to trust the relationships they build with others on Gransnet. However, you will be able to change your username once for sensitive threads. Alternatively, contact us directly at [email protected] if you think your current username is too identifying.

Posting links and spamming

We have no problem with people posting the odd link to other sites that other posters might find useful or helpful. But we will delete anyone's attempts to "spam" the boards with links, as a way of promoting their own site or product or blog, as it annoys our members. If you'd like to know more about promoting your product on Gransnet (without annoying everyone else and getting rebuked by other members), please read about our advertising opportunities.

Religion & Spirituality

We have a forum for this and we welcome posts on all religions and none. We are, though, a discussion forum, not a site for sermons.


Sadly, estrangement from family members, especially grandchildren, is something that affects some Gransnet users, and being able to post on our forums for support and advice can be a huge source of comfort.

We do ask, however, that users posting on our estrangement threads ensure that no identifying details of estranged family members are shared. The threads are intended for support purposes, but are open to anyone on Gransnet, no matter their situation.

Thread deletions

We don't generally delete whole discussion threads, unless they're libellous or racist or otherwise break the law, because it's frustrating for people to write carefully considered responses that, minutes later, are removed. That said, we're here to make people's lives easier, not the reverse so if a thread derails or becomes seriously unpleasant or a bunfight, we may decide it is best to delete it.

Also, if you have a pressing reason for wanting a thread you have started to be deleted, please report it to us (by clicking on the Report link, above and to the right of the post in question) and we'll take a look.

If a thread is deleted, please resist the temptation to start a new one, repeating and rehashing everything that has been deleted: that would be very bad manners and, of course, it's highly likely that the new thread will be deleted, too. Similarly, we will delete threads about other ongoing threads, as it causes too much confusion on the forums. 

Trolls and troublemakers

We hope you will find the vast majority of Gransnet discussions genuinely informative, supportive and friendly (even when we all disagree with each other!) Unfortunately, from time to time, all sites are visited by troublemaking "trolls", for whom friendly supportive chat is definitely not on the agenda. (For those who don't know, a troll is someone who poses as someone else in order to cause chaos, fulfil their own perverted agenda, or just for the hell of it.)

If you suspect someone of being a troll, please don't accuse them publicly on the discussion thread (if you're wrong, you could cause untold hurt; if you're right, you'll merely be giving them just the kind of attention they're after).

Instead, please report your suspicions to us (either by reporting a post of theirs or by mailing us at [email protected]) and we'll check them out.

Please bear in mind that we'd rather err on the side of being taken in than of accusing a genuine poster who's in need of support of being a troll.