Hello everyone! Well, I'm sure you lot don't need reminding, so as we all very well know, the final installment of the Harry Potter series comes out July 21. *Allows pause for site-wide squee'ing* Naturally, we here at MNFF are hard at work preparing for said release, and we've recently decided precisely how we'll be handling it. Please read carefully, as we cannot stress enough how fundamentally crucial this information is to both authors and readers alike.
- MuggleNet Fan Fiction will be closed from July 19 thru July 23. To be clear: this means that the queue will be closed and we will not be accepting any submissions, nor will we be readily available to assist users in any capacity, from 12:00 midnight the morning of July 19th thru 11:59 p.m. the night of the 23rd. Therefore, the queue will reopen at midnight, July 24th. Please note that stories already validated and posted on the site will be available to read during this time. Only the queue is closing.
- When MNFF reopens the queue for submissions on July 24, it will be with a strict NO SPOILERS policy. This means that expressing and/or writing about anything that transpires in Deathly Hallows will not be permitted in the stories themselves, in author profiles, summaries, banners, "clever" e-mail addresses, or graphics/expressions of any kind. Spoilers include plot twists, characters' deaths, romantic developments-- anything and everything. A user discovered to have posted any spoiler in any part of his/her profile or story will have their account deleted and banned on both MNFF and the main site, MuggleNet.com. Do not even allude to a spoiler, as we will count this as directly stating one. For example: If one part of your profile says "I ship Luna/Neville!" and another part says "My ship finally sailed!" That is a spoiler. We cannot express how seriously we are taking this. ANY breach of this policy and your ability to so much as view any part of MuggleNet will be permanently withdrawn.
- Starting on August 1, and no sooner, we will begin to allow spoilers in STORIES ONLY. Expressing a Deathly Hallows spoiler in a banner, profile, story title, or summary will still be prohibitied and punished with a permanent ban. August 1 only means that authors can begin working the events of DH into their stories, and/or writing new fan fictions based off the events of DH. However-- stories that contain any sort of DH spoiler must wear a Deathly Hallows Spoiler Warning. (This warning will become available for use under the "warnings" category beginning August 1, so it will not be viewable/available before then.)
- We will alert everyone, via news post, when it is okay to begin expressing spoilers freely: i.e., in profiles, summaries, banners, etc. However, this will not be for a while. Do NOT take it upon yourself to decide when enough time has passed, or you will be subject to a permanent ban. Our enforcement of the above policies will be just as strict and unforgiving a month after the release as a week after the release.
A separate but very similar policy for our Beta Forums is still being ironed out, but we feel confident in saying that the forums will remain open (even when the queue is closed between the 19th and 23rd) in some capacity. We'll be reporting the full details on that very shortly, so stay tuned.
In closing, we urge everyone to exercise caution and compassion throughout and following the upcoming release of Deathly Hallows; not just here at MuggleNet, but wherever you might go, on-line or otherwise. We enjoy a good laugh as much as the next person, but please realize that spoiling the end of a long-lived series such as Harry Potter for fans who've spent years waiting for the end is anything but funny. It is only rude, hurtful, and a terribly pitiful display of immaturity. For those who would not even consider spoiling the book for someone else (because we know the great majority of you never would): we beg that you pay extra close attention in all your communications on MNFF so that you do not unintentionally let a secret slip. Furthermore, while we will do everything in our power to keep the secrets of the last book safe and off our site, it is perfectly possible that something might slip through the cracks before we catch it. As such, we advise that anyone who has not finished the book and is truly worried about being spoiled, simply not visit ours or any other Harry Potter related site until you have, indeed, finished it.
As always, thank you all for taking the time to read this extensive post. Please do not hesitate to contact one of us with any questions, comments, or concerns you might have. Happy writing!