Not every site has the same policies! When you join a new site, it is always a good idea to find out how roleplay threads are set up and what is and is NOT allowed. The following are the community guidelines we have set in place for Iwaku pertaining to Out of Character discussions for your roleplays.
OUT OF CHARACTER VERSUS IN CHARACTER
On Iwaku, we have separate areas for In Character (IC) and Out of Character (OOC) discourse. Purely OOC posts are not allowed in the IC sections, as they are considered spam. This is to keep the IC areas cleaner and ensure that people do not hop into the middle of your roleplay threads and ask to join! OOC threads allow for better communication between players and help keep the roleplay thread free of confusion.
We do allow the FIRST post of an IC roleplay thread to be purely OOC, as long as it contains important information regarding the roleplay. (It is a good idea to include a link to your OOC thread in this post if you choose to do this.) If you want to have separate posts for a large quantity of information, you will need to create a separate OOC thread.
We do allow OOC comments when they are included at the beginning or end of an IC post, but we encourage you to use an OOC thread instead to avoid confusion or clutter for other players when reading along.
While OOC threads are encouraged, they are not required! Many people are starting to use Discord servers for group games instead. People often do not use OOC threads for private group games and one-on-ones (private two-player roleplays).
Roleplays with the BIO AND JUMPIN or NO BIOS REQUIRED prefixes often do not have an OOC thread, either, due to the more casual nature of these games. That is fine, but we ask you to keep in mind that character sheets/bios, when posted alone, are considered OOC posts and do not belong in the IC areas.
OUT OF CHARACTER THREAD PREFIXES
OPEN SIGNUPS/CLOSED SIGNUPS threads are standard OOC discussion threads. They are used to talk OOC about the roleplay and usually used to apply/sign up. "Open" or "Closed" is used to show the current status of whether the roleplay is accepting new players. We ask all Game Masters (thread owners) to keep this up to date to avoid player confusion.
Some GMs may wish to use additional threads, and so we have provided a couple extra prefixes. To avoid clutter in the forums, we limit the amount of OOC threads you may have per roleplay. You may have one thread of each prefix type per IC thread.
CHARACTER INDEX threads are used ONLY to store character bio sheets. Some GMs may require you to apply in a Character Index thread instead of in their main OOC thread, so be sure to read their rules. However, ONLY information provided by the Game Master or character bios may be posted here. Conversation and questions belong in the main OOC thread for the roleplay. Make sure to provide links to your players and establish these rules clearly in your OOC.
INFO DUMP threads are used ONLY when a GM would like to keep their lore or world info separate from their OOC discussion. Once again, conversation and questions belong in the main OOC thread. If you wish to allow players to post their own lore, that is up to you; just make sure to clearly set these rules in your OOC.
Since it is possible to use multiple prefixes per thread, it is a good idea to keep all of your threads up to date with the roleplay's current OPEN/CLOSED status. You should not, however, end up with a thread that has three prefixes!
If you find yourself hemmed in by the thread limit, you can create a Clan for your roleplay instead! Be sure to read the Clan guidelines. Clans may not be used for roleplays containing sexual content.
MANAGING YOUR OOC THREADS
If you post a thread in the wrong section or accidentally mix your OOC and IC threads up when making a post, you can and should contact Staff to correct the mistake using the Thread Moderation Request form. Staff Members have the ability to move threads and posts as well as delete anything made in error. Remember that you can delete your own posts.
All OOC threads and IC threads for a roleplay are archived at the same time (60 days of inactivity from the last post). If a roleplay dies or needs to be revived, you can and should send a request to Staff to lock the thread or to move it back from the Thread Archives and bump it. There is no need to make a new thread unless you are starting over! Multiple threads can be merged into a single thread by Staff if you have already made a new one.
You also do not need to delete your threads when they are done, and it is actually against our behavior guidelines to delete roleplay content from other members--they may want to recover that content later! Be careful to get permission if you need to delete a character sheet, or contact a mod to separate the post from the thread if a player is uncooperative.
Be patient if your roleplay has not gotten attention yet. Ads for group roleplays may be posted in Group Advertisements or submitted to the ad banner rotation in order to spark interest. It may take a few days to get any posts or attention.
DO NOT bump your OOC thread more than once per 24 hours or unless it has fallen off of the first page of its forum. Spam is not allowed! Go here to learn more about bumping and what constitutes spam. If you are having trouble with getting players after over a week and have been advertising, or you have made multiple attempts already with the same idea, you can post a thread looking for advice in Roleplay Help. It may also be a good idea to check out this guide on making attractive OOC threads.