Introducing SlideShare Community Guidelines

As SlideShare has grown, we’ve felt the need to formalise the unwritten rules that shape a healthy community. While we think the community guidelines we’ve come up with are reasonably complete, they may be edited later for clarity or to explicitly add something.

For now they are listed below and later this week they will be linked on the main site too.

SlideShare is not just a website to share presentations, it is a community of people who share presentations on this website. As with any other community, there are some guidelines that outline what it means to be a member. By being a member, you agree to play by those rules, i.e., your use of the site is governed by the Terms of Use and the following guidelines.

  1. We trust you to be responsible and respect each other. SlideShare is a large community of people. In order for all of us to live happily on this site together, it implies a certain level of trust. Trust and respect each other!
  2. The SlideShare community is made up people with all types of views and backgrounds. Remember that not everyone always agrees with you. Others might have opinions very different than yours. But be polite and friendly in your interactions. In short, play nice!
  3. While you may not think copyright is a good idea, it is still the law. Please respect it. Do not upload the work of others as your own. Only upload content of others, if they have given you permission (or if they have licensed it under Creative Commons).
  4. SlideShare does not actively screen content being uploaded because we trust you to self-moderate. But we do have a system where users flag accounts or slideshows for violations/abuse and we will step in when we think it’s necessary.
  5. SlideShare is not for pornography, sexually explicit content, violence or anything illegal. If such content is reported from your account, it will be deleted or blocked immediately.
  6. We encourage freedom and free speech but draw the line when it comes to hate speech and harassment. If we think your slideshows, groups or comments are abusive to the site, other users or just in general, your account may be temporarily or permanently blocked.
  7. Predatory behaviour, stalking, harassing other users, invading their privacy, revealing their personal information etc are all something we dislike intensely. Such behaviour is bad for the community and will not be tolerated at all.
  8. Please do not use SlideShare for spam. Please think twice before you send a message or a slideshow to everyone on your contact list, some people may consider it spam. Slideshows or comments deemed as spam will be removed.

In all of these cases if we think it’s necessary we may block or ban the account responsible temporarily or permanently. If your account is blocked permanently, you are forbidden to create any new accounts on SlideShare.

For any questions, kudos or brickbats, please contact me at: or via email: ashwan [at]

5 Responses to “Introducing SlideShare Community Guidelines”

  1. SRINI

    These guidelines are welcome and (sad to say) needed now. I understand that you had all started with an idealistic approach of freedom of expression and self regulation by community to as the emgine and the brakes that would keep the community moving forward constantly. But reality has been of late different and I am glad you have now come up with Guidelines. I hope I do not live to see the day when you would be forced to convert these guidelines into enforceable law on the site.

    I wd like to propose a minor change in #3 which reads as follows.
    “While you may not think copyright is a good idea, it is still the law. Please respect it. Do not upload the work of others as your own. Only upload content of others, if they have given you permission (or if they have licensed it under Creative Commons).”

    Can you add something to the effect that ‘when you draw from some others work, please acknowledge the source even if it is licensed under Creative Commons.’

    Some of us do not seem to think it is necessary but it may be ‘mentioned’ as as a nice thing to do even if not ‘insisted’ upon as per licence requirements. I have seen a gentleman who has been extremely nice to state that he had uploaded stuff he had received on those viral emails and further went on to state that if he wd be told who the original author is he wd acknowledge the fact. Such exemplary behavior needs to be applauded.

    Sorry to make this almost a blog post :) But one final point while on this very important subject that is threatening to make some very nice and respected members leave the community due to mental anguish suffered by baseless, unwarranted and indecent personal attacks by a miniscule minority.

    The community itself can be more vigilant and use the comments flags and other communication artefacts provided to bring in what you cal call self moderation. The venerable Professor Harold Laski had said “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” The community’s one sense of freedom and license, opinion and libel can save the Slideshare authorities a lot of bother and instead of being diverted into policing activities they can focus on developmental activities that would enrich the entire community.

    Thanks again for the guidelines and hope it restores order and decency.

  2. grahairs

    This is a welcome and timely set of Community Guidelines…

    For me, one of the greatly appealing aspects of SlideShare has been its tremendous community spirit, which from my experience is quite uncommon on the net. I know from communication exchanges with many other SS members, that they too greatly value that aspect. However, as some of us know, this has recently suffered a few ‘knocks’: The young ‘child’ (SlideShare community) has been growing and developing very significantly and not surprisingly has thus become more exposed to some of the subversive influences that exist within the big wide world. SlideShare is emerging from its wonderful ‘age of innocence’, which as we all know, is almost impossible to preserve in perpetuity! It’s called ‘growing up’!!

    However, as the growing ‘child’ is gradually allowed a freer reign to venture further, there comes a greater responsibility upon the parent (SS Management Team) to establish that fine balance between protecting it as far as is reasonably possible from the bad influences, while at the same time allowing it the freedom to ‘find it’s way’ and develop its strengths in the face of adversity.

    This set of ‘Community Rules and Guidelines’ should certainly help to preserve our established environment of shared values, mutual respect and trust. No doubt over time they will indeed require some development, but it’s a great start and is to be applauded. Let’s hope that they will need minimal enforcement, and that the teenager won’t need to be grounded! :-)

    It’s appreciated that these matters have been addressed at what must have been a very busy time, what with the W B P Contest and all. So, a big ‘Thanks’ to the SS management team for their work in addressing the various matters!

  3. Schedule

    Best you should edit the page subject title Introducing SlideShare Community Guidelines | SlideShare Blog to more generic for your blog post you write. I loved the blog post however.

  4. chen profesorsky

    Does anyone have experience with slideshare on google hangouts? I can’t seem to find my presentations… :(