Rules of Engagement

Welcome to Blackjack’s Crossing. We pride ourselves on military and academic professionalism and expect you to as well. While candor is essential to critical thinking and professional engagement, discourteous, disrespectful, or inappropriately partisan content will be removed.  Borrowing from the USMC Social Media Standard Operating Procedures:

We do not under any circumstance allow graphic, obscene, explicit or racial comments or submissions nor do we allow comments that are abusive, hateful or intended to defame anyone or any organization.

We do not allow solicitations or advertisements. This includes promotion or endorsement of any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. Similarly, we do not allow attempts to defame or defraud any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency.

We do not allow comments that suggest or encourage illegal activity.

You participate at your own risk, taking personal responsibility for your comments, your username and any information provided.

Lastly, the appearance of external links on this site does not constitute official endorsement on behalf of the U.S. Marine Corps or Department of Defense.

We are a public, open source site for and by national security professionals. What you post here becomes part of your public record. There are legal implications to that statement, as well as PERSEC and prudential concerns. Again, the USMC SOPs are instructive:

Marines / Marine Corps units, Commanders, etc. engaging social media should use their best judgment when posting and responding to topics on social media sites.   For example:

  1. Post only approved content.  Have a method in place to ensure thorough content review before posting – being mindful of OPSEC, FOUO, FOIA, SAPP, etc.
  2. Respond to all necessary topics and comments.  This is an opportunity to leverage the tools for what they are – a means of solid communication.  Avoid the tendency to defend and protect every comment made though.  Given time, social networks normally self correct negative aspects.  Let users explain and work out the issues and ideas being expressed.
  3. Do not stray from negative comments. An open forum comes with certain risk of negativity and to shy from it will tarnish credibility.  However, responses must be vetted / approved and accurately express the Corps’ position without editorializing or straying from the facts.
  4. Allow your fans to fight your battles for you, as well, when possible.  They are, by virtue of their nature, not the official Corps’ responders and, as such, carry with them a different level of credibility.
  5. Replace error or misrepresentations of the Corps with fact not argument, immediately.
  6. Stay in your lane. Do not comment on what you do not know.
  7. No endorsements. Do not use the Marine Corps’ name to promote products, opinions or causes other than those already officially endorsed by the Marine Corps.
  8. Admit mistakes.
  9. If uncertain whether a response is necessary refer to higher for guidance
  10. Only delete or block comments or users when a clear pattern of malicious, derogatory behavior is apparent and they are in violation of the terms of participation.
  11. Keep a log of all malicious material which has been deleted.
  12. All discussion boards and comments must be closely monitored but not over moderated.
  13. Follow all applicable DoD, SecNav and Marine Corps rules and regulations with regard to social media.

If you ever have any questions concerning what is appropriate to post on this site, just ask Dr. Johnson or Dr. Jensen. We also invite you to check out our official Marine Corps University website and the official Command and Staff College website for more information.

For DoD governing policy concerning the use of internet-based capabilities, please see DTM-09-026. We encourage you to also consult the Marine Corps Social Media Policy and Guidelines as well as the Marines Social Media Handbook. For more information about engaging in social media in the Marine Corps, please see Marine Corps Social Media.



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