The T&Cs state “You may link to specific URLs (web site addresses) in your contributions where these provide essential background reading. However, you must not link to advertising or sites that might cause offense to other users of the Website.” Whenever a link is added, the post will go for moderation so the link can be checked except in the first two cases below.
Links to Patient
These can be freely posted without moderation if you want to guide users to more information on conditions or medicines such as leaflets or PatientPlus articles for more detailed information. There is also the Wellbeing section http://www.patient.info/wellbeing where there may be recent articles about the condition or topic. Another use of posting links from Patient is if you wish to direct users to self help groups. For example if you post a direct link to https://www.coeliac.org.uk/ this will be delayed while awaiting moderation which can be a few days if over a weekend or holiday period. If you link to http://www.patient.info/support/coeliac-uk this will not go for moderation and will appear on the site immediately.
Links within the forums site
You can post links to other discussions if you think a user may benefit from reading another thread. For example, if you have posted your experience and rather than type it all again in another discussion you can just post a “See my story here...” comment and link to the relevant discussion/post. Another case is if a discussion has been posted in the wrong area or where topics overlap. Posting the link to the correct/another Group may help the user get more relevant replies or see other discussions. For example if a discussion about citalopram has been posted in the depression group the user can be guided to http://www.patient.info/forums/discuss/browse/citalopram-2618. Other cases are where a user may not know where to find information so direct links to the group/discussion can be used rather than trying to explain how to find the information.
See FAQ here on how to do this.
You can post links to any other website which will go for moderation. They will be approved as long as the link is to a reputable website and is relevant to the discussion. If a link is included to another web site but there is an equivalent or better article on Patient then we may edit the link to go to our article. If you just want to mention a web site 'in passing' such as Amazon just simply say Amazon (or the website's recognised name).
Links that will not be approved.
Below are examples of links we will not approve with further information where necessary.
Any advertising or spam/offensive links.
We will also not allow “pushing” of products by multiple posting of the product name with or without links. Stating the product name once if relevant to the discussion is acceptable. If a user is interested in info on a specific product this info can be exchanged using the Private Message service as required or the user can use a search engine to find the info.
Links to private or commercial clinics etc.
If any company or clinic wishes to be included on Patient or sponsor a forum group then see http://www.patient.info/adhow.
Requests for users to take part in surveys/research/television programmes etc and petition links.
For anyone wishing to post these - we recommend you post directly onto our Facebook page wall (http://www.facebook.com/patient) or if you use Twitter, you can tweet details to us (https://twitter.com/patient) and we can retweet your message. For media companies there are media contact details here http://www.patient.info/media-enquiries.
Links to blogs
As there are so many blogs we cannot allow links to these in the forums. Similar to above, requests for blog entries on Patient should be directed to Facebook/Twitter.
Links to other forums
Generally we do not publish links to competitive forum sites but these are on a case by case basis. For example if there is a specific forum site for a condition that would be useful to patients we will allow them.
Time sensitive links
Linking to courses/events which are time sensitive are better being exchanged via the Private Message service. This is so they do not get held up for moderation and also so there are no “dead” links left once the event has finished.
Discussions and or replies that could be considered as no more than legitimising but ultimately fraudulent vehicles for the link or links they contain.
Discussions and or replies that comprise solely or of little more than a link or links
A link on its own cannot provide "essential background reading".
Links formatted in such a way as to bypass or attempt to bypass Moderation
A legitimate link should never need to be formatted in a manner designed to bypass or attempt to bypass the moderation process.
The information above is a guide but we reserve the right to remove any links if they are deemed inappropriate.