On another thread the discussion went into allowing links on the site. I thought I would create a thread on this rather than seeing another one being hijacked.
Current Concerns as I have seen them:
-Do not want to become an advertising avenue
-Do not want to seem to promote any individual or product (other than Nikon)
-Keep spam off
-Broken links/missing pages on old links. Especially for future use.
Benefits I can see allowing SOME links:
-Being able to find products other users enjoy using
-Links to reference items that are helpful
My suggestion: Classify the links, personal, promotional, reference and examples.
Category 1: Personal/Professional
A place on people's profile for their web site is already exists and links to Flickr images are already permitted and nothing feels like anything is lacking or would be added if it were allowed. I don't particularly like the self promotion or the attempt to get business from by people who always end a post with a link with their web site. I say keep that banned. If someone has a reference item on their site (i.e. map of a location for shooting or a DOF calculator) I think that would be ok.
Category 2: Promotional posts/links.
Ban it all.
Category 3: Reference and Examples
If the post is intended to provide a reference or example to help illustrate what is being discussed of the topic, I think it should be allowed. If it is only a shameless plug, (i.e. Promotional) remove it.
Category 4: Products
This seems to be one of the things that could really help. Providing a link to a product that someone likes using would really be helpful. This is not as big of a deal with major company's items, but 3rd party items where it is marketed under multiple names, can be really hard to find with a Google search. Allowing a link to Amazon, etc. would really be helpful. Again, if some company comes on and starts promoting their products, (i.e. Promotional) remove it.
Those are just my thoughts. Admins, if you don't think it is time to discuss this, feel free to remove my post.