Community Guidelines

General guidelines

Web of Trust (WOT) is a worldwide community of millions of users who are dedicated to building a safer and more trustworthy web. These guidelines will help you get the best out of working together with the community.

Be tolerant with others' opinions. WOT is a multicultural community where religions, politics and world views may vary. Please keep this in mind when rating, commenting, and interacting with other users and site owners.

Be respectful. Treat others in a civil manner and use proper language when interacting with others. Please do not post anything unlawful, defamatory, offensive, insulting, profane or vulgar.

Be truthful. Ratings and comments must represent your own opinion and/or experience of a website. Try to be as objective as possible and avoid rating sites based on generalization. Provide evidence to support your rating when possible. Please identify yourself as the owner of a website or working for a company owning a site if you are commenting on it.

Remember your responsibility. Every member is responsible for their own ratings and comments. Ratings can especially affect small businesses and in some cases, people’s lives, so try to be reasonable and do not give a rating without a good reason. Comments that are given without basis can also have legal consequences, depending on your country’s laws.

Language of communication. The preferred language on the forum is English, unless otherwise indicated in a subforum. While posting comments on the scorecards, feel free to use English or the same language as the site is available in. However, if you wish to contact WOT, please use English in your messages.

Be responsive. Site owners are given an option to claim their site, contact users directly through their user boards, and post an evaluation request on the forum if they want their site's reputation to be evaluated. Please be responsive to site owners' requests and help us keep the reputations up to date and accurate by reviewing your ratings and comments to make sure they are still in accordance with your current opinion.

Zero tolerance for manipulation. WOT does not tolerate manipulation and a user account can be banned without prior notice if such behavior is detected. This includes creating more than one user account, accepting compensation for ratings, paying people to rate sites, or using other unethical ways to manipulate ratings.

Third party sources. If your rating is based on a blacklist - state the source with a link and day you found it.

Best practices for commenting

  • Comments should be descriptive and give at least one reason. “Good site” is not a good comment.

  • Scorecard comments are not a place to share general opinions about a topic, and should be strictly about your own experience with the website.

  • Do not post links to competitors or similar websites in your comment.

  • Keep your comments brief and to the point.

  • Try not to recycle the same comments for multiple websites, as each should describe the commented site as well as possible.

Forum guidelines

Setup:

  • Register only one account, multiple accounts will be considered manipulation and be banned.

  • Keep your profile picture family friendly and do NOT use the WOT logo as your profile picture.

  • Signatures can be set up in your profile, please limit them to 4 lines.

  • Live links are not permitted in signatures. Instead, you can use simple domain names alongside a message that you have a link on your profile page.

General:

  • When starting a new thread, use a short, informative subject line.

  • Before posting a question on the forum, please look for the answer in the WOT Wiki, FAQ , or our Support section. Your question may already be answered there.

  • Stay on topic: Before replying to a forum post, read the thread subject and the original post to make sure your comment is relevant.

  • Try not to post duplicate threads.

  • Periodically review your previous postings to ensure that the information is still accurate.

  • All kinds of spamming are prohibited: Remember that off-topic comments are considered spam and will be deleted without warning.

  • Help site owners: Site owners can post on the forum if they want their site's reputation to be evaluated. Please be friendly and constructive in your feedback.

  • Protect your privacy: Do not share any personal information on the forum or in your signature.

  • Please do not leave 1-word comments.

Please do not post live links when referencing a website or page that's not part of mywot.com. Use simple domain names in a format like this:

  • example.com

  • 127.0.0.1

If you are referencing a URL, change the HTTP to HXXP. For example:

  • hxxp://www.bad-malware-site.com/images/phish/virus.html

  • hxxp://127.0.0.1/exp/botnet/phish.php

We rely on our registered community members and volunteer moderators to report content that violates these guidelines through the “Flag” function on all scorecards as well as on the forum. Register here to join the community.

If you have any constructive suggestions on how we could improve the WOT system, please share them with us.

Website owner guidelines

Confirming your site's ownership, you become part of a huge community of site owners. Below you will find information about what rules should be observed here.

Be aware of blacklists. In addition to user ratings, WOT uses several trusted sources when calculating a site's reputation. You can see if your site appears on a blacklist by going to your scorecard and looking under "Information from third-party sources". To remove your site from a blacklist, you need to deal with it directly with the list in question.

Familiarize yourself with how WOT works. We are occasionally contacted by site owners who believe that competitors are slandering their reputation, or that the system is otherwise manipulated. Almost always those claims are false. Before making any claims, please study how the system works. Read comments left on your website's scorecard and think about what the real reasons behind your site's reputation could be. If you have any questions, start by reading our FAQ where some of them may already be answered.

A good reputation has to be earned, it cannot be bought. Never compensate anyone for improving your site’s reputation. Moreover, if you receive an offer to improve your site's reputation, don’t trust it, it's a scam and please report it to us.

Do not use WOT to promote your website. Do not use promotional material of any kind on WOT. We reserve the right to reject any material used for promotional purposes.

Zero tolerance for manipulation. WOT’s algorithm can detect any unusual behavior and act accordingly. We recommend not requesting positive ratings with other site owners as this can hurt your site. We also remind you that trading positive ratings is a form of compensation and is strictly forbidden.

Ownership verification. We do recommend verifying the ownership of your website in order to get all the site owner’s privileges. If you own an http site, there are two ways to verify ownership - through “My sites” tab in your profile or by going to your site’s scorecard and follow the “Click here if you own this site” link under the site’s description. However if you own an https site please contact us directly for personalized guidelines.

Best Practices

  • Treat your site's reputation rating as customer feedback

  • Your site’s reputation can provide valuable feedback. Apply customer service practices to reward praise and find opportunities to win back your critics. Even if the user doesn't change his/her mind, a proactive and positive approach to your site’s reputation makes a public statement about the kind of business you're running. *It is advisable to check up on your site's reputation from time to time.

  • Act professional & keep replies simple

  • Resist the urge to write angry or emotional responses to negative comments. This kind of response can harm your reputation. Ideal responses are polite, professional and straight to the point. Tailor your response to the exact problem that the reviewer is writing about and explain how you plan to work on it. By doing so, you can reassure them that your business values feedback and cares about improving the user's experience.

  • Work together with the community

  • If you are concerned with your website’s reputation, read these instructions on what you can do. If you claim your site and post a reputation evaluation request on the forum, remember to give a clear description, follow the discussion and listen to what the community has to say. Be active and respond to any questions.

  • Ensure you have privacy policy in place

  • If your site is commercial-based and you do not have a privacy / cookie policy, it is advised that you install one. Privacy policy increases website's trustworthiness and it is a common practice to have one on a website. You can find more information in the WOT Wiki:

Personally Identifiable Information - PII

Privacy Policy