Community Guidelines and Online Safety

To help the community run as smoothly as possible and create a safe atmosphere that encourages participants to honestly share their feelings and experiences, it is essential to have a clear set of community guidelines rules.

Just like face-to-face SMART Recovery meetings, our online community has a set of guidelines in place to ensure the environment is a safe and welcoming place for participants to share and view information.

We request that all members comply with the following community guidelines to ensure everyone feels comfortable and benefits from being here. Safety and respect are important to all of us.

Community Guidelines

Be friendly and get involved – Welcome new members, share your tips or show others how to use the website. If you are a new member, make sure to introduce yourself – our community is waiting for you.

Maintain confidentiality of yourself and others – We recommend you use only your first name or a pseudonym in your username and that you don’t post any information that may identify you or anyone else. Don’t add your address, email address or phone number. Don’t post any personal information that you would not be comfortable sharing with a stranger.

Respect others’ points of view – even if you don’t agree. Don’t judge. 

  • Putting down or making fun of other users.
  • Giving advice that’s unhelpful or dangerous.
  • Graphic details of self-harm or suicide.
  • Mentioning names of particular medications.
  • No angry, homophobic, racist or sexist comments.
  • Plugging your own business.
  • And lastly, anything that could breach someone’s privacy.

Do not engage in threatening behaviour.

Stay on topic. When creating a new discussion thread, give a clear topic title and put your post in the appropriate category. Keep your posts short and to the point. When contributing to an existing discussion, try to stay ‘on topic’. If you’ve got something to say that doesn’t relate to the topic you’re posting in, then just start a new one.

If you see something you don’t like, report it and let us know why. All posts are monitored to make sure you feel safe. That means there’s some posts we may choose to edit or remove.



Because isolation is a major aspect of addictive behaviour, meeting other participants and volunteers through SMART Recovery can be a benefit of participation. We encourage participants to consider socialising with others. SMART Recovery endeavours to provide a comfortable environment at our meetings and online community. But stay safe online.

Please be cautious in your social interactions. SMART Recovery cannot control the environment outside of its meetings and online activities. Here are some suggested safeguards to keep your involvement with our online community safe and helpful:

Avoid sharing your phone number or address or identifying information (home, college or work) with anyone.

If someone you don’t know contacts you out of the blue, it’s wise to careful – you’re not obliged to respond to the individual. If the contact seems inappropriate to you, use the “Contact Us” button at the bottom of every community page to report the inappropriate behaviour.

If you see a person posting their email address on the message board asking for contact, remember there is no guarantee that this is a safe person for you to be in contact with. Please hit the report this post button. Posting your email address in the forums is actually against the “Terms of Service” for SMART Recovery.

It is advisable to limit any private contact to people who are known and established online participants in very stable recovery.

If you are in any doubt as to who is safe and need to talk to someone in private, the SMART online Admins are here to assist and happy to do so.

If you get nuisance private messages, please inform the Admins by using the “Contact Us” at the bottom of every page.

If you get a nuisance message in online meetings, please private message the meeting Facilitator and include a copy of the message.

Please arrive at online meetings fully able to participate. And please try to interact using voice functionality and not just text.

As with any online community, every effort is made to ensure the safety of participants – we also rely on our participants to use wisdom and be cautious.

If ever in doubt, please report suspicious activity.

We are confident that there is much to be gained from joining the SMART Recovery program and your online activities on this site.

Welcome to our community.