Business and Commercial Members FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What can I post from my business account? Can I talk about my business?

You can do the following:

  • Answer questions about your business when those questions have already been posed in a thread by a member not affiliated with your business. Example: "Does Company XYZ offer MCAT prep services?" In this case, you can answer by indicating that yes, your company does offer these services or you can answer in the negative if you don't offer the services.

  • Answer questions about your area of expertise without directly promoting your business. Example: "Should I study physics for the MCAT?" In this case, you can answer by explaining that yes, the MCAT includes physics and most students need to review at least a few basic principles (and so on). You may NOT suggest that students buy your product or refer them to your website when answering this type of question.

Can I upload my business logo as my avatar?

Identified vendors may use their logo as their avatar.

Can I link to my business in my signature?

Signature links are supported for Sponsors only. If you place these customizations on your account, they will be removed and your account may be banned.

SDN Sponsors may include a single link in their signature line. For more information on becoming an SDN sponsor, please email [email protected] or visit our list of available sponsorships.

Signatures may not include any other forms of advertising, including special offers, business descriptions or images. Signature font size must be 15 points or less.

Can I create threads and posts to promote my business?

In the Advising Services & Discounts and Test Prep Services & Discounts area, identified Vendors and Sponsors may post a thread to promote their services.

Sponsors may also post a thread for their business or service in the Classifieds forum.

You CANNOT create threads in other areas just to promote your products and/or services. You may also not create posts in random, unrelated threads promoting your business. Doing either of these things will result in your account being banned permanently.

What else is a violation of the advertising policy?

We take our "no advertising" policy very seriously at SDN. Overt advertising on our forums will not be tolerated outside of the Advising Services & Discounts and Test Prep Services & Discounts, and Classifieds forums.

We are also very serious about prohibiting and preventing "stealth advertising." Examples include:

  • Linking to your products in ANY form in a post, unless asked a direct question about your product(s) by a member.
  • Creating accounts that LOOK unaffiliated with your business (such as posing as a student or faculty member) that promote your business: "Check out Company XYZ - they are awesome!"
  • Creating accounts that LOOK unaffiliated with your business to criticize or spread negative feedback about your competitors.
  • Paying or incentivizing students or other individuals to promote your business through forum posts.
  • Posing as one of your competitors or adopting a similar name to spread misinformation or otherwise harm the reputation of your competitor.
  • Asking a member to send you a conversation message - "PM me for more info"

Stealth advertising will result in an IMMEDIATE PERMANENT BAN from our forums with no ability for your business to re-register. It will also result in your permanent withdrawal from consideration or loss of status as an SDN Sponsor.

What are the Classifieds? Can I post there?

The SDN Classifieds forums can be used to advertise your products and services. You can post a SINGLE advertisement thread per product or service.

Sponsors are able to post in the Classifieds. Vendors must become a Verified Member in order to post in the Classifieds.

I am developing a new product or service and I want to survey students to get feedback. Can I do that?

Feedback surveys are ONLY permitted in the Advising Services & Discounts and Test Prep Services & Discounts areas.

Surveys must be completed on a third-party site and links to the site must clearly state that information entered on the survey is subject to the third-party terms of service, not the SDN terms of service.

I am giving away free promotional products/services. Where can I tell students about this?

You may use the Advising Services & Discounts and Test Prep Services & Discounts forums for this purpose.

My business is non-profit. Can I promote it?

The same rules apply to all businesses, regardless of profit status. We offer a special non-profit section in the SDN Classifieds forums.

Someone has posted something negative about my business. I would like SDN to remove it.

We don't get involved in these types of disputes. You are free to use your forum account to respond to negative feedback as long as you abide by the guidelines in the Forum Usage Policy and this document. If you feel your business has been victimized by INCORRECT information, you should consult your legal counsel for guidance.

Someone has posted something that violates my copyright.

If you feel someone has violated your copyright, use the "report" link on the post to alert our moderator staff. If the situation is not resolved to your satisfaction, you may submit a DMCA notice.

Don't see your question? Get Help