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BFI online community guidelines

In brief

The BFI values and actively encourages online conversation and debate. We welcome comments on third-party platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, and moderate contributions according to the community guidelines outlined below.

Our aim is to engage all our users in a meaningful and direct way, and to provide a space for participants to share their knowledge and appreciation of the moving image.


The BFI’s social media team monitors all comments on the BFI’s Facebook pages, YouTube channels and all Twitter messages containing BFI-related keywords.

What type of contributions do we invite?

  • Personal views and thoughts.
  • Comments intended to stimulate conversation or discussion.
  • Constructive criticism/feedback about the BFI and its activities.
  • Contextualised links to relevant content on and third-party sites.

What type of contributions will be removed?

  • Spam.
  • Irrelevant and uncontextualised promotional messages.
  • Inappropriate comments about individuals, including BFI members of staff.
  • Hate-speech targeted at people and communities on the basis of race, gender, sexuality, disability and other identity traits.
  • Persistent misrepresentation of the BFI and members of staff.
  • Unmarked spoilers about plot developments in a film, television or otherwise moving-image film. Please prefix your comment with a spoiler alert.
  • Identical or similar comments contributed more than once.

Note: the BFI retains the right to distinguish between constructive criticism and offensive or harmful content.

Responding to questions

Our commitment is to respond to all questions received through social media quickly and transparently. Comments will be forwarded on to relevant colleagues, who aim to provide a response within 24 hours. A holding statement will be given where responding fully takes more time.

You can also submit questions directly through our contact forms.

Pre-moderated comments

In certain cases, comments will be moderated before appearing on third-party platforms (e.g. YouTube). This is to ensure a safe environment for community members, where a subject is particularly sensitive or contentious. Comments may also be pre-moderated during periods of high activity, where resources are limited.

Terminating comment threads

In certain cases, commenting will be disabled. For example, on a YouTube video or news article that has sparked hate-speech or other forms of abusive behaviour. This is to encourage focused and positive conversations within our community spaces and to maintain a safe environment for all involved.

Banning community members

Community members who continue to disregard the above guidelines after receiving a written warning will be banned from contributing to our site and third-party profiles. They will receive an email or message via social media explaining the reasons for this decision.


We advise that you never reveal any personal information about yourself or others, such as your telephone number, postal or email address, or any other details that could allow you to be identified.


You may not submit or share any defamatory or illegal material on and our social media profiles. This includes text and any type of media.

Contributing material with the intention of committing or promoting illegal acts is not permitted.

You agree to submit contributions which are your own original work. You must not violate, plagiarise, or infringe any copyright, trade mark, trade secrets, privacy and publicity, personal or proprietary rights.

If you submit a contribution, you agree to allow the BFI to use the material in your contribution in any way it may reasonably choose on a free-of-charge basis in any media throughout the world. Any contributions you make may be reviewed, edited and/or removed.

Any copyright in your contribution will remain with you and this permission is not exclusive, so you can continue to use the material you contribute in any way, including allowing others to use it.

You agree not to impersonate a third party or use inappropriate (i.e. vulgar, offensive etc) user names.

If you submit or share offensive or inappropriate content anywhere on or otherwise engage in any disruptive behaviour, and the BFI considers such behaviour to be serious and/or repeated, we may use whatever information available about you to stop any further such infringements. This may include informing relevant third parties such as your employer, school or email provider about the infringement(s).

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