Channel Policies

In general, local policy and rules for each channel are set by that channel's operators. While we encourage all channel operators to adopt our channel guidelines, if a project or community decides to operate otherwise then we respect their decisions. If you believe that the way in which a particular channel is run contravenes our ground rules or runs counter to the freenode philosophy then you should raise your concerns first with the channel owners, and then with freenode staff who will address cases on an individual basis.

Why can't I join a channel?

There are several things that might prevent you from joining a particular channel. In most cases the server will tell you the reason, but some clients do not correcntly display that information to you, so it's useful to be able to check for yourself. Some of the common causes, in no particular order, are:

If you've not been in the channel in question recently, it's possible that you're affected by a wide-ranging ban, so pay attention to any bans that include * or ? wildcards. Bans that begin with a $ sign are extended ban types; you can see more information about these by sending the /quote HELP EXTBAN command on IRC.

If you find a ban which matches you but you feel wasn't intended to keep you out, then talk to one of the channel operators to see about having it removed. You can find a list of channel operators via the /msg ChanServ ACCESS #channel LIST command.

If you're still stuck, feel free to ask a staff member for help in working out what's preventing you from joining.

Why can't I talk in a channel?

The two most common causes for this are either a quiet mask -- use /mode #channel q to see the list and then check the advice above regarding bans -- or mode +m, which prevents anyone who isn't voiced from talking. If you're still unsure, again, feel free to ask staff for help in working out what the problem might be.