Thanks for the info!First, I'd like to extend a warm welcome to Brothers Of The Leaf.
Here are a few pointers to hopefully allow you to make the most of your stay.
- Head on over to the Introductions Forum and tell us a bit about yourself. Where you're from, how long you've been smoking, favorite sticks and what brought you here are all good starting points for an intro.
- Allow me to introduce you to the admins and moderators -the guys who make this place work: Eric, David, Chuck, Angry Bill and myself - Brent. If you have a question about how this place runs, any of us are more than willing to help. If you've had an account here in the past but are unable to access it now, there are several reasons this may have happened, but unfortunately there is no way to recover the account, so feel free to create a new id for yourself.
- Another great resource if you need help is to slide by the BoM Forum (Brother of the Month). These guys are nominated and voted on each month by the brotherhood and exemplify the true spirit of BOTL. They're always willing to help guide new posters in any way needed so don't hesitate to send them a message. Also, if you come across a term or acronym you're not familiar with, check out the Cigar Acronyms thread for an explanation.
- If you're here looking to buy, sell and trade cigars, the best way as a new member to do this is to check out the Newbie Sampler Thread. In here, you'll be paired with a BOTL veteran and be able to arrange a trade for cigars, either with money or cigars of your own. Being that you're the new member, you'll be expected to send your end first. This is a great way to meet an experienced BOTL as well as start earning yourself some trader rating. It's very important to leave trader ratings when buying, selling or trading cigars - so please remember to do so.
- As for accessing the cigar marketplace, there are some requirements that you'll have to meet before you are allowed access, so be patient. Starting threads looking to buy (ISO's) or sell cigars outside of the marketplace is bad form and will not be permitted. Another thing to keep in mind is - certain online payment services do NOT permit transactions that are tobacco related, and accordingly are filtered by the board. If using these privately, make sure you know the person you're dealing with AND leave out any mention of cigars, tobacco, bands, or anything else that could be viewed as such. Numerous members have had their accounts frozen by the processor, so use your discretion.
- After you've met some brothers, maybe check out the BOTL Social Groups (Note: Being reworked). Here you'll find subgroups based on things like your location, religion, brand of choice, military service and even mobile phone platform - just to name a few. Also, if you're interested, check out the Debate Room and NSFW (not suitable for work) forums which you have to opt in to.
- A thread that should be mandatory reading for every new poster is the one that talks about Being Fiscally Responsible. Cigars can become an expensive hobby, especially if you're chasing the limited releases that seem to come out every week. As a brotherhood, we care about the wellbeing of our fellow members and don't want to see them dig themselves in to a hole.
- Yet another great thread to become familiar with (especially if you're interested in Cuban Cigars as an American citizen) is the one entitled Known Risks. One of the main rules here on botl.org is that sources for Cuban Cigars are not permitted for discussion on the forum. Please, don't ask for them, don't ask about them.
- Now that we've established how to buy cigars, you'll need a place to store them. Head over to the Humidor section for all kinds of information and tips on everything from desktops and cabinets to beads, travel cases, lighters and cutters.
- Once you're all set up there, you'll need to stock up. A great way to do that is by checking out some of our Site Sponsors. All of the companies here help to support the forum and are dedicated to providing the highest level of service to BOTLs, so please consider them for your purchases. When you make your purchases, feel free to show off your goodies in our catch all threads for your latest purchases, both Non Cuban and Cuban Cigars
- So it's time to smoke your cigars now. Feel free to let us know what you're smoking in the Today's Smoke thread - or, if you want to go in to some more detail, post a full review of your experience in our Cigar Reviews section. Have a look at some of the past reviews to see how it's done. When posting, please take note of the Review Guidelines, especially with regard to directing traffic away from the site. This applies not only to reviews but things such as blog posts and contests also.
- Since we've got you smoking, you might as well do it with some other fine folks. Check out the upcoming Events, Herfs and Meetups to see if there's anything in your area and please try to join us.
- When you know your way around the board like a crafty vet and think you have an idea that could improve it, post over in the Cigar Box thread and see what the rest of the brothers think. Also, any site issues or problems can be reported in the BOTL.org Discussion area. If you happen to come across a post that is offensive or inappropriate, please use the report function (location of report button now under signatures to bring it to the attention of the moderators and admins. Also if you're looking for a specific topic or member, try using our Search Function. This is also helpful if you're going to start a new thread about some of the more basic aspects of our hobby, which have likely been discussed a number of times in the past (things like keeping the cello on your sticks, what kind of humidor/humidification do I need, what's better - cc or nc,, what's a good 'budget' stick, etc)
- Not to solicit, as BOTL has always been a free board, but there are certainly costs associated with running it. If you feel like you've gained from your membership here once you've gained access to the marketplace with the requirements I mentioned above, and wish to donate a few bucks, The 2017 Donations Thread will show you how to make a contribution. There's a $10 minimum, but you'll get a cool 'donor' tag under your username and in the process help to make the board stay the way it is (ie without ads all over the place).
Beyond all that, please remember that the letters BOTL stand for Brothers Of The Leaf. This is not the place for drama, trolling, profiteering, begging or expecting to be showered with free cigars. Although your opinions may differ from those of your fellow brothers from time to time, we expect that you handle these issues with respect. For further detail on this topic, please check out this post by Craig Mac which will tell you a bit about how our brotherhood works.
I thank you for reading, and hope you enjoy your stay at the finest cigar community on the internet. :welcome: