I. First and Done
A. Answers should be complete and thorough. They should predict the next logical question and provide useful information to answer it. For example, if a user is requesting help with inserting a custom scrollbar, the next logical question would be how to tell what part of the override applies to what part of the scrollbar. To answer this, you should mention the howto tutorial on custom scrollbars, which contains a diagram to help them with this. The next logical question after that would be how to know what hexadecimal color code to use to get their desired color. For this you would provide a link to the hexadecimal color code chart.
B. If a user opens a request for customizing their journal, you should always review their current overrides for errors that can cause problems later on. Just because a set of overrides is "working" does not mean it is working well or properly. Extremely poorly merged overrides should be corrected. Minor errors in merging, such as not removing the opening and closing html comment tags (<!-- and -->) when combining overrides are perfectly acceptable to leave in place. While not technically correct, it may help the user mark the beginning and ending of certain overrides, so there is no reason that this, by itself, should be corrected.
C. First and done means the first time a user comes to us they receive all the help they could possibly need, as well as links to resources to help them in the future. This means that the first time a user comes to us about a particular type of customization will be the last time a user needs to come to us on that topic and possibly others.
II. Testing Overrides - screened volunteers
Before submitting your answer, test all overrides you are giving. Even if its a simple override its possible to leave something out that may cause it to not work properly, or at all. If you are giving step by step instructions then follow them yourself, exactly. Make sure the instructions make sense and give the expected result.
III. Overrides vs. Styles
A. When a paid user asks for an effect that is best applied to all four page views (custom scrollbar, hover effect, background image, etc.) it is generally best to use a GLOBAL_HEAD override if they are not currently using any custom styles. This will allow the effect to be applied to all four page views easily without having to create four new styles and add the information to each custom style.
B. When a paid user asks for an effect that is not possible via overrides they will need to be walked through creating a custom style and exactly where in their new style to insert the code necessary to create the effect.
C. That said, we should refrain from creating entire styles for users. They should be told, politely, that such extensive customization is outside the realm of customization support. This should be done by a supporthelp priv; they have more experience with what, exactly, is outside the realm of customization support.
IV. Bandwidth Theft & Copyright Violation
A. FAQ #130- Does LiveJournal host images? has been changed to include a paragraph designed to deter bandwidth theft. There are a couple of other things we can do to discourage bandwidth theft.
B. If a user asks for another user's overrides or style, do NOT simply copy and pastes over the other user's overrides into an answer. You will need to remove any information unique to that user, such as the URL to their background image. Copying over the answer, including the background image, encourages that user to commit bandwidth theft and possibly copyright infringement. You will, also, need to note that they will need to insert the URL of their own background image.
C. If you notice in the course of the request that a user may be committing bandwidth theft, you may wish to emphasize that the image needs to be uploaded to their own server. However, there is no need to try and guess whether a user is committing bandwidth theft, as long as FAQ# 130 is linked somewhere in your answer. This allows us the best of both worlds: not having to try and guess if each user has permission to load their image from that location and still letting them know they need to upload their images to their own server.
V. Requesting Reviews
A. All screened volunteers, including those with interim privs, should request periodic reviews.
B. Even if the majority of your answers are approved, and you feel you have a good grasp on what changes you need to make to your answers when you aren't approved, there can often be minor details that don't prevent an answer from being approved but can greatly increase your answer quality overall and move you closer to one of the three levels of privs.
C. Reviews also help supporthelp privs notice which volunteers are ready for some level of privs. There are hundreds of screened answers posted every day and it can sometimes become difficult to keep up with a single volunteer's current skill level.
D. If, after you receive a review, you are asked to request another one in a certain amount of time, it is very important that you do so. Again, there are a large number of screened volunteers in proportion to the number of supporthelp privs and it is sometimes difficult for them to keep up with who they felt needed another review soon.