To Newcomers and All Others

Welcome and A Happy and Healthy New Year to all!

Saul has asked me to post these guidelines the first of each month.

Today, when first I started reviewing this post, it was still the kalends or calends, that is, the first day of the month as the Romans called it. In Roman times calends was also the day accounts were settled and debts were collected as recorded in the calendarium or calendar. The latter term was adopted into English in the 13th century via French. Note that until fairly recent times we did like the Romans and paid our bills (rent, phone, electricity, gas) on the first of the month. That changed with the digital revolution and digital record keeping, personal computers and the internet. Nowadays all my bills are due on different dates.

January, named after Janus (Ianuarius), the god of beginnings and transitions, is of Roman origin as is our timekeeping. It started with the Roman calendar, introduced 713 BCE which had only 10 months. This solar
calendar was reformed by Julius Caesar in 45 BCE to add leap years and two months for a total of 365.25 days. It was tweaked further by the Roman Catholic Pope Gregory XIII in 1582, spacing leap years to make the average year 365.2425 days long, approximating the 365.2422-day tropical year or solar year that is determined by the Earth’s revolution around the Sun. Originally adopted by only Catholic countries, it is now universally used.

Can you imagine the confusion and waste of time if we did not agree on worldwide common timekeeping? Commerce, transportation and stock trading would be time-consuming and expensive, even with time conversion apps. By the time I get to post this, it will be 2 January 2020 using the Gregorian calendar, 5 Tevet AM 5780 (Anno Mundi, ”in the year of the world”) using the Hebrew lunisolar calendar, 6 Jumada al-awwal, 1441 AH (Anno Hegirae, “in the year of the Hijra”) using the Muslim lunar calendar. It is good that most of the non-Gregorian calendars are now predominantly used for religious purposes. For a full list of calendars, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_calendars, especially the section on calendaring and timekeeping standards.

Keeping standards for this board is equally important. Below is a list for all, not only newbies. Since August I had included “To find out if a stock has already been discussed” to avoid these recurring non-contributory threads. Today I have included “How to send an EMAIL off-board.” I will propose to Saul and all assistant board managers if it is not possible to incorporate one of the posts on the right under “Announcements” and to be able to add this post For Newcomers. That should make it easier for anyone to refer a newcomer to it. Any suggestions are welcome, just send me an email.

The Usual Monthly Sermon

Our board has the singular focus of analyzing and discussing individual, rapidly growing, disruptive companies. That means that certain topics and basic questions that are acceptable on other boards are not appropriate here. Our board has grown tremendously in recent years, and Saul has had to establish rules, published every Monday morning, to keep off-topic and non-contributing posts to a minimum. He has also engaged several assistant board managers, who will remind posters when they veer off topic, and stop off-topic threads from continuing. The names of the Assistant Board Managers, and the DO’S and DONT’S for this board are found here:

Monday Morning Rules of the Board:
Short version: https://discussion.fool.com/monday-morning-rules-of-the-board-34…
Long version: https://discussion.fool.com/monday-morning-rules-of-the-board-34…

Please remember that these ARE the rules of the board. If you are unhappy with them, or feel that they are too restrictive for you, no one is keeping you on the board. You can leave whenever you want. You should know though that this board has been very successful, and is a real treasure, for a great number of people.

To profit most from this highly focused board, we suggest reviewing the links below to Saul’s investing approach and philosophy, especially the KnowledgeBase many of us have read and reread several times. The knowledge contained therein is priceless, and for many of us here, it has been literally life-changing. Since this board has attracted many well-informed, analytical minds, including industry insiders, we also found a review of several months worth of prior posts extremely helpful. All of this valuable information is given generously and freely to help us be better investors.

An Introduction to Saul’s Investing Philosophy

A superb introduction to Saul’s development as an investor is his letter to his daughter, followed by the first five references, posted on the right panel on any post on this board, under “Announcements.” If the announcements panel does not show up on the right, click “unthreaded” and it will. You can shift back to “threaded” and the panel should remain, at least until next time.

In addition, Saul’s End of Month Summaries provide insight into each of his investing decisions. Several other investors provide extremely useful end of month summaries as well.

  1. An investing primer for my daughter, https://discussion.fool.com/an-investing-primer-for-my-daughter-…

  2. KnowledgeBase in three parts, is Saul’s compilation of his basic investing philosophy:
    Part 1 - https://discussion.fool.com/knowledgebase-newly-revised-part-1-3…
    Part 2 - https://discussion.fool.com/knowledgebase-newly-revised-part-2-3…
    Part 3 - https://discussion.fool.com/knowledgebase-newly-revised-part-3-3…

Saul has picked several of his classic posts to aid you. Here they are:

  1. How I pick a company to invest in.
    https://discussion.fool.com/how-i-pick-a-company-to-invest-in-33…

  2. Why my investing criteria have changed.
    https://discussion.fool.com/why-my-investing-criteria-have-chang…

  3. Why it Really is Different – (SaaS companies and subscription software).
    https://discussion.fool.com/oh-this-time-it8217s-different-33123…

  4. Category Crushers, https://discussion.fool.com/category-crushers-and-my-portfolio-3…

  5. Here is a recent example of how Saul evaluates and follows a stock:
    part 1, https://discussion.fool.com/zscaler-a-deep-dive-into-my-notes-pa…

part 2, https://discussion.fool.com/zscaler-a-deep-dive-into-my-notes-pa…
You will also find many, many excellent deep dives by other investors on the board.

  1. Saul’s End of Month Portfolio Summaries, https://docs.google.com/document/d/1yF_lLGs3pI4SPcYOfIvpO5FY…

1.</> Examples of How to Present and Discuss Stocks

We are trying to keep our discussions of rapidly growing, disruptive companies as advanced and detailed as possible. We encourage you to chime in, provided your comments are on-topic and within the guidelines outlined in the Rules of the Board. Tossing out a simple “What do you think about XYZ” onto this board won’t cut it. You have to tell us about the company, what it does, and why you like it. Here are a few examples of SaaS companies as well as other fast-growing companies currently not the focus of this board presented in a format that will generate lots of engagement:

• Discussion of SaaS-type companies currently the focus of this board:

Introductions to PagerDuty (PD), https://discussion.fool.com/pagerdutypd-a-deep-dive-34191497.asp…, and Slack (WORK) IPO, https://discussion.fool.com/slack-ipo-a-first-look-34208321.aspx…

Earnings Follow-up Notes of Smartsheets (SMAR), https://discussion.fool.com/smar-q1-34224157.aspx?sort=whole#342…, and MongoDB (MDB), https://discussion.fool.com/mdb-quick-and-dirty-34223901.aspx?so…

• Fast-growing companies not currently the focus of this board but welcome if presented as follows:

Introduction to Stitch Fix (SFIX), https://discussion.fool.com/nov17-ipo-company-wstrong-performanc…, and CarGurus (CARG), https://discussion.fool.com/cargurus-carg-a-2017-ipo-winner-3401…

Earnings Follow-up Notes of Stitch Fix (SFIX), https://discussion.fool.com/stitch-fix-up-24-after-q3-results-34…, and Carvana (CVNA), https://discussion.fool.com/my-ongoing-case-for-cavana-34213744…

2. How to find out if a stock has already been discussed here, for example TTD, just pull up DuckDuckGo or Google search, enter TTD Saul’s site:fool.com or TTD. “Saul’s Investing Discussions” site:fool.com

3. How to send an EMAIL off-board
Hit the “post reply” button, un-check the box "Post this Reply to the Boards,” then check the box "E-mail this Reply to the author.” The boxes are beneath the text field. Note that when you send a private reply like that, the other person will then have your e-mail address.

4. If you are an investing novice and you are looking for basic information, we have prepared a list of good references for you. It is posted on another board so as to not clutter up this board. I have linked to it here: https://discussion.fool.com/for-investing-novices-34193680.aspx

I hope that this was of help,

I. M. Young, Assistant Board Manager

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