In some communities, not understanding the guidelines can have consquences. As an example, on the Stack Exchange network, questions can be down voted and closed. Repeat this a few times and the user can't ask new questions. From the community's perspective a troublemaker has been dealt with. From the new user's perspective, this community is stuck up and unwilling to help the new guy.
How can new members be encouraged to read (or at least skim) these guidelines prior to jumping in feet first?