American Association of the Deaf-Blind

A New Beginning

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AADB-L List Guidelines and Rules

Posted: Monday, January 9, 2012

We have received numerous requests to control some of the dialogue on the AADB-L list. Many people have reported that they avoid posting their opinions because they would rather not be attacked by others through inflammatory and personal emails. So we have agreed to exert more control over the content of the list. While some might see this as censorship, we believe it is critical to maintain an open and constructive dialogue.

Purpose of the AADB-L Email List Serv

All AADB members in good standing are permitted to join the ListServ, if they choose. Participating members must agree to follow ListServ rules and guidelines. Those who habitually fail to follow the rules and guidelines will have all their messages sent to the Moderator before posting. The ListServ Liaison will be a member of the Board of Directors and will be the contact person between the ListServ and the Board.

Framework and Set up

  1. The ListServ will be provided by an online entity approved by the Board.
  2. Members will be given instructions on how to sign up on the ListServ.
  3. The ListServ will be moderated by a member as co-moderator and by an AADB board member as the ListServ Liaison, who will hold co-moderator status and monitor messages for appropriateness.
  4. Members who have a dispute with the operation of the ListServ or the Moderator will consult the ListServ Liaison.
  5. Members will not post complaints or disputes to the ListServ itself, but will follow the guidelines for Filing a Complaint listed below.
  6. When there isn't a member willing to serve as Moderator, the ListServ will be moderated by the ListServ Liaison and the AADB President until a volunteer member is found to fulfill these duties.
  7. Resolution of disputes and disciplinary actions will be handled by ListServ Directors, consisting of the AADB Executive Committee, the ListServ Moderator, and the ListServ Liaison. Should the number of ListServ Directors be an even number, the AADB President shall abstain from any votes for resolutions.

Table of Contents

  1. About the AADB-L List Serv
  2. Content Rules
    1. Unprofessional Postings
    2. Threatening Postings
    3. Solicitations
    4. Copyright
    5. Religion
    6. Accountability
    7. Commercial Use
    8. Opinions
    9. Misleading Information
    10. Confidentiality
    11. Changes Without Notice
    12. Agreement
  3. Format Rules
  4. Rule Violations
    1. Consequences For Misuse
    2. Intervention Steps
    3. Filing Complaints
  5. Sending Messages and Subscription Options
  6. Option Settings
  7. List Archive
  8. Problems
  9. Disclaimer

About the AADB-L ListServ

The AADB-L ListServ is available to share information, resources, advocacy, networking and enthusiasm about AADB for its members. These rules are meant to facilitate that purpose. Membership in the ListServ is a privilege of membership in AADB. Failure to comply with its rules can result in the loss of that privilege. Questions about these rules should be sent to the AADB-L ListServ Liaison.


AADB-L is an un-moderated ListServ. That means posts are distributed immediately and automatically without prior review. All AADB members have access to the ListServ if they choose.

AADB takes no responsibility for personal information included in list posts. AADB cannot guarantee the confidentiality of any post or that information will not be shared. Therefore, it is the list member's responsibility to exercise caution in sharing information via the ListServ and to be aware of the practical limits of confidentiality on any ListServ. It is also each poster's responsibility to comply with defamation laws and all other applicable laws. AADB is not responsible for list content or the distribution of list posts.

Content Rules

All users of the AADB-L ListServ must agree to the rules of conduct outlined below. Your agreement to the following is assumed implicitly when you become a member of the AADB-L ListServ or send and receive messages in regards to the AADB-L ListServ.

  1. Unprofessional Postings

    No foul language or inappropriate slang.

    Users are expected to communicate in a professional manner. Unprofessional, disrespectful or threatening communication may result in the moderation of the user's ListServ account. Moderation of an account may occur without prior notice.

  2. Threatening Postings

    No flaming or "personal attacks".

    Disagreeing with someone's opinion is not a personal attack, but rudeness, derogatory personal remarks (either directly to or about a member), including calling names or adding childish remarks, and/or not showing respect for another's right to express their opinion is not allowed.

    Any communications that are normally considered obscene, racist, sexually explicit, religious or other types of defamation, libelous, false, indecent, lewd, violent, abusive, threatening, harassing, or disruptive, or that may constitute grounds for civil liability is also not allowed.

  3. Solicitations

    Solicitations or commercial advertisements are prohibited.

    No advertisements spam or blatant promotion of businesses, commercial products or services is allowed. Announcements of new commercial products, events or services known to you or even from your own company are acceptable as long as they are not direct solicitations.

  4. Copyright

    No infringement of intellectual property.

    Do not post any information or other material protected by copyright without the permission of the copyright owner; to use any words, logos or other marks that would infringe upon the trademark, service mark, certification mark, or other intellectual property rights of the owners of such marks without the permission of such owners, or to post confidential information or any information that would infringe upon the proprietary, privacy or personal rights of others.

  5. Religion

    No promotion of religious beliefs.

    This list has members of many religions and difference in attitudes toward religion. Please respect the sensibilities of all.

  6. Accountability

    Do not post anything in a ListServ message that you would not want the world to see or that you would not want anyone to know came from you. Use caution when commenting on or discussing products.

  7. Commercial Use

    Commercial use of this ListServ is prohibited without prior authorization. Do not use the ListServ to solicit or conduct business, including the direct marketing of users' products or services, without authorization from the Moderator and ListServ Liaison.

  8. Opinions

    AADB monitors this ListServ occasionally for inappropriate postings, and does not on its own undertake editorial control of postings. AADB does not guarantee the accuracy of material shared on its list serves and does not necessarily endorse opinions expressed.

  9. Misleading Information

    Do not disguise the destination or the origin of any content transmitted through this service through false, misleading, or duplicative addresses or by forging headers or otherwise manipulating identifiers.

  10. Confidentiality

    You may not share the email addresses of other list members without prior consent. Forwarding list posts, sharing content from posts, or sharing email addresses of other list members without prior permission will be grounds for removal from the list. Posting of messages from non ListServe Members will not be allowed either, as membership and agreement to the rules of membership is required for participation in ListServ discussions to preserve member confidentiality both on and off the list.

  11. Changes Without Notice.

    This ListServ policy is subject to change depending upon the needs and requirements AADB and the ListServ subscribers.

  12. Agreement

    Participation in this group, implies acceptance of these terms. Thank you for being aware of this agreement and for being a valuable, productive contributor.

3. Format Rules

These are some guidelines that we ask you to follow to improve usability of the list.

Guidelines of Etiquette

Please follow these ideas so you may contribute to the conversation, be understood and not overwhelm others' email systems.

  • Include Your Name

    To frame your perspectives, it's useful to include your first and last name.

  • Use the Subject Line

    State concisely and clearly the specific topic of the comments in the subject line. This allows members to respond more appropriately to your posting and makes it easier for members to search the archives by subject.

  • Think About Your Audience

    Only send a message to the entire list when it contains information that everyone may benefit from.

  • Keeping Things Organized

    It is easier to follow a discussion on a topic if it is not broken across multiple threads. Keeping all related messages within a single thread keeps us organized, and makes following a discussion a breeze.

  • Check the "To:" Field

    When responding to a message from the list please check the "to:" field to determine whether your message is addressed to the whole list, or just the sender of the message. Messages such as "thanks for the information" or "can you send to me, too" should be addressed to individuals--not to the entire list. Do this by using your e-mail application's forwarding option or by typing in or cutting and pasting in the e-mail address of the individual to whom you want to respond.

  • Use the Google Group page or the contact the Moderators to change your mail settings, request assistance with email changes, or to unsubscribe.

    Do not post these requests to the ListServ. Please refer to the "Setting your List Options" for No Mail, Abridged Email, Daily Digest, or Individual Emails below in section 6.

  • Quoted Material In A Reply

    As a courtesy to all it is appreciated when you delete any or all of the original quoted content in a reply. Include only the relevant portions of the original message in your reply, delete any header information, and put your response before the original posting. Keep what is needed so your reply makes sense, but delete the excess.

  • Attention to Viruses

    The consequences of posting documents containing viruses are widely known. Therefore, do not upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available any material that contains software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment. If we deem that viruses are being spread by a member, either knowingly or not, we will suspend membership until we have assurances that the problem has been corrected. Please let us know if you are experiencing a problem with viruses from one or more individuals.

4. Rule Violations

Consequences For Misuse

In the event that any inappropriate posting or unauthorized use of the ListServ is brought to AADB's attention, including but not limited to prohibited posting and usage as outlined herein, AADB will take all appropriate action, in its sole discretion. AADB reserves the right to terminate, without prior notice, the ListServ access of any user who does not abide by these guidelines.

The ListServ Liaison will use three levels of intervention when there are a problem with a member violation the rules of the ListServ:

Intervention Steps

  1. Intervention Step 1:

    If a member sends a post to the ListServ that is deemed to violate the above rules, no notification will be sent before action is taken. The member will be put on moderated status for a period of one week (or until the moderator is satisfied that the member has cleaned up their emails) and will be contacted by the ListServ Liaison, who will send a standardized warning about the infraction. (See Exhibit A "ListServ Warning Message") There are several exceptional conditions that could lead to immediate removal from the list

    ListServ Warning Message (Exhibit A)

    Dear AADB-L Member,

    The message you posted to the AADB-L ListServ on (insert date and time, if multiple messages were sent) was inappropriate for the AADB-L ListServ because it violated ListServ rules. This is just a reminder that messages containing political, religious, commercial, or divisive content, as defined in the AADB-L ListServ Community Guidelines and posted on the ListServ, are prohibited. Excessive violation of the ListServ rules may result in your future messages being moderated, or your ability to post messages denied.

    Thank you.

  2. Intervention Step 2:

    If after being returned to un-moderated status that member again violates the rules, the member will be informed that this is their second violation of the rules and will be suspended from list privileges for a period not to exceed 30 days and will then be placed on continued moderated status. To be reinstated, the now moderated member will be asked to provide public apologies, evidence that they understand what they did and why it was a violation, and a plan for avoiding a future violations and subsequent removal.

  3. Intervention Step 3:

    If after having their list privileges reinstated a member violates the rules for a third time, they will be removed from the list permanently without notice and with restrictions on re- subscribing to the ListServ. Mitigating circumstances may be cause for avoiding removal but this would be based on correspondence privately with the ListServ Directors. Re-instatement will only be allowed under unusual circumstances and are entirely at the discretion of the ListServ Directors.

Removal from the ListServ does not constitute loss of membership in AADB.

Extreme incident:

Posting of illegal material, purposeful dissemination of viruses or intentional unprovoked personal attacks will result in immediate revocation of posting privileges.

Filing Complaints

Do not file a complaint to the entire ListServ. A complaint about a member's conduct can come from any member, including a board member; must be accompanied by the offending email; and must be received by the ListServ Liaison and Moderator within two weeks of occurrence. The complaint is to be made in one email to both the ListServ Liaison and Moderator, not the ListServ.

The complaint will then be sent to the ListServ Directors by the ListServ Liaison to be voted upon. If the majority of the ListServ Directors agree that a rule has been broken, the above steps will be taken.

Notwithstanding the above guidelines, the list ListServ Liaison/Moderator may, at any time and at his or her discretion, place the entire list or any individual member(s) on temporary moderated status to allow time for a matter to be referred to the ListServ Directors for review.

5. Sending messages and Subscription Options

To post to this group, send email to:

To join as a member to this group, send an email to:

To unsubscribe from this group, send email to:

For more options, visit this group at:

6. Setting your list options

Using a Web Browser of your choice, go to the Google Groups page for the AADB-L:

  1. On the upper right side of the screen, click on: "Edit My Membership"
  2. On the left side you will find the following options:
    1. Choose the option in which you wish to receive your emails by:
      • No Email

        I will read this group on the web.

      • Abridged Email - (Once per day for every 100 messages)

        Get a summary of new activity each day

      • Digest Email - (Approximately 1 email per day)

        Get up to 25 full new messages bundled into a single email

      • Email - (Approximately 5 emails per day depending on the activity of the list)

        Sends each message as it arrives

    2. Choose what nickname you want people within this group to see you by:

      Type in the name you wish to be identified by.

  3. Click on the "Save these settings" button
  4. On the right side you will find the following:
    • About this group

      Members can post, people can request an invitation to join, only members can read

    • Description: This is a ListServ for the American Association of the Deaf-Blind (AADB) members only. The purpose of this list is for advocacy, networking, support and other related deaf-blind issues. If you wish to join this list, you can become a member by visiting

    • Group email:
    • Unsubscribe button

      ***Note: DO NOT use Unsubscribe if you are going away and wish to re-subscribe upon your return, use the "Mail Delivery" options on the left side of the page and select "No Email"

7. List Archives

An archive of all messages sent to the AADB-L ListServ is archived in the "Discussions" tab of the group at:!forum/aadb-l

8. Problems

Questions, concerns, or complaints about the list or list members should be sent to the Moderators and AADB President, not to the ListServ. Send To:


  • ListServ Liaison: Kacie Weldy
  • AADB President: Jill Gaus

If reporting a problem, please included the following information-

Subject: related to your problem
Body: Give as much detail as you can and say who you are.

Disclaimer from AADB

The American Association for the Deaf-Blind assumes no responsibility for the opinions and information posted by others. In no event shall AADB be held liable for any special, indirect, or consequential damages or damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of any information posted on this site.

The opinions and information expressed on the AADB-L ListServ are solely those of the email authors alone. List members acknowledge that the posts on the AADB-L ListServ are not legal advice or opinions, and they are not a substitute for consulting one's own professional counsel or attorney about one's situation. AADB assumes no responsibility for the opinions or information posted on the AADB-L ListServ, or their accuracy.

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