Discussion Forum Policy

Please take a moment to read the following Discussion Forum Policy. This should be read in conjunction with our User Policy and Privacy Policy. If there is anything you do not understand, then please Contact Us.

This Discussion Forum Policy sets out certain rules that will govern your use of the discussion forums available at www.esd.org.uk/forums ("Discussion Forums") including some guidelines that we hope you will find helpful.

The Discussion Forums are only available to users registered with us to use the Discussion Forums ("Forum Users"). Some specific Discussion Forums are further limited to specific user groups, such as local authority employees. Other Discussion Forums are available to all Forum Users (including consultants, suppliers and private individuals).

To become a Forum User you must either:

  • be registered as a Network Member or Subscriber of esd (please see our User Policy for details); or
  • otherwise register here.

The Discussion Forums are provided as a place for Forum Users to report information, seek advice and share ideas in relation to the implementation of the electronic delivery of services within local government. As in a real community, Forum Users are asked to respect other Forum Users and their rights.

  1. Definitions

    "esd"
    means the suite of web sites and software applications available at www.esd.org.uk. This includes all web pages, resources and content of the products esd, esd-toolkit, esd-standards, esd-forums and esd-suppliers.
  2. This Discussion Forum Policy

    Your access and use of the Discussion Forums is subject to your acceptance of, and compliance with the provisions of this Discussion Forum Policy and any other legal notices and/or instructions which may appear in the Discussion Forums (including in any messages or attachments posted on a Discussion Forum) from time to time.

    IMPORTANT: By accessing and using the Discussion Forums you will automatically be taken to have read, understood and accepted this Discussion Forum Policy. If you do not agree to be bound by this Discussion Forum Policy, please cease to access any Discussion Forums. If you fail to observe any of the provisions of this Discussion Forum Policy, we reserve the right, at our discretion and without notice, to remove or edit any Messages and/or to exclude you (either temporarily or permanently) from the Discussion Forums, depending on the nature and severity of your breach.

    This Discussion Forum Policy may be amended from time to time, and we therefore suggest that you review it periodically.

  3. Rules for using the Discussion Forums

    • General Behaviour - Forum Users must not transmit to any Discussion Forum ("Post") any message or reply (including attachments) ("Message"), or knowingly receive via a Discussion Forum ("Access") any Message that is unlawful, illegal, fraudulent, offensive, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortuous, indecent, obscene, defamatory, invasive of another’s privacy, or discriminatory whether racially, ethnically, sexually, religiously or otherwise, or which may incite or instruct any person or organisation to undertake such activities.
    • Use of Language - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages containing language that is in any way unlawful, threatening or offensive. This includes the use of swear-words, bad language and offensive nicknames.
    • Breach of Confidence - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages that might in any way breach the confidence of another individual. For example, an email received from an individual cannot be placed on a Discussion Forum without first obtaining that individual’s consent.
    • Breach of Intellectual Property - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages that might in any way infringe any patent, trade mark, trade secret, copyright, database right or other similar right of any person.
    • Impersonation - Forum Users must not impersonate any person or identity, falsely state or otherwise misrepresent your affiliation with a person or organisation or disguise the origin of any content of a Message.
    • Viruses - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages that might contain computer viruses or any other computer code, or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software, hardware, or telecommunications equipment.
    • Illegal and Harmful Activities - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages relating to (or including links to) pirated software (including computer games), counterfeit goods or any other material which is, or might reasonably considered to be, illegal or otherwise harmful.
    • Pornography - Forum Users must not Post or Access Messages relating to (or including links to) any kind of pornography.
    • Personal Data - Forum Users must not Post any messages containing another person’s personal information (including their name, home address, job title, telephone number or other contact details) without first obtaining the relevant person’s consent, nor may you use the Discussion Forums to collect or store personal information concerning other persons.
    • Permitted Use - You may only use the Discussion Forums for either a Local Authority’s lawful purpose(s) or your own personal non-commercial use. You must not Post any Messages containing or including links to any overt advertisements or promotional materials, or otherwise use the Discussion Forums overtly to generate personal business from other Forum Users.
  4. Your Personal Information

    When you register as a Forum User you must submit your name, email address and other details. In return we agree to use all such personal information in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

    The Discussion Forums are a restricted community of Forum Users, who have registered with us. They include individuals who are employed by a Local Authority or a Central Government organisation and private sector consultants and private individuals.

    IMPORTANT: Please note that we display your email address when you are browsing any Discussion Forums and also alongside any Message you Post, together with the date you registered with the Discussion Forums and the total number of Messages you have Posted.

    You are responsible for ensuring the safety of all other personal information. We recommend that you do not include your home address, job title, telephone number or other more sensitive personal information in any Messages, unless you are entirely satisfied that such information should be made public.

  5. Monitoring

    In order to provide Forum Users with general support and advice in relation to their use of the Discussion Forums and for security and abuse-management reasons, we reserve the right to:

    • access and monitor the use of Discussion Forums and any Messages Posted on them; and
    • take whatever other steps we consider are necessary to protect our Forum Users, including editing or removing any Messages or suspending or discontinuing any Discussion Forums.

    We do not undertake to monitor every Message nor to monitor the conduct of every Forum User. Moderators will access the Discussion Forums from time to time in order to help ensure that other Forum Users are adhering to this Discussion Forum Policy.

  6. Sponsored Discussion Forums

    Some of the Discussion Forums are sponsored by a third party, as indicated on the Discussion Forum.

    Where a third party sponsors a Discussion Forum, we will continue to access and monitor the use of such Discussion Forum (in accordance with this Discussion Forum Policy) on behalf of the third party.

    Please note that such third party sponsors shall not be entitled to use your personal information for any marketing or other purposes.

  7. Liability and Disclaimers

    Please read carefully the paragraphs entitled Disclaimers in our User Policy.

    Please note that:

    • as the Discussion Forums consist largely of Messages Posted by Forum Users that are not employed or contracted by us, we can accept no liability in respect of the content of any Messages, including the accuracy or truthfulness of any such Messages or any responsibility for the consequences of your acting in reliance on such Messages, nor do we endorse any opinions expressed by any Forum Users in any Messages;
    • we cannot guarantee the prompt editing or removal of any Messages;
    • we reserve the right at our sole discretion to remove or edit Messages from the Discussion Forums or to suspend or discontinue any Discussion Forums at any time for any reason; and
    • we reserve the right, at our sole discretion, to deny any Forum User access to the Discussion Forums, without notice, for any breach of this Discussion Forum Policy.