ACS Communities Rules and Etiquette
Thank you for being part of ACS Communities (Community). The Community is provided as a service for the members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS). To ensure the best possible experience for all members, we have established this Code of Conduct for participation in the Community (Code).
Please take a moment to acquaint yourself with the Code. By clicking "I Agree" below, you agree that you have read and will follow the Code. The Community is a great medium in which to solicit the advice of your peers, benefit from their experience, and participate in ongoing conversations. If you have any questions about the Community or the Code, please contact the ACS Division of Member Services via the Contact Us link on this site. Technical questions on association management issues should be directed to our help desk.
- Communities labelled as a specialty (e.g., General Surgery, Colon and Rectal Surgery, Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Endocrine Surgery) are reserved for content exclusively related to direct patient care and clinical issues.
- Communities without specialty designation can receive content of a surgical nature related to the subject of that Community. Examples are Advocacy or Practice Issues and Economics communities.
- Postings regarding social issues, political matters, or ACS policies are not allowed on the clinical Communities.
- Don't challenge or attack others.
- Don't post commercial messages.
- Use caution when discussing products. Information posted in communities and libraries is available for all to see, and comments are subject to libel, slander, and antitrust laws.
- All defamatory, abusive, profane, threatening, offensive, or illegal materials are strictly prohibited.
- Remember that other participants have the right to reproduce postings to this site unless you specify otherwise.
- Post only messages and documents relevant to the stated topic.
- Please note carefully all items listed in the disclaimer and legal rules below, particularly regarding the copyright ownership of information posted.
- We reserve the right to reject any message for any reason.
Discussion Group Etiquette
- Include a signature tag on all messages. (In rare cases where you believe an anonymous post is advisable, contact your community administrator.)
- State concisely and clearly the topic of your comments in the subject line.
- Post your response before the original posting.
- Send a message to the entire community only when it contains information that everyone can benefit from.
- Use the "Reply to Sender" link to the left of every message to reply to an individual.
- To remove yourself from a community or enter a new e-mail address, use the “Settings” function instead of making the request by posting in the community.
Access. You will be granted access to the Community after you have accepted these Terms. You agree to provide information that is accurate, true, and complete and agree to notify ACS of any changes in your contact information, including updating your contact information in the portal found on the site. You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your password, and you are responsible for all activities that occur under your Web ID and password. If you become aware of any unauthorized use of your password or of your account, notify ACS immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Restrictions on Content. All users shall be responsible for conducting their Community-related activities in compliance with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations. In addition, you agree to act with a professional demeanor. Please do not post when you do not know the answer. This will help avoid postings containing incorrect or misleading answers. Without limiting the foregoing, you specifically agree that you will not make posts that:
- Contain profanity; racist, sexist, or homophobic comments; harass or stalk any person; or contain defamatory statements or personal attacks on others;
- Disrupt other user’s enjoyment of the Community;
- Are made under another person’s name or impersonate anyone;
- Contain personal details or private information about any other person or any confidential information or any information that would infringe upon the proprietary, privacy, or personal rights of others;
- Breach any intellectual property rights law (including posting material protected by copyright without the permission of the copyright owner or using 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);
- Contain any advertisements or promotions for any products or services of you or another party;
- May be considered spamming or contain chain letters or any other form of unauthorized solicitation, including the solicitation of lawsuits; or
- Violate U.S. export laws or encourage illegal activity of any kind.
The Community is not intended to be a place for the exchange of any information or data that would be regulated by the federal Health Insurance and Portability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and its implementing regulations. Do not post any Protected Health Information, as that term is defined in HIPAA, to the Community. ACS shall not be liable for any use or disclosure of Protected Health Information in violation of HIPAA through the Community, including, but not limited to, the transmission of Protected Health Information to an unintended recipient.
User Posts. By posting material, the posting party warrants and represents that he or she owns the copyright with respect to such material or has received permission from the copyright owner. In addition, the posting party grants the ACS and users of this site the nonexclusive right and license to display, copy, publish, distribute, transmit, print, and use such information or other material. Once you have made a posting, you cannot withdraw or retract the license and consents. By posting on the Community, you acknowledge that the material is not confidential and agree that other users of the Community may copy, use, transmit, modify, distribute, and display the content you post.
Messages should not be posted if they encourage or facilitate members to arrive at any agreement that either expressly or impliedly leads to price fixing, a boycott of another's business, or other conduct intended to illegally restrict free trade. Messages that encourage or facilitate an agreement about the following subjects are inappropriate: prices, discounts, or terms or conditions of sale; salaries; profits, profit margins, or cost data; market shares, sales territories, or markets; allocation of customers or territories; or selection, rejection, or termination of customers or suppliers.
Monitoring and Enforcement. ACS does not prescreen, verify, or edit the content posted by users in the Community. However, ACS reserves the right to monitor any and all information transmitted or received through the Community. ACS, in its sole discretion and without further notice to you, may review, censor, or prohibit the transmission or receipt of any information that ACS deems inappropriate or that ACS determines violates the Terms. ACS has the sole discretion to enforce the Terms.
Content. The Community is provided for the purposes of discussing matters and posting materials related solely to surgery and the surgical profession and for no other purpose. The content posted on the Community may contain links to third-party websites or refer to third-party products. ACS does not have control over such websites or products, and ACS is not responsible for the availability or content of such websites. ACS does not endorse, sponsor, or approve and is not responsible for such websites and such products. ACS shall not be responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of reliance on such websites or products.
Termination. ACS reserves the right to terminate access to any user who does not abide by the Terms. The limited license rights granted hereunder shall remain in full force and effect unless terminated or canceled for any of the following reasons: upon discontinuance of the Community by ACS or by ACS if you violate any of the Terms.
Limitations. You acknowledge that the information provided through the Community is comprised of content from sources, which are beyond the control of ACS. Neither ACS nor its licensors shall be liable for any errors, inaccuracies, or delays in content or for any actions taken by you in reliance thereon.
YOU ASSUME ALL RESPONSIBILITY (AND HEREBY HOLD ACS HARMLESS) FOR DETECTING AND ERADICATING ANY VIRUS OR PROGRAM WITH A SIMILAR FUNCTION ON YOUR COMPUTER EQUIPMENT, BY WHATEVER MEANS YOU DEEM MOST APPROPRIATE FOR YOUR NEEDS. YOU ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THE COMMUNITY IS PROVIDED TO YOU ON AN "AS IS, WITH ALL FAULTS" BASIS. ACS AND ITS LICENSORS EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES, WHETHER EXPRESS, ORAL, IMPLIED, STATUTORY, OR OTHERWISE, INCLUDING ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OF FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY, ANY WARRANTIES ARISING BY VIRTUE OF CUSTOM OF TRADE OR COURSE OF DEALING, AND ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF TITLE OR NONINFRINGEMENT. SOME STATES DO NOT ALLOW EXCLUSIONS OF IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR LIMITATIONS ON HOW LONG AN IMPLIED WARRANTY LASTS, SO THE ABOVE LIMITATIONS MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. NONE OF ACS NOR ANY OF ITS AFFILIATES SHALL BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY THIRD PARTY FOR ANY LOSS, DAMAGE, LIABILITY, COST, OR EXPENSE SUFFERED OR INCURRED IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OF OR PARTICIPATION IN THE FORUM OR ITS CONTENT NOR FOR ANY SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF THE USE OF OR INABILITY TO USE THE COMMUNITY FOR ANY PURPOSE WHATSOEVER, EVEN IF ACS OR ITS AFFILIATES HAVE BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. THE PROVISIONS CONTAINED IN THIS LIABILITY SECTION SHALL SURVIVE TERMINATION OF THE AGREEMENT.
YOU HEREBY AGREE TO INDEMNIFY, DEFEND, AND HOLD HARMLESS ACS, ITS AFFIALIATES, AND ITS LICENSORS (INCLUDING THEIR OFFICERS, DIRECTORS, MEMBERS, MANAGERS, PARTNERS, EMPLOYEES, AFFILIATES, AGENTS, REPRESENTATIVES, OR SUBCONTRACTORS) FOR AND AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS BROUGHT BY PERSONS OR ENTITIES OTHER THAN THE PARTIES TO THIS AGREEMENT ARISING FROM OR RELATED TO YOUR ACCESS TO AND USE OF THE COMMUNITY, INCLUDING THE INFORMATION OBTAINED THROUGH THE COMMUNITY.
Copyright.The content within the Community is protected by copyright and other laws in both the United States and elsewhere. The content includes both content owned and controlled by ACS and content of third parties. You have permission to view and download a single copy of the content of the Community as long as you comply with the Terms or until ACS terminates this agreement or your access rights. All rights not granted to you herein are expressly reserved by ACS.
If you own intellectual property and believe it is being infringed on the Community, please let ACS know by filing a complaint as set forth below. In accordance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. §512), any notification of claimed copyright infringement must be sent to ACS’s Designated Agent with the following information:
A physical copy or electronic signature of a person authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed;
Identification of the copyrighted work claimed to have been infringed or, if multiple copyright works at a single online site are covered by a single notification, a representative list of such works at that site;
Identification of the material that is claimed to be infringing or could be the subject of infringing activity and that is to be removed or access to which is to be disabled and information reasonably sufficient to permit ACS to identify the material;
A statement that the complaining party has a good faith belief that the use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law; and
A statement that the information in the notification is accurate and, under penalty of perjury, the complaining party is authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.
Changes. ACS reserves the right to make changes or modifications to the Community and the Terms. Display of notice of changes on the Community shall constitute effective notice on the day ACS places the changes, and your continued use of the Community thereafter shall constitute your acceptance of such changes or modifications.
Governing Law. This Agreement shall be governed by the laws of the State of Illinois.