Terms and Conditions

Community Rules & Etiquette and Privacy Guidelines

Thank you for being part of our community. To ensure the best possible experience for all members, we have established some basic guidelines for participation.

By joining and using this community, you agree that you have read and will follow these rules and guidelines. You also agree to reserve discussions and shared files and content to that best suited to the medium. This is a great medium with which to solicit the advice of your peers, benefit from their experience, and participate in an ongoing conversation. Questions should be directed to our member services department via the Contact Us link on this site.

Please take a moment to acquaint yourself with these important guidelines. If you have questions, contact the member services department. In order to preserve an environment that encourages both civil and fruitful dialogue, we reserve the right to suspend or terminate membership in this community for anyone who violate these rules.

The Rules

    • Respect others. Focus on the content of posts and not on the people making them. Please extend the benefit of the doubt to newer guests and members; there’s no such thing as a stupid question.

    • Respect the purpose of the community. Use the community to share successes, challenges, constructive feedback, questions, and goals instead of products or services that you provide. If you’ve found a product or service helpful, please share your experience with the group in a respectful way.

    • Use caution when discussing products. Information posted on the discussion groups and in the 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. Do not post anything that you would not want the world to see or that you would not want anyone to know came from you.

    • Respect intellectual property. Post content that you have personally created or have permission to use and have properly attributed to the content creator.

    • When posting items in our collaborative environment, please indicate if the item is not available for reuse. It’s also advisable to contact the owner of any material if you would like to reuse it.

    • Post your message or documents only to the most appropriate communities. This helps ensure all messages receive the best response by eliminating "noise."

Discussion Group Etiquette

    • State concisely and clearly the topic of your 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.

    • Send messages such as "thanks for the information" or "me, too" to individuals, not to the entire list. Do this by using the "Reply to Sender" link in every message.

    • Do not send administrative messages, such as “remove me from the list,” to the group. Instead, use the web interface to change your settings or to remove yourself from a list. If you are changing email addresses, you do not need to remove yourself from the list and rejoin under your new email address. Simply change your settings.


The Legal Stuff

The ESOP Association Online Community Terms of Use Agreement

 

The ESOP Association, or “TEA,” operates this site and provides the networking tools and services that allow individual users to create customized online personal profiles. The services offered by TEA include access to any TEA-branded URL and other features (e.g., music and video embedded players) made available by TEA from time to time, the opportunity for users to create and upload their own content on the TEA HUB, and any other features, content, or applications offered from time to time by TEA in connection with this site (collectively, the “TEA Services”). The TEA Services are hosted in the U.S.

 

This Terms of Use Agreement (“Agreement”) sets forth the legally binding terms for your use of the TEA Services. By using the TEA Services, you agree to be bound by this Agreement. You are authorized to use the TEA Services (regardless of whether your access or use is intended) only if you agree to abide by all applicable laws and the terms of this Agreement and so long as you remain a TEA member in good standing. Please read this Agreement carefully. If you do not agree to be bound by it or with any of the legal provisions applicable to it and to follow all applicable laws, you will not be allowed access to the TEA Services.

 

This Agreement includes TEA’s policy for acceptable use of the TEA Services and Content (as defined in Section 5.1 below) posted on or through the TEA Services as well as your rights, obligations, and restrictions regarding your use of the TEA Services and Content posted on or through the TEA Services. In order to participate in certain TEA Services, you may be notified that you are required to download software or content and/or agree to additional terms and conditions from TEA. Unless otherwise provided by the additional terms and conditions applicable to the TEA Services in which you choose to participate, those additional terms are hereby incorporated into this Agreement.

 

TEA may modify this Agreement from time to time, and such modification shall be effective upon posting by TEA on the TEA Website. Your continued use of the TEA Services after TEA posts a revised Agreement signifies your acceptance of the revised Agreement. It is therefore important that you review this Agreement regularly to ensure that you are updated as to any changes.

 

Please choose carefully the information that you post on or through the TEA Services and that you provide to other Users. Your TEA profile or activities may not include any form of Prohibited Content, as outlined in Section 7 below. Despite this prohibition, information, materials, products, or services provided by other TEA Members (for instance, in their profiles) may, in whole or in part, be unauthorized, impermissible, or otherwise violate this Agreement, and TEA assumes no responsibility or liability for this material.

 

  1. General.TEA has the right, but not the obligation, to monitor any activity and content associated with this site. TEA may investigate any apparent or reported violations of its policies and take any action that it, in its sole and absolute discretion, deems appropriate, including but not limited to issuing warnings; rejection of, refusal to post, or removal of any materials on the site; and/or denial, restriction, suspension, or termination of your access to any or all part(s) of the TEA Services at any time. TEA expressly reserves the right to remove, screen, or edit any content that TEA deems, in its sole and absolute discretion, to violate this Agreement or any applicable law or to be otherwise objectionable. TEA also reserves the right to permanently suspend your registration for and use of the TEA Services in response to violations of this agreement. TEA may take any or all of the actions above at any time, with or without prior notice or explanation, and without liability.

 

  1. Eligibility.Use of the TEA Services and registration to be a Member for the TEA Services (“Membership”) is void where prohibited. By using the TEA Services, you represent and warrant that (a) all registration information that you submit is truthful and accurate; (b) you will maintain the accuracy of such information.

 

  1. Term.This Agreement and any posted revision to this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect while you use the TEA Services or are a Member. You may terminate your Membership at any time, for any reason, by e-mailing membership@esopassociation.org. TEA may terminate your Membership at any time for any or no reason, with or without prior notice or explanation, and without liability. Even after Membership is terminated, this Agreement, including Sections 5 to 17, will remain in effect.

 

  1. Use by Members.The TEA Services are for the personal use of Members only. The Services may be used only for commercial endeavors if such endeavors are specifically endorsed or authorized by TEA. Users are not permitted to use TEA Services to sell or promote products or services, or solicit contributions or donations . TEA reserves the right to remove commercial content at its sole discretion. Commercial advertisements, affiliated business links, and other forms of unauthorized solicitation will be removed from Member profiles without notice or explanation and may result in termination of Membership privileges. TEA reserves the right to take appropriate legal action for any illegal or unauthorized use of the TEA Services.

 

Illegal and/or unauthorized use of the TEA Services, including collecting usernames, user ID numbers, and/or e-mail addresses of Members by electronic or other means for the purpose of sending unsolicited e-mail or unauthorized framing of or linking to the TEA Website, or employing third-party promotional sites or software to promote profiles for money, is prohibited.

 

  1. Proprietary Rights in Content on the TEA Website

5.1 TEA does not claim any ownership rights in the text, files, images, photos, video, sounds, musical works, works of authorship, software scripts and applications, or any other materials (collectively, “Content”) that you post on or through the TEA Services. After posting your Content to the TEA Services, you continue to retain any such rights that you may have in your Content, subject to the limited license herein. By displaying or publishing (“posting”) any Content on or through the TEA Services, you hereby grant to TEA a limited license to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce, and distribute such Content in furtherance of TEA’s mission and TEA’s sole and absolute discretion, including without limitation distributing part or all of the TEA Website in any media formats and through any media channels.

 

5.2 The license that you grant to TEA is non-exclusive (meaning that you are free to license your Content to anyone else in addition to TEA); fully paid and royalty-free (meaning that TEA is not required to pay you for the use on the TEA Services of the Content that you post); sublicensable; and worldwide (because the Internet and the TEA Services are global in reach).

 

5.3 By uploading or otherwise posting any Content to the TEA Website, you represent, warrant, and covenant that: (i) you own the Content posted by you on or through the TEA Services or otherwise have the right to grant the license set forth in this Section 6; (ii) the posting of your Content on or through the TEA Services does not violate any applicable laws, including but not limited to all applicable data protection laws and the privacy rights, publicity rights, intellectual property rights, copyrights, contract rights, or any other rights of any person or entity; and (iii) you have obtained the prior consent of any individuals whose personal information you use, disclose, or transmit on or through the TEA Services. You agree to pay for all royalties, fees, and any other monies owing to any person or entity by reason of any Content posted by you on or through the TEA Services.

 

5.4 The TEA Services contain Content of TEA (“TEA Content”). TEA Content is protected by copyright, trademark, trade secret, and other laws, and TEA owns and retains all rights in the TEA Content and the TEA Services. TEA hereby grants you a limited, revocable, nonsublicensable license to reproduce and display the TEA Content (excluding any software code) solely for your personal use in connection with viewing the TEA Website and using the TEA Services.

 

5.5 The TEA Services contain Content of Users and other TEA licensors. Except as provided within this Agreement and subject to TEA’s copyright policy (viewable at TEA.org), you may not copy, modify, translate, publish, broadcast, transmit, distribute, perform, display, or sell any Content appearing on or through the TEA Services.

 

5.6 TEA performs technical functions necessary to offer the TEA Services, including but not limited to transcoding and/or reformatting Content to allow its use throughout the TEA Services.

 

  1. Content Posted.

6.1 TEA may reject, refuse to post, or delete any Content for any or no reason, including Content that in the sole judgment of TEA violates this Agreement or which may be offensive or illegal, violate the rights of any person or entity, or harm or threaten the safety of any person or entity. TEA assumes no responsibility for monitoring the TEA Services for inappropriate Content or conduct. If at any time TEA chooses, in its sole discretion, to monitor the TEA Services, TEA nonetheless assumes no responsibility for the Content, no obligation to modify or remove any inappropriate Content, and no responsibility for the conduct of the User submitting any such Content.

 

6.2 You are solely responsible for the Content that you post on or through any of the TEA Services, any material or information that you transmit to other Members, and your interactions with other Users.

 

  1. Content/Activity Prohibited.TEA prohibits the use of the TEA Services to post or transmit Content that is illegal or depicts illegal activity. The following are examples of the kind of Content that is illegal or prohibited to post on or through the TEA Services. TEA reserves the right to investigate and take appropriate action against anyone who, in TEA’s sole and absolute discretion, violates this provision, including, without limitation, removing the offending Content from the TEA Website, denying the individual’s access to TEA Services, or terminating the Membership of such violators, and/or reporting violators to law enforcement authorities. Prohibited Content includes, but is not limited to, Content that in the sole and absolute discretion of TEA:

7.1 is patently offensive and promotes racism, bigotry, hatred, or physical harm of any kind against any group or individual;

7.2 is derogatory toward or disparaging of TEA;

7.3 exploits people in a sexual or violent manner;

7.4 contains excessive violence or offensive subject matter or contains a link to an adult website;

7.5 solicits personal information from anyone under 18;

7.6 publicly posts information that poses or creates a privacy or security risk to any person;

7.7 constitutes or promotes information that you know is false or misleading or that promotes illegal activities or conduct that is abusive, threatening, obscene, defamatory, or libelous;

7.8 constitutes or promotes an illegal or unauthorized copy of another person’s copyrighted work, such as providing pirated computer programs or links to them, providing information to circumvent manufacturer-installed copy-protect devices, or providing pirated music or links to pirated music files;

7.9 involves the transmission of “junk mail,” “chain letters,” unsolicited mass mailing, instant messaging, “spimming,” or “spamming”;

7.10 contains restricted or password-only access pages or hidden pages or images (those not linked to or from another accessible page);

7.11 furthers or promotes any criminal activity or enterprise or provides instructional information about illegal activities including but not limited to making or buying illegal weapons, violating someone’s privacy, or providing or creating computer viruses;

7.12 solicits passwords or personal identifying information for commercial or unlawful purposes from other Users;

7.13 involves commercial activities and/or sales such as contests, sweepstakes, barter, advertising, or pyramid schemes without prior written consent from TEA;

7.14 includes a photograph or a video of another person, in a context in which that person had a reasonable expectation of privacy, that you have posted without that person’s consent;

7.15 violates the privacy rights, publicity rights, copyrights, trademark rights, contract rights, or any other rights of any person; or

7.16 promotes propaganda and/or symbols of organizations that are unconstitutional or illegal in your country.

 

  1. Protecting Copyrights and Other Intellectual Property. TEA respects the intellectual property rights of others and requires that our Users do the same. You may not upload, embed, post, e-mail, transmit, or otherwise make available any material that infringes any copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret, or other proprietary rights of any person or entity. TEA has the right to suspend or terminate the Membership of infringers.

 

  1. Member Disputes.You are solely responsible for your interactions with other TEA Members. TEA reserves the right, but has no obligation, to become involved in any way with disputes between you and other Members.

 

  1. Privacy. Any Content posted by Users on or through the TEA Services may be publicly viewable on the TEA Website as soon as that information is submitted. By posting Content on or through the TEA Services, you waive any privacy expectations that you may have with respect to the Content posted.

 

  1. Disclaimers.TEA IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR AND MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, AS TO THE USER CONTENT OR THE ACCURACY AND RELIABILITY OF THE USER CONTENT POSTED ON OR THROUGH THE TEA SERVICES, WHETHER CAUSED BY USERS OF THE TEA SERVICES OR BY ANY OF THE EQUIPMENT OR PROGRAMMING ASSOCIATED WITH OR USED IN THE TEA SERVICES, AND SUCH USER CONTENT DOES NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT THE OPINIONS OR POLICIES OF TEA.

 

PROFILES AND THIRD-PARTY APPLICATIONS CREATED AND POSTED BY MEMBERS ON THE TEA WEBSITE MAY CONTAIN LINKS TO OTHER WEBSITES. TEA IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CONTENT, ACCURACY, OR OPINIONS EXPRESSED ON SUCH WEBSITES, AND SUCH WEBSITES ARE NOT NECESSARILY INVESTIGATED, MONITORED, OR CHECKED FOR ACCURACY OR COMPLETENESS BY TEA. INCLUSION OF ANY LINKED WEBSITE ON THE TEA SERVICES DOES NOT NECESSARILY IMPLY APPROVAL OR ENDORSEMENT OF THE LINKED WEBSITE BY TEA. WHEN YOU ACCESS THESE THIRD-PARTY SITES, YOU DO SO AT YOUR OWN RISK.

 

TEA TAKES NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THIRD-PARTY ADVERTISEMENTS OR THIRD-PARTY APPLICATIONS THAT ARE POSTED ON OR THROUGH THE TEA SERVICES, NOR DOES IT TAKE ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE GOODS OR SERVICES PROVIDED BY ITS ADVERTISERS.

 

TEA IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CONDUCT, WHETHER ONLINE OR OFFLINE, OF ANY USER OF THE TEA SERVICES. TEA ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY ERROR, OMISSION, INTERRUPTION, DELETION, DEFECT, DELAY IN OPERATION OR TRANSMISSION, COMMUNICATIONS LINE FAILURE, THEFT, DESTRUCTION, UNAUTHORIZED ACCESS TO, OR ALTERATION OF ANY USER OR MEMBER COMMUNICATION. TEA IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY PROBLEMS OR TECHNICAL MALFUNCTION OF ANY TELEPHONE NETWORK OR LINES, COMPUTER ONLINE SYSTEMS, SERVERS OR PROVIDERS, COMPUTER EQUIPMENT, OR SOFTWARE OR THE FAILURE OF ANY E-MAIL OR PLAYERS BECAUSE OF TECHNICAL PROBLEMS OR TRAFFIC CONGESTION ON THE INTERNET OR ON ANY OF THE TEA SERVICES OR COMBINATION THEREOF, INCLUDING ANY INJURY OR DAMAGE TO USERS OR TO ANY PERSON’S COMPUTER RELATED TO OR RESULTING FROM PARTICIPATION OR DOWNLOADING MATERIALS IN CONNECTION WITH THE TEA SERVICES.

 

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL TEA BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE, INCLUDING PERSONAL INJURY OR DEATH, RESULTING FROM USE OF THE TEA SERVICES, FROM ANY USER CONTENT POSTED ON OR THROUGH THE TEA SERVICES, OR FROM THE CONDUCT OF ANY USERS OF THE TEA SERVICES, WHETHER ONLINE OR OFFLINE. THE TEA SERVICES ARE PROVIDED “AS IS” AND AS AVAILABLE, AND TEA EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ANY WARRANTY OF FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR NON-INFRINGEMENT. TEA CANNOT GUARANTEE AND DOES NOT PROMISE ANY SPECIFIC RESULTS FROM USE OF THE TEA SERVICES.

 

  1. Limitation on Liability.IN NO EVENT SHALL TEA BE LIABLE TO YOU OR ANY THIRD PARTY FOR ANY INDIRECT, CONSEQUENTIAL, EXEMPLARY, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, INCLUDING LOST PROFIT DAMAGES, ARISING FROM YOUR USE OF THE TEA SERVICES, EVEN IF TEA HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. NOTWITHSTANDING ANYTHING TO THE CONTRARY CONTAINED HEREIN, TEA’S LIABILITY TO YOU FOR ANY CAUSE WHATSOEVER AND REGARDLESS OF THE FORM OF THE ACTION WILL AT ALL TIMES BE LIMITED TO THE AMOUNT PAID, IF ANY, BY YOU TO TEA FOR THE TEA SERVICES DURING THE TERM OF MEMBERSHIP.

 

  1. U.S. Export Controls.Software available in connection with the TEA Services (the “Software”) is further subject to U.S. export controls. No Software may be downloaded from the TEA Services or otherwise exported or re-exported in violation of U.S. export laws. Downloading or using the Software is at your sole risk.

 

  1. Disputes.The Agreement shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the District of Columbia, without regard to its conflict of law provisions. You and TEA agree to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the appropriate state or federal court located in the City of Washington, DC, to resolve any dispute arising out of the Agreement or the TEA Services. EACH OF THE PARTIES HEREBY KNOWINGLY, VOLUNTARILY, AND INTENTIONALLY WAIVES ANY RIGHT THAT IT MAY HAVE TO A TRIAL BY JURY IN RESPECT OF ANY LITIGATION (INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY CLAIMS, COUNTERCLAIMS, CROSS-CLAIMS, OR THIRD-PARTY CLAIMS) ARISING OUT OF, UNDER, OR IN CONNECTION WITH THIS AGREEMENT. FURTHER, EACH PARTY HERETO CERTIFIES THAT NO REPRESENTATIVE OR AGENT OF EITHER PARTY HAS REPRESENTED, EXPRESSLY OR OTHERWISE, THAT SUCH PARTY WOULD NOT, IN THE EVENT OF SUCH LITIGATION, SEEK TO ENFORCE THIS WAIVER OF RIGHT TO JURY TRIAL PROVISION. EACH OF THE PARTIES ACKNOWLEDGES THAT THIS SECTION IS A MATERIAL INDUCEMENT FOR THE OTHER PARTY ENTERING INTO THIS AGREEMENT.

 

  1. Indemnity.You agree to indemnify and hold TEA, its affiliates, and their respective officers, agents, employees, successors, and assigns harmless from any loss, liability, claim, or demand, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, made by any third party because of or arising out of your use of the TEA Services in violation of this Agreement and/or arising from a breach of this Agreement and/or any breach of your representations and warranties set forth in this Agreement and/or if any Content that you post on or through the TEA Services causes TEA to be liable to another.

 

  1. Other.This Agreement is accepted upon your use of the TEA Website or any of the TEA Services and is further affirmed by your becoming a Member. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between you and TEA regarding the use of the TEA Services. The failure of TEA to exercise or enforce any right or provision of this Agreement shall not operate as a waiver of such right or provision. The section titles in this Agreement are for convenience only and have no legal or contractual effect. TEA is a registered trademark of The ESOP Association. This Agreement operates to the fullest extent permissible by law. If any provision of this Agreement is unlawful, void or unenforceable, that provision is deemed severable from this Agreement and does not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions.

Please contact us at esop@esopassociation.org with any questions regarding this Agreement.