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Terms of Service and Rules

SMNET RULES AND GUIDELINES FOR MEMBER CONDUCT
Revised April 2014


PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING RULES. BY CONTINUING TO USE SMNET YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE RULES SET OUT BELOW.
This is not you usual yada yada - continue without reading these rules at your own peril.

In order to maintain a nurturing supportive environment and a pleasurable experience for all, we promote civility and professionalism in our community. As such, we have compiled these rules of conduct which we ask you to abide by during your time with us - we hope its a long time.

Remember that the following rules are applicable to everybody, you are among many other real people who use these forums, and as such, we expect you to participate within the guidelines of our rules detailed below.

We strive to ensure our community brings a pleasurable experience and to remain as helpful as possible to our users. At the same time, this community is representative of midwifery as a profession and as such we are bound, and bind others to certain codes of conduct laid down by SMNET which are based in part upon professional codes of conduct all midwives and students should be very familiar with (as laid down by the Nursing and Midwifery Council, the NMC).

You must agree to these rules before proceeding to participate on SMNET

Posting Rules

First and foremost, all content should remain suitable for a family audience. SMNET members will behave with civility and respect towards each other at all times. We will not tolerate personal attacks against any Members, Staff Members, Lecturers, Mentors, Personal Tutors, Universities, Trusts or other midwifery related websites and organisations.

We respect everyone's right to their opinions but we have a duty to protect our members, other websites, organisations and professionals in the midwifery profession from any public defamation. We encourage heated debate but will not tolerate personal attacks. We also discourage factions, cliques and other such negative alliances that detract from the 'inclusion' ethos of the site.

SMNET members will agree not to post essays or reflections as this may tempt plagiarism. However, we encourage the sharing of references, links and excerpts of essays/notes and reflections where these assist members learning. All notes and reflection texts should be anonymised to protect the identity of any persons or trusts contained therein.

Interview questions and interview testimonials. All members will refrain from publicly providing full details of the recruitment and selection processes that they experience at different Universities. For more information regarding this please see here and also here.

  • NO unsolicited advertising, research / surveys, fundraising activity or recruitment. Advertising, conducting surveys / research, recruitment and fundraising activities will not be allowed on SMNET or via Private Message to SMNET Members. We have a strict policy that will result in members being banned if this rule is circumvented. If you wish to discuss the possibility of advertising, conducting research / surveys or using this website as an avenue for fundraising or recruitment, then please use our contact form.
  • No posting is allowed of instructions or links on how to share or illegally download software or protected media files like songs, tv shows or movies. Such postings will be dealt with immediately and could lead to you being banned and losing your status as a member here.
  • Be respectful towards other SMNET members regardless of their level of comprehension of the subject at hand. There are varying degrees of knowledge present among members. Some are walking midwifery encyclopaedias and others just getting started on the road to their dream.
  • Post your question / start a discussion in one forum only - choose the most suitable forum to post. If it is not in the proper forum an Admin or Moderator will move it - if you notice a thread or post in the wrong place, report it. Posting the same discussion in multiple forums (cross posting) will only result in the second+ post(s) being removed.
  • You cannot give medical advice via SMNET. Even if you are a qualified midwife the SMNET online arena is not a conducive environment for assessment and diagnosis of medical conditions. You can by all means impart your knowledge and support from personal experience but members should be directed to obtain diagnosis and assessment conclusions from their local qualified midwives, GP, health visitors or other members of the multi-disciplinary team that can establish findings from physical examinations and be in possession of all the facts and medical history to make an informed diagnosis - something an online environment cannot provide.

Username Policy

  • No domain names in usernames
  • No advertising in usernames, eg. Cheap_Iron_Vitamins will be banned on sight
  • We strongly advise your username does not contain any variation of your first or last name, location or university unless you are happy for the whole world, including your cohort, trusts, universities, NMC and other bodies to know your true identity.

If your present username is in violation of the above, please contact us.

Signature Policy

  • NO DIRECT advertising... Include a link and description by all means, but omit any hype.
  • We reserve the right to modify signatures that do not comply with the above and signatures we feel are inappropriate.
  • We also strongly advise you not to use your real name or date of birth, or Uni in your signature. This is to protect your identity.

Avatar / Profile Picture Policy

Your chosen avatar / profile image must be suitable for a family audience and must not breach copyright - you should own the rights, or have permission to use any image for an avatar / profile picture. Your avatar / profile image must not be an advert, logo or promote any product or service. We may be lenient under this rule and allow certain exceptions at our sole discretion.

Multiple Accounts

Members are expected to maintain a single account upon SMNET. Multiple accounts we detect will be merged or deleted at our discretion. If you already have another account here, please tell us and we will merge or delete as per your request.

Spam Policy

Individuals who abuse the website by sending out private message spam to members or posting spam communications on the website will be immediately dealt with. Your IP Address will be forever banned and your account will be deleted without warning or goodbye.

Editorial Policy

Moderators and Administrators are in complete control here. They are the management, and as such have the full authority to edit or remove any post without warning. Moderator and Admin decisions are final are are based upon upholding the reputation of the profession and these very rules of conduct.

No content from SMNET can be copied, printed or distributed by any mechanism at any time without the express written permission of the site owners, SMNET Ltd. All content is the intellectual property of SMNET Ltd and by posting on this site you are agreeing to the same. We reserve the right to amend, delete, disseminate or reuse content you submit where the content is not already subject to trademark, copyright or other laws.

SMNET Sharing Information Policy

It is important to consider what you share on the internet. While SMNET is a very friendly and supportive community we would like to advise you to consider what you should share and what you should not.

We have created these guidelines to protect you, your work and your place on your course, while working within the guidelines set by the NMC, UCAS and by Universities.

This policy provides guidance on the sharing of information like:

  • Personal Statements
  • Essays/Assignments/Projects
  • Personal Information and Identifiers
  • Trust and University Information and Identifiers
  • Recruitment and Selection Information

Personal Statements

We want you to do well and because of this we provide a plethora of support and guidance with writing your perfect PS.

We provide SMNET guidelines on PS construction, as well as individual PS support via the Personal Statement section of the site.

You must not share your PS via personal messaging, email, facebook or any other medium unless you can be sure that you know the person very well and that they will not 'borrow' parts of your PS.

We encourage you to seek official SMNET PS support via the PS review section and the staff team who manage the section. This section is headed up by Mothgirl and is a completely confidential area - your PS is visible to you and a carefully selected PS team only.

We ask that when you do share your PS outside the protection of the confidential PS review area set up by SMNET you do so only with persons who are currently studying or qualified and so have already completed the application process.

Please be reminded that UCAS use one of the most sophisticated software packages in the world designed solely to check submissions for evidence of plagiarism. PS's are checked very rigorously in an automated process and against a huge database of published offline and online publications in addition to previously submitted personal statements.

Essays/Assignments/Projects

Whilst we encourage the exchange of articles, references and links to support your learning we actively discourage the sharing of essays, assignments, presentations and other academic work that you submit to University. Excerpts from these documents are allowed to facilitate learning, but should be made with care.

There are many reasons for this, the most obvious being plagiarism. Students who rely on the work of others are not gaining the skills, knowledge and abilities they need to become a great midwife. In midwifery you need to complete your own research, reading and work to fully inform your own individual practice style and knowledge to become an excellent midwife.

We suggest you post up on the forum for general advice, guidance, articles and links but refrain from sharing your entire essay.

SMNET will cooperate fully with the investigations made by UCAS, learning establishments and other relevant organisations where allegations of plagiarism are brought.

Personal Identifiers

In line with the Nursing and Midwifery Councils Guidance on professional conduct for nursing and midwifery students, we strongly advise that you refrain from posting personal identifiers as well as maintain professional conduct at all times. The important line with regard to your internet use is in the NMC code under the section entitled 'Unprofessional behaviour' and states "Misuse of the internet and social networking sites" as an example of unprofessional behaviour.

The NMC are fully in support of the use of internet sites BUT your conduct on these sites matter. As does the rules for behaviour and conduct of those sites and as you are aware here on SMNET we have rules to protect you, other members, Trusts, Uni's staff and other midwifery organisations.

For SMNET's guidance on how to keep yourself safe and your conduct in line with the NMC's recommendations see here.

Trust and University Information and Identifiers

We work with many Universities and Trusts and like with you, we want to protect the identities of Uni and Trust staff so we ask you to please refrain from posting up the names of admin staff or Uni lecturers or the staff that interviewed you etc. We would also ask you not to give out Uni and Trust staff email and contact numbers without seeking their consent first.

Similarly, if you have a problem with a University or Trust please see the SMNET Managing Grievances Procedure below.

Recruitment and Selection Information

Whilst we encourage support and guidance with applying and preparing for interview, we also don't want to disadvantage members who may be part of a staggered selection procedure. For example some Uni's will interview candidates a week or so apart. If you post up all your interview questions and test details then the second set of candidates gain an advantage over the first candidates. Please ensure your Uni's interviews are over before you post up details about your interview day that could give someone an advantage.

SMNET Grievance Procedure

Any member of SMNET may at some time have problems or concerns with the content of a post or in relationships with other members that they wish to raise with SMNET management. They will want the grievance to be addressed, and if possible, resolved. It is also clearly in SMNET's interests to resolve problems swiftly to ensure that members enjoyment of the site is not compromised.

Grievances are best dealt with at an early stage, informally, with a member of SMNET staff. However, we have formal procedures in place to handle cases left unresolved. Pursuing the formal route should be a last resort rather than the first option.

  • Informal Grievance Stage 1
    If you have a concern, grievance or complaint to do with a post, blog, private message or social group message on SMNET, then please report the post. You can do this by clicking on the 'Report Post' button that is on the top right of all posts. By reporting a post you are sending a message to the SMNET staff team via our internal system. The SMNET team will then read the post and your concerns and take any action that is appropriate.

    If you have a grievance or complaint to do with another member of the site you should, wherever possible, start by raising the matter informally via a private message to any administrator. You may be able to agree a solution informally between you.
  • Formal Grievance
    If the matter is serious and/or you wish to raise the matter formally you should complete the SMNET Grievance Procedure Form (1). This can be obtained from an administrator after discussing your concerns via stage 1 above.

    You should stick to the facts and avoid language that is insulting or abusive.
  • Grievance hearing
    The administrator that you raise a grievance with will raise the matter with management who will be guided by SMNET's Principal Advisor.

Appeal
If you are unhappy with the Managements decision and you wish to appeal you should let us know.

You will be invited to formally appeal the decision. Your appeal will be heard by the Directors of SMNET Limited, normally within five working days.

After the directors have met and discussed your case, they will give you a decision, normally within 24 hours. The Director decisions are final.

Grievances Concerning a University, Trust, College or Midwifery Organisation

Where your grievance concerns a University, Trust, College or Midwifery Organisation the SMNET staff team will advise you to raise your concern as an informal grievance with the organisation directly.

If you have posted about your grievance on the site and the SMNET Team feel that you would benefit from raising your grievance with the University, Trust or Midwifery Organisation directly then they will advise you via PM and may amend your post, depending on the nature of the grievance.

The reason for this is to ensure that your grievance is dealt with swiftly and settled as soon as possible to allow you to put the matter behind you. It is also to allow the University, Trust, College or Midwifery Organisation to respond to your concerns and settle the matter in private rather than in the public domain.

If you are advised to raise your concern directly with the University, Trust, College or Midwifery Organisation and you chose not to do so then your post will automatically be deleted. The reason for this is that if you do not want to take steps to settle the matter then we do not feel it is appropriate to leave your post in the public domain. However, if you chose not to raise your concerns because you are afraid or worried about how to go about it then please advise Sunny of this, who will seek advice and guidance for you.

Violation of the Rules

Should you break our rules, you will receive a warning and depending upon severity could lose your status as a member here temporarily or permanently. In the case of the latter, your login will be disabled and at our humble discretion, your IP address will be banned temporarily or forever.

Legal Disclosures

Under no circumstances will SMNET, any Administrator, Moderator, web site or business associated with any Administrator or Moderator be liable in any way for any content, including, but not limited to, any errors or omissions in any post content or PM (Private Message), or for any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of the use of any content posted, transmitted or otherwise made available via the site.

SMNET accepts no liability for the contents of blogs, posts or messages sent using our 'personal message' system. By posting ANY content on this website you agree to fully indemnify SMNET and it's staff from any litigation and hold SMNET harmless from repercussions arising from content you post.

SMNET has a policy to co-operate fully with universities, trusts, the NMC and other professional bodies with an interest in serious misconduct cases. Remember all content and communications are logged and can be distributed upon our receipt of a formal request by appropriate organisations easily and with no fuss.

You are held solely and personally responsible for what you post and for any repercussions of something you say or write that may be out of line or damaging to a person, university, trust, organisation or company's reputation, or any product or service.

If you should decide to unsubscribe, neither you, nor we can delete your posts (unless they infringe these rules).

If you feel threatened by another user or have concerns about a conversation, we ask that you try to work it out privately via the private message system so as not to ruin the experience of other guests.

All posted content has a 'REPORT' function which notifies a moderator/admin - if something is posted in breach of these rules, please use the 'report' feature. If you are concerned about an image or photograph contained within the site, whether in a members profile or submitted in a post, please contact a member of staff.

By using this website, you agree to these rules and also agree not to distribute any copyrighted materials of any sort. Anyone found to be in breach of this condition will have their account terminated with immediate effect and the appropriate authorities will be informed.

SMNET can not be held responsible for the content of other website's content wether we link to it directly, indirectly or otherwise. If you have a problem with the content on a website we link to then please report the post on SMNET (we may remove the link) and contact the website concerned.

Revision of the Rules

We reserve the right to revise, remove or add to these Rules at any time and without prior notice. We will make every effort to announce changes to these Rules in the Forums in advance and will seek to obtain your agreement (as we are doing now) to any new rules or amendments.

FURTHER RULES YOU MUST AGREE TO

The use of some areas of SMNET (such as certain individual forums) are subject to their own rules. Before posting in these areas you will be made aware of these and asked to agree them before continuing. These additional rules may include some of the above rules, or variations of them geared at the specific forum or section concerned. If you don't agree with any of the 'specific area' rules then you may decline them without penalty to your standing here at SMNET but by declining rules laid down in specific site areas you will be unable to participate in those areas.

You are granting us with a non-exclusive, permanent, irrevocable, unlimited license to use, publish, or re-publish your Content in connection with the Service.

We reserve the rights to remove or modify any Content posted for any reason without explanation. Requests for Content to be removed or modified will be undertaken only at our discretion. We reserve the right to take action against any account with the Service at any time.

Questions?

If you have any questions or need clarification on any of the rules above, please use our contact form, you will receive a prompt reply.

If you do not agree with these terms, please do not register or use this Service. If you wish to close your account, please contact us.