Group Admin Agreement
You acknowledge and agree that you are an independent volunteer administrator (“Group Admin”) of one or more forums on the Gender Spectrum Lounge and that you are not an employee, agent or representative of Gender Spectrum. You have no authority to bind Gender Spectrum in any manner. Gender Spectrum reserves the right to terminate your privileges as a Group Admin at any time without warning.
You hereby agree to abide by the then-current Terms of Service and other guidelines and policies Gender Spectrum may from time to time make available, including without limitation this Group Admin Agreement.
Minors Between 13 and 18 Must Obtain Parental Authorization
As further described in our Terms of Service, you must be at least thirteen (13) years of age or older to use the Service, including moderating a forum group. If the laws of your jurisdiction so permit, minors between thirteen (13) and seventeen (17) years of age may act as a Group Admin, with the consent and approval of their parents and/or guardians. If you permit your minor child or legal ward (“Authorized Minor”) to act as a Group Admin, you and your Authorized Minor both hereby agree to this Agreement on behalf of both yourself and your Authorized Minor. If you are a minor who does not feel comfortable asking your parent or guardian to sign up for an account on your behalf, please contact us directly at lounge[at]genderspectrum.org and we will determine whether an accommodation can be made.
Introduction to the Group Admin’s Job
Your most basic and regular duty will be reading all new posts in the groups and forums that you moderate, and removing any posts that violate the Gender Spectrum Community Agreement. We want to remove these posts quickly, so that our forums remain safe and open to our members. You should always assume that the member who wrote the post did not realize that they were in violation of the guidelines, and clearly let them know how they can edit and repost their content in a manner that would be acceptable.
You will also be responsible for handling Reports – this is the system by which Lounge Members can let Group Admins know that a forum post or private message is problematic for them. Members may Report a post because they notice before you do that it’s in violation of the Community Guidelines, or maybe because it makes them uncomfortable (in which case they’ll let you know why). You can use your best judgment on how to handle reports in your own forum, but if you have any questions at all, get in touch with the Lounge Administrator.
Finally, your job will be to help mold the forums into the community we want them to be! There may be times when a forum thread edges towards being too argumentative or political – in this case it is fine to add a post to let your forum members know that if the thread continues to escalate you may need to close the topic.
Group Admin Guidelines
- All groups must be approved by Gender Spectrum in writing. Please be mindful of your role in the Lounge, and in particular do not voice your own political opinions or ideas in this role. As a nonprofit organization, Gender Spectrum does not engage in partisan political activity, or any other activity that is inconsistent with its nonprofit status.
- If a post violates the Community Guidelines, copy out the text of the post and send it to the poster by Private Message along with a note explaining why it was in violation and how they can change it for re-posting, and then delete the original post.
- In general, try to be as hands-off as possible. Let people change their own content whenever you can, and think carefully before asking for things to be removed.
- The exception to this rule is pictures of unclothed bodies – forum users are required to get Group Admin permission before posting these. If a questionable photo is posted without your permission, take it down and contact the poster, even if you would judge the picture permissible.
- Be available and communicative. Forum members are invited to check with their Group Admin before posting content they feel falls in a gray area of the guidelines, and are required to get permission before posting pictures of unclothed bodies. Try to check your messages frequently and respond clearly.
- If you feel that a photo is on the line of appropriateness, ask the member to try to express their message in words.
- Be patient and compassionate. Many of the forum members will be new to the format, or may not speak English as their first language. They may be uncomfortable with the vocabulary surrounding gender. Always give them the benefit of the doubt, and always have an explanation ready when you do need to moderate something.
- As a moderator, you may have access to personally-identifying information about forum users, or other non-public information related to Gender Spectrum (“Confidential Information”). Such Confidential Information may include information about users of the Gender Spectrum Lounge, future business plans of Gender Spectrum, in-progress features or beta versions of the Service, and other non-public information. You affirm that in connection with any Confidential Information you may receive:
- you will not disclose this information to anyone, other than as needed to Gender Spectrum staff;
- you will not store or copy this information; and
- you will only use such information only to the extent necessary to carry out your role as a Group Admin, for the benefit of Gender Spectrum.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help! If you’re not sure whether certain content requires moderation, or how to handle a situation that comes up, just reach out to the Lounge Administrator ([email protected]) and ask. We are here to support you!
Summary of Problematic Posts (Reasons to Moderate)
- Any photograph of an unclothed body that you have not approved. In this instance, remove the picture immediately, and then get in touch with the user letting them know why.
- Pictures of clothed bodies and/or prosthetics that appear to have the intent to titillate or arouse, or writing of a clearly erotic nature. In this instance, get in touch with the user asking them to remove or edit their own content before making any changes yourself.
- Photos used without permission/attribution. Users posting photos must have the permission of each person depicted in the photograph, and of the photographer (or other copyright holder) before posting photographs. If you are contacted by any person asking that you remove a photo because they are pictured without their permission, remove the photo and get in touch with the poster.
- Intellectual property. If you are contacted by any person asking that you remove a photo because of a copyright or trademark complaint, promptly refer the party to the Lounge Administrator, who will ensure that their complaint is handled pursuant to our Intellectual Property Policy, which is available online at ___.
- “Vote (or don’t) for (insert name)” posts. Forum members are asked to limit political discussion and to avoid discussing which candidates they favor or despise. If you see a post like that – especially if it’s rude or provocative – contact the poster and remind them of the guideline regarding it, and ask them to self-edit or remove their post.
Group Admin How-To’s
To Send a Private Message
Please refer to the Quick Start Guide.
Deleting a Post/Managing Reports
Posts that you believe violate our content guidelines should be taken down expeditiously. Please review and familiarize yourself with the Lounge Community Agreement and the Terms of Service, particularly the Member Content section of the TOS. Content that commonly violates Gender Spectrum’s content guidelines includes: photos of unclothed bodies posted without pre-approval, political content, content meant to titillate or arouse, hateful or intolerant speech, etc. Use your best judgment and remember that sometimes being hands off can be good for community evolution. If you’re on the fence about whether a post should be removed and no users have reported it to you, ask a fellow moderator for a second opinion and/or wait it out; good online communities have a habit of policing themselves.
Steps to delete a post due to a content guideline violation:
- Copy and paste the content of the post and prepare to send a message to the original author:
- In the subject line, include “Message from Group Admin” or “Post Removed by Group Admin”
- In the message, include a brief explanation as to why the post was removed (cite a Lounge guideline if you can) followed by the content of the original post.
- If there are some relevant pieces in the original post, invite the user to rephrase their content and repost it.
- Warn the user that repeatedly posting content that violates Gender Spectrum content guidelines will result in their account being suspended or disabled.
Addressing posts that are alleged to violate intellectual property rights, or that contain legal threats:
- Immediately direct complaints about intellectual property infringement, including DMCA notices, and any other legal matters, to the Lounge Administrator, and to copyright[at]genderspectrum.com.
Admitting a New Member to Your Group
The Lounge will automatically email each Admin when a new member requests to join their Private Group. If you are already logged into The Lounge, you may see a blue notification icon appear at the top right hand corner of your page (near your avatar).
- Screen new members. If you do not already know the user, click on the person’s avatar; then click on their “Profile” tab. Identify the line that reads “Please check any of the boxes that describe you” to see if that person matches your group profile. If you still require additional information, you may send the user a private message. It may be helpful to keep a template of standard questions you like to ask users before they join your group. These questions should be short and simple.
- Respond to requests. To keep users engaged, please respond to their request to join your group within a reasonable period of time, preferably 24 hours.
- Should you reject a user from joining your group, please follow up with a short private message explaining who the group is for and why they were not considered for group membership.