Terms of Use and Code of Conduct for Defenders' Online Forums

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(including Facebook, Twitter, Care2.com, YouTube, Flickr)

As a progressive organization, we are committed to allowing freedom of expression, including maintaining a safe online space for people with opposing views to express themselves.

Like the real world, the people who participate in our online forums are diverse -- and their views on the environment, wildlife conservation, animal and human rights, politics and many other topics reflect that diversity. What we all share is the desire to talk seriously about issues that matter.

That being said, everyone who contributes to these conversations should be able to express their views and beliefs in a safe environment, without feeling attacked. In order to foster a safe space for intelligent and respectful dialogue, everyone who participates in our online forums must agree to and abide by the following Code of Conduct:

Debate is encouraged, but it must remain civil and respectful. We do not tolerate disrespect, discourtesy, vulgarity, or threats of violence on our online forums.

This means that Defenders reserves the right to remove all posts and comments that:

  • contain threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, hateful, or otherwise objectionable content.
  • disrupt dialogue. We do not allow users to repeatedly post the same information to our online forums in a deliberate attempt to "spam", clog or otherwise inhibit open discussion.
  • promote violent action, even in jest. This includes threatening or attempting to incite violence toward another user, person or entity for ANY reason.
  • reference subjects entirely unrelated to Defenders, wildlife conservation, the environment, or animal welfare. This includes topics of an explicitly political nature ("I <3 Candidate X!"), personal nature ("I <3 cheese!"), or of a not-even-close-to-Defenders-related nature ("I <3 American Idol!").
  • engage in ad hominem attacks (i.e. attack a fellow user, rather than the content of the comment itself), stalking or otherwise harassing others on our forums.
  • invade a fellow user's privacy or improperly reveal a fellow user's identity.
  • attempt to impersonate or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent another user, person or entity.
  • violate existing copyright, patent, trademark or other proprietary rights.
  • promote unsolicited or unauthorized commercial advertising, promotional materials, "junk mail," "spam," "chain letters," "pyramid schemes," or any other form of solicitation.
  • endanger or harm a minor in any way.

Please note: If a user violates our Code of Conduct, Defenders reserves the right to ban them from further participation on any of our online forums.

Reporting Abuse

Help us maintain a safe space. Please do not encourage abuse by responding to abusive posts or otherwise engaging in the furthering of inappropriate topics and posts. And, if you notice anything you find offensive on Defenders of Wildlife's online forums, we would appreciate it if you would let us know by sending an email to onlineabuse@defenders.org.