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Acceptable Usage Policy

BSAC Policy for the Provision of Internet and Other Public Electronic Services

Download full version of policy here

BSAC Policy for the Provision of Internet and Other Public Electronic Services

Definitions

For the purposes of this document;

BSAC

The British Sub Aqua Club, its employees, authorised representatives and selected partners engaged in the business of the British Sub Aqua Club.

BSAC Member

A fully paid up member of the British Sub Aqua Club.

BSAC HQ

The BSAC offices and staff located at Pier Road, Telfords Quay, Ellesmere Port.

Computer system

An electronic device which is used to provide or obtain information and services.

Internet Services

Services BSAC makes available by way of computer systems with a properly registered network address and domain name.

Website

Describes a computer system that is accessible by the general public by way of the internet and may include systems that are accessible both anonymously and by way of authentication.

Public

A user or users that may access to a computer system anonymously

User

An individual who has accessed a BSAC computer system by physical or electronic means.

Operator

An individual that has been properly delegated to provide services by electronic means.

Home page

A human readable page of information that is provided by a particular computer system answering requests to a properly registered domain name.

Scope

The Purpose of this document is to describe the general operating policy by which BSAC will use electronic systems to make services and benefits available to BSAC members and others.

By accessing the electronic services BSAC make available, BSAC members and other visitors to its Websites consent to being bound by these policies.

Membership or standing within BSAC will not exclude individuals or organisations from compliance with these policies.

The rapid rate of technological change may require BSAC add to or alter specific policy and user guidance. Such policy and guidance will be provided separately and specifically to the services and systems to which it relates. Provision and change of such specific policy will be the responsibility BSAC Council or those it has properly delegated for the purpose.

It is the responsibility of individuals to acquaint themselves with specific policy prior to using the systems they affect.

BSAC will ensure that all users have the opportunity to consult the relevant policy documents by providing a link or notice displayed on the Home page of computer systems providing the service.

Internet Services

BSAC operates a number of computer systems which are accessible by the general public using the internet. All operators and visitors to these Websites must accept and comply with the relevant policies governing the use and operation of BSAC Internet Services.

The BSAC Internet Services and Websites are identifiable by properly registered domain names which include but are not limited to;

  • .bsac.com
  • .bsac.org
  • .bsactravelclub.co.uk
  • .bsacsnorkelling.co.uk
  • .divebsac.com
  • .bsacforum.co.uk

BSAC Systems subject to this policy may be reached by way of other domain names and other means at the discretion of BSAC.

BSAC Website Policy

Policy Statement

Questions and comments concerning the BSAC Website Policy should be addressed to the BSAC IT Team Leader and made in the first instance by contacting BSAC HQ.

BSAC will use Computer Systems connected to the Internet for the purposes of providing services to BSAC members and others as it sees fit.

BSAC will make its best endeavours to comply with all relevant European and UK law governing the operation of computer systems, electronic information provision, electronic publishing and data processing.

Website Content and Accessibility

BSAC will not tolerate the use of its Websites for the purposes of harassment, discrimination or any other purpose that may be regarded as threatening toward an individual.

BSAC will make its best endeavours to avoid exclusion or discrimination by way of poorly designed electronic content. BSAC aim to meet all priority 1 requirements of the W3C Web Content Accessibility guidelines. Meeting this standard is commonly known as Level A compliance.

BSAC are welcoming and responsive to comments and suggestions from all those that may be affected by the design of electronic content or operation of computer systems which are directly controlled by BSAC. Concerns should be addressed to the BSAC IT Team Leader and made by contacting BSAC HQ in the first instance.

BSAC aim to remove all and any content that it deems to be inappropriate at the earliest opportunity possible.

Interactive Website Content

Interactive content comprises text graphics and other media that may be made available on BSAC websites in real time by persons outside the direct control of BSAC.

Interactive content may include but is not limited to;

  • Electronic Discussion forums.
  • File attachments.
  • Real time messaging systems.
  • Content Management Systems.
  • Web logs.

Interactive content is accepted at the sole discretion of BSAC Council and those properly delegated to represent it.

Content which is deemed inappropriate in the opinion of BSAC will be removed at the earliest opportunity.

Additional Policies and Guidelines for Interactive Content

BSAC Electronic Privacy Policy

Policy Statement

Questions and comments concerning The BSAC Electronic Privacy Policy should be addressed to the BSAC Honorary Secretary and made in the first instance by contacting BSAC HQ.

BSAC will use its best endeavours to safeguard the privacy of its internet visitors.

The electronic privacy policy describes how BSAC may obtain and process the information that is gathered from its websites.

The Electronic Privacy Policy may be varied from time to time at the discretion of the BSAC Council. BSAC will endeavour to ensure that a link to the current privacy policy appears on the home page of computer systems and websites that are subject to it. The current policy can be obtained on request by contacting BSAC HQ.

In agreeing to provide personal information by electronic means individuals and organisations do not forfeited their rights as prescribed under the Data Protection Act 1998. BSAC will continue to apply the same level of care and rigour to safeguard the privacy of BSAC members and other visitors to its Websites.

How is personal information collected?

Personal information may be collected with the consent of the user by way of interactive submission.

Personal information may be requested in person by a member of BSAC.

Personal information may be collected automatically without the knowledge of the user. Use of BSAC websites will indicate that a user has consented to the collection of this information by BSAC.

What information is collected?

BSAC may collect personal information appropriate to the service which is requested.

In the course of operation BSAC may record information which is provided automatically by a users computer system without the knowledge of the user. This may include details which can be used to identify a geographic location, organisation or individual.

How does BSAC use this information?

There are various reasons why personal information is gathered electronically which includes but is not limited to;

  • Provision of electronic services that require a users authenticity to be established.
  • Provision of other services offered by BSAC.
  • Participation in electronic surveys
  • Participation in events offered by BSAC

Information gathered with the explicit consent of the user will only be used for the purpose for which it was intended except in those circumstances where BSAC must provide it to fulfil statutory obligations.

BSAC may use personal details to contact users directly for the purposes of obtaining further information needed to fulfil the original purpose. BSAC may use personal information to contact users by electronic or physical means including but not limited to;

  • Sending e-mail to those that have requested it
  • Telephoning users to obtain additional information and clarification
  • Other electronic and physical correspondence.

Information that is gathered automatically without the explicit consent of the user will not be used by BSAC to identify an individual. BSAC may use this information for the purposes of demographic and statistical reporting with the purpose of enhancing the services that it offers to BSAC members and other users. BSAC may make this information available to others to fulfil its statutory obligations.

BSAC Electronic Mail

BSAC will endeavour to use e-mail addresses supplied to it conscientiously and with due regard for the wishes of the owner of the address.

Individuals related to a commercial organisation may receive e-mail from BSAC on behalf of the commercial organisation where a relationship between BSAC and the commercial organisation has been previously established.

BSAC will contact all members for whom it has an email address regarding essential company business. These include changes to the 3rd Party Insurance Policy, Notification of AGM and accounts. These emails will be sent as and when required, at an expected frequency of once per year.

BSAC will contact all members for whom it has an email address regarding significant updates to the DTP or changes to SDCs. BSAC will contact all members for whom it has an email address when significant changes to the benefits offered to members occur. This will be by invite to view the relevant BSAC website rather than direct selling. The frequency of these emails is anticipated to be 3-4 per year.

BSAC will email individual members for whom it has an email address when they have achieved a new diving or instructing grade to advise on routes for further training and invite them to complete a survey. BSAC will contact each member from whom it has an email address on their birthday. BSAC may securely disclose email addresses to a third party. The emails addresses may only be used for BSAC business (for example email transmission and surveys) and shall not be retained by the third party.

BSAC Electronic Mailing Lists

BSAC operate a number of automated electronic mailing lists to provide services and benefits to BSAC members and others in a timely and convenient manner.

BSAC will at all times comply with European and UK directives covering the sending of unsolicited commercial electronic mail (spam).

Individuals receiving e-mail from BSAC electronic mailing lists will;

  • Have provided an e-mail address to BSAC.
  • Consented to BSAC sending e-mail to the address provided (opt in).
  • Be provided with instructions to be removed from the e-mail list within each and every correspondence made on behalf of the list.

BSAC opt in lists include but are not limited to BSAC Talk, the BSAC National Diving Committee Bulletin, Snorkelling news, the BSAC Shop News and Member Benefits News. Lists will normally send no more than one email per month. Members may choose which lists they receive via the membership area on the bsac.com website.

What information may the BSAC store on a users computer?

Information that is obtained by users of BSAC websites may be stored persistently by the users computer. This may occur by interactive or automatic means and is beyond the control of BSAC.

In order to provide electronic services in a timely and convenient manner it may be necessary for BSAC to store information on a users computer system by way of an electronic token known as a cookie. Such a token will contain only the information necessary to operate the service and is the only means by which BSAC will store information onto a users computer without the express knowledge and consent of the user.

Token files created by BSAC will;

  • be obviously identifiable
  • may not interfere with the operation of the users computer in any other way

How may BSAC disclose information to third parties?

BSAC may disclose your personal information and any information gathered automatically when required by law or in the good-faith believe that such actions are necessary to;

  • Conform to the edicts of the law or comply with a legal process served on BSAC
  • Protect and defend the rights or property of The BSAC, or visitors to the BSAC Websites
  • Identify persons who may be violating the law, the legal notice, or the rights of third parties;
  • Cooperate with the investigations of purported unlawful activities.
  • Facilitate the sale of all or part of BSAC capital stock or assets.

Security

BSAC will take reasonable precautions to ensure that the personal data it gathers in the course of operating electronic computer systems will be kept securely and within the control of BSAC at all times.

BSAC will take reasonable precautions to ensure that all representations made for and on behalf of BSAC will be clearly identifiable.

Data Protection

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 a user within the United Kingdom can make a formal request for the following information to be disclosed;

  • Clarification that their personal data is being processed by BSAC
  • A description and copy of such personal information
  • The reasons why such data is being processed
  • Details of to whom they are or may be disclosed

BSAC reserves the right to charge an administration fee commensurate with the time and expertise needed to provide such information.

The BSAC Data Protection Notification (registration Z8893394) may be viewed by visiting the Data Information Commissioners website at http://www.ico.gov.uk/

BSAC Electronic Advertising Policy

Policy Statement

Questions and comments concerning The BSAC Electronic Advertising Policy should be addressed to the BSAC Web Advertising Team Leader and made in the first instance by contacting BSAC HQ.

Only those Commercial Advertisements properly accepted and complying with the BSAC Web Advertising terms and conditions may be displayed on BSAC Websites.

Commercial advertisements may be accepted for display on The BSAC Websites at the discretion of the BSAC Web Advertising Group.

These Terms and Conditions for BSAC Web Advertising are available from BSAC HQ on request.

Electronic Commercial Advertising

A commercial advertisement will comprise any display or communication made for the purposes of obtaining pecuniary or other benefit in the course of operating a business.

Commercial Advertisements may encompass but are not limited to;

  • Text and graphics displayed on Websites
  • E-mail and other direct correspondence between persons and organisations.
  • Voice and audio messages.
  • Links to Websites outside the direct control of BSAC.
  • Testimonials and recommendations made on behalf of organisations engaged in the operation of a business.

BSAC Members and those commercial organisations that are properly endorsed to carry The BSAC name and logo may be eligible for preferential treatment in respect of commercial advertising as decided by BSAC from time to time.

Non-Commercial Advertising

A non-commercial advertisement will comprise any display or communications which is made for the purposes of obtaining pecuniary or other benefit by individuals which can be proven to be unrelated to the operation of a business they or others are engaged in.

Non-commercial advertisements are accepted on a good will basis only. No right or entitlement will be associated to the acceptance or display of such an advertisement.

Terms and conditions covering the acceptance and display of non-commercial advertisements will be displayed and provided as is appropriate in the opinion of BSAC.

Conflict and Resolution

There may be occasions where an advertisement is not clearly identifiable as commercial or non-commercial. A final decision will be at the sole discretion of The BSAC Council or those properly delegated to act on its behalf.

BSAC Web Forum Acceptable Use Policy

Scope

Questions and comments concerning the BSAC Web Forum Acceptable Use Policy should be addressed to the BSAC IT Team Leader and made in the first instance by contacting BSAC HQ.

This policy covers the specific operation and use of the electronic discussion forums provided by BSAC for BSAC members and other visitors to its Websites. It is additional to the policies defined within;

BSAC Policy for the Provision of Internet and Other Public Electronic Services

BSAC Website Policy

BSAC Electronic Privacy Policy

BSAC Electronic Advertising Policy

This policy may be amended from time to time by the forum Moderators who have been properly delegated by the BSAC IT Team Leader.

Acceptable Use

BSAC Council facilitate the necessary resources to operate the BSAC Web forums. However the forums are operated on a totally voluntary basis by BSAC members that have been properly delegated to do so and are referred to throughout this document as the Moderators. Comments and questions concerning the Moderators should be addressed to the BSAC IT Team leader by contacting BSAC HQ in the first instance.

A Web forum provides an open, threaded messaging system by which participants can post, review, and respond to comments. The BSAC Web forum is intended to allow BSAC Members and others to discuss all matters relating to the art of underwater swimming.

Accordingly, this Acceptable Use Policy is intended to foster an environment in which all those participating in the Web forum community feel comfortable posting their views, comments, opinions, ideas, insights, and criticisms that are essential to a vigorous and meaningful debate on the issues.

The suitability of topics for the forum is decided by the forum Moderators in conjunction with guidance from BSAC Council.

For further information at to what is acceptable is available in;

Acceptable Use Guidance for Participants in the BSAC Web Forums

Unacceptable Use

The following is a non-exclusive summary of conduct that is considered unacceptable use of the BSAC Web forum;

  • False headers, addresses, or identities
  • Personal attacks, threats, slurs, or ad hominem abusive language
  • Unacceptable commercial solicitations
  • All illegal activities
  • Abuse of copyright
  • Libel
  • Prejudicial behaviour
  • Harassment

Basic Rules

Users of the BSAC Web forum are invited to post messages expressing their views, comments, ideas, insights, and criticisms relating to a particular topic or subject.

At all times, users should show courtesy, tolerance and respect to others and must not abuse the forum.

Abuse of the forum is decided at the sole discretion of the forum Moderators who have been properly delegated by the BSAC IT Team Leader.

The policy and guidance included in;

BSAC Web Forum Acceptable Use Policy

Acceptable Use Guidance for Participants in the BSAC Web Forums

Is intended to empower the Moderators to ensure discussion and representation made on the BSAC Web Forums are conducted in a good natured fashion with due regard for the wishes of the majority of BSAC Members that participate in them and the wider aims of BSAC.

The publication of this policy and guidance is intended to ensure that the Moderators exercise their powers as openly and transparently as possible.

Consequences of Unacceptable Use

BSAC reserves the right to enforce this Acceptable Use Policy when BSAC or its forum Moderators at their discretion conclude that an individual or entity has engaged in abusive conduct in connection with the BSAC Web forum. Upon concluding that an individual or organisation has violated the Policy, the forum moderators may intervene.

Intervention will take the form of:

  • An informal warning
  • A formal caution
  • Deletion of offending messages and articles
  • Suspension of access to the BSAC Web forum for a specified period of time
  • Banning from the BSAC Web forum indefinitely
  • Banning from all access to BSAC-provided Web services

You may appeal against a decision to intervene by contacting a Web forum administrator using the Personal Messaging system provided by the forum software. If that does not result in satisfactory conclusion then the appeal may be escalated to the BSAC IT Team Leader by contacting BSAC HQ in the first instance.

Acceptable Use Guidance for Participants in the BSAC Web Forums

Language.

The language of the BSAC Web forum is English. Please try to write meaningfully in sentences with appropriate punctuation.

When using abbreviations please write out the phrase in full the first time you use it and follow it with the abbreviation in brackets, e.g. Branch Officers’ Handbook (BOH).

Please remember this is a diving forum. Non-diving posts are tolerated but they are not invited.

Please do not type your message in CAPITAL LETTERS AS IT IS VERY DIFFICULT TO READ.

Please keep swearing and innuendo to a minimum. Children are permitted to participate in the BSAC Web forums. As a rule of thumb if you are not prepared to say it front of your grandmother or 8 year old daughter please do not say it here.

Please try to keep things courteous and friendly at all times. Please show respect for others at all times. Please be mindful that your opinion may not be the opinion of others. Please be mindful that what you think is funny may be regarded as offensive by others.

Should you be tempted to post while over the Government's prescribed limits for alcohol it is highly recommended that you refrain until you have read your masterpiece the morning after.

Please avoid turning the forum into a chat system or private messaging system. Please keep others participants in mind and avoid private jokes and obtuse references that are not commonly recognised within the diving community.

Authentication and Registration

Participants in the BSAC Web forum are required to complete a registration process prior to their messages appearing on the forums. There is no right or entitlement to anonymity and participants in the BSAC Web forum are expected to complete the registration process in good faith.

Registrations made with the sole intention of soliciting business are unwelcome and may be deleted without notice.

Registrations made for the sole purpose of posting inflammatory material are unwelcome and may be deleted without notice.

On completion of the registration process a user profile will be created and associated with the participant where additional information may be recorded by the user or automatically by the forum software. Participants should be aware that information within their profile may be accessible by other forum participants and guests.

BSAC may operate restricted forums for the sole use of BSAC Members and other special interest groups. Users of these forums will be required to provide personal details which will appear in their user profile so that BSAC may prove that they are eligible to participate in such discussions. The use of personal details gathered by electronic means is covered by;

The BSAC Electronic Privacy Policy.

User Profile Information

Information provided by participants during registration or otherwise associated to their user profile may be displayed with each and every message submission.

User Names (mandatory)

All messages appearing on the Web forum will display the user-name selected by the individual submitting the message. User names that reflect the real name of the participant are preferred. The Moderators may be sympathetic to participants that have established an on-line identity under a handle or nick name. It is acceptable to append a handle or nick-name to the user name in brackets, e.g. Anne Other (Miss-Pollack).

User Name Subtext (mandatory)

A line of text may appear below a user name on each and every post made by a participant. This text is generated automatically to indicate the level of participation within the forum community. Examples include ‘New Member’ and ‘Senior Member’ The Moderators may be sympathetic to requests to change this text.

Signature blocks (optional)

A signature block is a piece of text that may be attached below each and every message submitted by a forum participant.

A signature block may contain a link to an external website.

Participants including links within their signature blocks are strongly encouraged wherever possible to ensure the site linked to provides a reciprocal link to the BSAC Website bsac.com

A signature block must be displayed no larger than the standard font size of the forum.

Participants may be asked to alter or remove signature blocks which in the opinion of the moderators do not comply with the BSAC Web Forum Acceptable Use Policy.

Participants may be asked to remove from their signature blocks links to sites which do not comply with the BSAC Web Forum Acceptable Use Policy.

Avatars (optional)

An Avatar is a small graphic which is displayed next to the user name on each and every post a participant makes. Participants may be asked to remove avatars that in the opinion of the Moderators do not comply with the BSAC Web forum Acceptable Use Policy.

Guidance on creating Avatars including limits on file size and maximum display size is provided elsewhere within the forum.

Additional Information

Additional information may be entered into a user profile and be read by other forum participants.

Some information must be entered to prove eligibility to participate in certain restricted BSAC Web forums.

Participants are encouraged to enter additional information which may help qualify their views and opinions to other forum participants. This may include but is not limited to; Location. Interests. Diving Qualifications. Diving Experience. Relationship to BSAC and any position of office that may be held within the organisation. Any relationship with a commercial organisation that is being represented.

Commercial Solicitation

Commercial and non-commercial advertisements are defined by the separate;

BSAC Electronic Advertising Policy.

Commercial Advertisements are the responsibility of the BSAC Web Advertising team.

Any right or entitlement to advertise within the BSAC Web forum will be granted by way of the Terms and Conditions of a commercial contract agreed with the BSAC Web Advertising team and issued by BSAC HQ. Please call +44 (0)151 350 6200 for further details.

All other commercial and non-commercial solicitations appearing on the Web forums are accepted at the sole discretion of the forum moderators as a gesture of goodwill.

It is permitted for participants to provide a link to their commercial services within their signature block, provided the general guidance on signatures is followed.

It is permitted for participants to submit a recommendation for diving related products and services offered by a commercial business provided that such recommendations are relevant to the forum topic and pertinent to the current thread of conversation and made within a single post. .

It is permitted for participants to submit a testimonial for a diving related product or service offered by a commercial business provided such testimonials are relevant to the forum topic and pertinent to the current thread of conversation and made within a single message submission.

It is permitted for participants representing businesses offering diving related products and services to announce such products and services provided such announcements are relevant to the forum topic and pertinent to the current thread of conversation and made within a single message submission.

For instance, a recommendation for a dive holiday which includes training may appear on the Travel forum OR the Training forum but not both. It is up to participants to decide where such posts are best placed.

No other commercial activities are invited or tolerated. Messages and submissions that are in the opinion of the Moderators connected with commercial activities may be removed by the Moderators without notice.

Specific examples of acceptable and unacceptable behaviour

Bumping is not invited by the Moderators.

Bumping is the practice of adding to a discussion thread a message with little or no content to raise the prominence of an earlier message or submission. Where a message or submission is specific to a date or time it is acceptable be bumped once and once only. It is up to participants of the forum to decide when might be an appropriate time to bump a message.

Assumption of bad practise is not invited by the moderators

From time to time a participant in the forum may ask a question that is phrased in such a way that other participants are inclined to assume that the person is in some way deficient in technique, attitude or approach. The Moderators respectfully ask that all participants avoid jumping to such conclusions when they have no evidence to support or where they are unwilling to make such evidence available to all other forum participants.

For example any response which can be interpreted as ‘If you were a better flippin diver/instructor/branch officer/BSAC member (delete as appropriate)’ is unacceptable.

Participation in the forums is actively encouraged by the Moderators

The Moderators for whatever reason have decided that the BSAC web forums provide a benefit to BSAC members and others that is worthy of their support by way of volunteering their time at no cost to BSAC or BSAC members. The Moderators would like to remind all participants and particularly those representing BSAC that they do not wish to see anyone discouraged from participating in the forums.

We are not all virtual divers, geeks and sad individuals with no real friends. The internet is a part of modern society and internet forums another method by which perfectly normal people may keep in touch. Learn to live with it, we have!

Questions are invited by the Moderators even when they have been asked before

From time to time participants in the forum may see questions being asked that have been asked and answered at a previous time. The Moderators respectfully ask that these questions are tolerated by the more established forum participants. It is up to individual participants of the forum to decide whether or not they wish to answer a question however many times it may have been asked before.

Questions are invited by the Moderators even when an answer may appear elsewhere

From time to time a participant in the forum may ask a question for which the answer is freely available elsewhere or by way of a simple query to a search engine. The Moderators would like to point out that we do not care. Participants are invited to ask whatever questions they like and other participants may choose to answer those questions as and when they see fit. Helping people can be enjoyable and rewarding. The Moderators have no wish to see participants discouraged or obstructed from doing so.

The Moderators are not the thought police.

The forums provide an inexpensive and accessible medium by which BSAC may observe a cross section of BSAC members and other divers expressing their opinions informally. It is natural for those who may wish to criticise BSAC policy to bring attention to their plight by participating in the forums. It is essential for BSAC to have the opportunity to hear it’s critics and so may evolve dynamically to serve better both BSAC members and the diving community in general.

The Moderators do not wish to discourage anyone from reasonable and polite discussion of diving related matters. The Moderators have every faith that the forum community is able to judge participants on the merits of their submissions.

It is unacceptable for any forum participant to label another as Anti-BSAC on the basis of what may appear in an informal submission to the BSAC web forums. The Moderators may take the view that such accusations are prejudicial in nature and ask for them to be removed.

The Moderators request that representatives of BSAC remain mindful of their positions.

The Moderators wish to treat all BSAC members participating in the forum as equally as possible. Standing within the BSAC will not be considered in the course of moderating the forums.

Those of sufficient standing within BSAC should be mindful that their position could infer privilege. Criticism of individuals from such a position may be perceived as unacceptably prejudicial or harassing behaviour.

With great power comes great responsibility!