Listserv Policy & Rules

NELA/NY Listserv Policy

Welcome and thank you for being part of the NELA/NY Listserv Community!
The mission of NELA/NY is to advance the rights of employees, to combat and prevent workplace discrimination and to promote diversity, equality and inclusion within the legal profession and its own membership. The listserv is a collegial and supportive forum to further workers’ rights and for the professional development of our membership through the exchange of information, opinion, ideas, strategies and evolving trends in employment law.
We aspire to create a space to discuss and coalesce around strategies to achieve our mission, to offer resources to assist you in your employment law practice, to mentor new lawyers to the field, and to foster community. Listserv users are urged to periodically familiarize themselves with this Policy and to follow it, so as to avoid the necessity of Board involvement in adjudicating alleged Policy violations, which is a difficult, time consuming task for Board members. In accordance with these values below are rules, guidelines and procedures to ensure the best possible experience for all listserv users.
 
Rules  
 
1. The listserv may only be used by NELA/NY members. Sharing listserv emails with non- NELA/NY members is prohibited unless you first get the permission of the person who made the post. 
 
2. The principal purpose of this listserv is to communicate regarding issues that are related to promoting the rights of employees and the practice of plaintiff's-side employment law. Please mark postings that don’t fit this description as “OT” or Off Topic.
 
3. Student members are reminded that they may not use the listserv or maintain their NELA/NY membership in the event they begin working or interning for a law firm, which has an employment practice that is more than 50 percent employer-side.
 
4. Postings concerning representation of employers or on behalf of individuals aligned with employers are prohibited.
 
5. Do not disparage people, their firms, or who a member of their firm represents.
 
6. Do not make negative statements about judges, arbitrators, mediators, counsel, clients or former clients on the listserv.
 
7. Do not refer to people by their sexual orientation, religion, race, national origin, disability, sex, age or membership in any other protected class, except as necessary to frame legal issues. 
 
8. Do not use any slurs on the listserv. While slurs are a part of our practice as employment law attorneys, reading and hearing them still offends and upsets people. Case discussions, including excerpts from decisions, which require inclusion of the use of a slur should substitute the actual slur with the word “[insert protected class] discriminatory slur.” If you still feel it is essential to obtaining feedback on your post, please move that aspect of your conversation offline.
 
9. Do not call out the violation or perceived violation on the listserv because criticizing a post often inflames discussions. Please report violations or perceived violations of listserv rules to a Board member.
  
10. Messages sent to the listserv cannot contain any picture image (including jpeg and gif files) and cannot exceed 1 megabyte in size. Members can get around this problem by posting messages directly at www.Trialsmith.com. Follow instructions to post a message or call 1-800- 443-1757 for assistance. 
 
Guidelines
 
The following are important guidelines to consider before posting on the NELA/NY Listserv:
 
1. Respect others. Focus on the content of posts and not on the people making them. There’s no such thing as a “stupid question.” Trust that members post questions because they genuinely do not know the answer to a question and/or need help in finding or learning how to find the answers.
 
2. Prior to posting, consider whether your post may offend or dissuade members from participating because your post ridicules, invites ridicule or is condescending in tone.
 
3. If you would not say something in person to a member, do not write it on the listserv.
 
4. Please use caution when posting satire and jokes, as your sense of humor may not be shared and often does not translate in electronic communications.
 
5. Keep your posts focused on issues and questions. Disagree professionally and courteously if you disagree with a statement or fact. Insults, name-calling, or ad hominem attacks of others are prohibited.
 
6. Consider whether posts cross from responding to the initial post into chats among a handful of members, and whether the response would be best sent privately to sender.
 
7. There is no privilege that attaches to the listserv. Do not post information that you do not want opposing counsel, a governmental agency or the court to know, as leaks have been known to occur.
 
8. When you are in an adversarial posture with another NELA member, do not post about that matter. Similarly, if you become aware that a NELA member will be in an adverse posture, alert that member privately.
 
9. To send an email to the entire listserv, send to: nela@lists.trialsmith.com. To reply to the sender only, press "reply privately". When you "reply" to an email from the listserv, emails are sent to the entire listserv. PLEASE BE MINDFUL that your email will reach hundreds of members, so think of the value of your email when you press REPLY versus “REPLY PRIVATELY”.
 
10. Please use appropriate subject matter line for ease of search later on.
 
Procedures

The use of the NELA/NY listserv is a privilege. NELA/NY's Executive Board (“Board”) reserves the right to enforce the guidelines and rules in this policy, including by terminating the thread of post(s), attempting to resolve the conflict informally or by temporarily suspending or revoking listserv access. The steps and procedures are further described below.
 
1. Please report suspected violations of listserv rules directly to at least one member of the Executive Committee (i.e., the officers of the Board, including the President, Vice President, Second Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer). If a member of the Board is contacted, s/he will refer it to an Executive Committee member. Please do not call out a suspected rule violation on the list serv itself. Contact information for all Board members is listed on the NELA/NY website.
 
2. When an Officer posts on a listserv thread stating that they are “terminating this thread due to a possible violation of listserv rules,” no more posts may be made to that thread. Anyone who posts thereafter may be subject to discipline. Where discipline is imposed, the Executive Committee and/or full Board will promptly review the matter to make a final determination on the subject. An Officer will obtain the agreement of at least one other Board member before shutting down a thread, if at all practicable.
 
3. Separately, if the Board finds a post to be in violation of listserv Rules, they will try to resolve the conflict informally by facilitating dialogue between interested parties. At the same time, members are on notice that violations are subject to remedial action that may range anywhere from a warning to a suspension and/or revocation of privileges. 
 
4. The Board may immediately temporarily suspend and/or revoke listserv privileges by a majority vote of the executive committee which consists of the elected officers of the Board, if such ongoing use is believed to be in violation of these rules, is undermining the purpose of the listserv or is otherwise disruptive or detrimental to NELA/NY’s mission or reputation.  
 
5. When a user is placed on temporary suspension and/or revocation as set forth above, the Board will provide such member with written notice of the specific nature of their offense or infraction and afforded an opportunity to be heard at the next board meeting relative to the facts that gave rise to the temporary suspension and/or revocation. 
 
6. In executive session, the Board will then be afforded an opportunity to discuss/debate the alleged offending member’s position and the reasons or basis for suspension and/or revocation. The Board shall then vote on whether to continue the suspension and/or revocation for a specified period or to restore a member’s listserv access immediately. Any sanction shall be by majority vote of the then present, whether participating in person or telephonically, Board members. Any determination shall be communicated to the member in a reasonably timely manner with an explanation as to the reason(s) and duration of such suspension and/or revocation, if any. 
 
7. The Board vote shall be confidential as to how each member votes. If the Board vote ends in a tie, such tie shall be broken by a second vote of the officers then participating. If the officer’s vote ends in a tie, then the President shall cast the tie-breaking vote. 
 
Disclaimer: This is not a moderated listserv. The statements and/or views expressed by listserv participants do not necessarily reflect the views of NELA/NY. If you would like to participate in our listserv, have any questions or concerns or need further assistance, please contact the Executive Director, Roseni Plaza, at nelany@nelany.com.