Terms and Conditions
1. Purpose of the Community
The purpose of the Versus Arthritis online community is to provide a safe place for people to share information and support each other through personal experiences of living with arthritis and arthritis problems.
The community is not a suitable place to obtain medical advice and should not be used as a substitute for personalised or specific advice from a qualified medical practitioner or other relevant professional. We strongly recommend that you consult your own doctor, nurse or other relevant professional about your personal circumstances before making any decisions that could affect you or others.
Acceptance of terms
The Versus Arthritis online community is for people with arthritis to support one another online. Only registered users can post on the community. In registering to use the community you agree to these Community Terms and Conditions and the Terms and Conditions of our website.
Posting on the community
Do not post or private message any material which may be discriminatory or cause offence, in particular on the grounds of an individual's sex, race, religion or belief, ethnic or national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability or working status.
You may not use the online community to post or private message any material or links to any material which is knowingly false and/or defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, harassing, obscene, profane, threatening or otherwise in violation of the law.
Advertisements, chain letters, pyramid schemes and solicitations are inappropriate and are not permitted.
You agree not to participate in malicious behaviour which causes damage or may cause damage to Versus Arthritis or this site or any of the computer systems on which this site resides.
You must be over 18 years of age in to participate in the Versus Arthritis online community. If you are under this age, please do not try to access the community.
Studies and Research
We do not allow any surveys or information gathering for the purposes of marketing or commercial enterprise unless posted by Versus Arthritis.
Please note that under our terms and conditions, you are not permitted to solicit members through our forums or private messages to ask them to take part in your study.
For students: Unfortunately, we are unable to accept requests to post student projects. Please note that under our terms and conditions you are not permitted to post requests on the community or to solicit members through our community or private message to take part in your study.
Your privacy and data protection
All data will be securely stored by Vanilla Forums (Canada)
When registering, you will be asked to select a username. If you wish to stay anonymous on the forum, please pick a username that does not divulge your identity (such as using your first name and surname as your username).
We ask you to provide your email address when you register so we can identify you and contact you about administrative issues and changes to the forum. If you would prefer a different method of communication, please contact us via email at [email protected]
Linked to this, we will keep a record of your engagement with us via the online community and may perform administrative actions to ensure our systems are handling such records correctly. We will not use your identifiable personal data for other purposes unless you also access other services, make a donation or consent to receiving regular updates or consent to be contacted about our wider activities, although we may periodically cross-reference your membership of the online community with these other purposes. How we use your data in these circumstances is set out in our Privacy Notice at www.versusarthritis.org/privacy
You can also read how we keep your details safe and about your rights under Data Protection Law.
2. Copyright and third-party rights
You agree that you will not use the Versus Arthritis online community to post or private message any copyright material or intellectual property that is not your own without the express permission of the copyright or intellectual property holder.
You may add links to internal or external sites within your post or private messages, but you agree to remain responsible for any links you add. We reserve the right to remove any links on the public forum that we consider inappropriate.
Any links to sites relating to medical research or medications or similar must only be to credible information sites, eg those ending in .ac .nhs .edu .org Please don’t post links to any site with a .com address in this respect.
If you mention any person by name, please make sure you have their agreement to do so. Similarly, if you upload or post any links to photos you must ensure you have the permission of person who owns the photos and of any people who are in the photos.
Please note that third parties services used by Versus Arthritis across all of our digital platforms and services (including, for example, advertising networks and providers of external services like web traffic analysis services) may also have cookies, over which we have no direct control, but need to use on our digital platforms to deliver the service. The function of these cookies are likely to be analytical/performance or targeting/remarketing cookies.
3. Moderation of the online community
You may contact us at any time. The community is moderated seven days a week and we endeavour to help as quickly as we possibly can.
Our team of moderators ensure that the community is a safe and friendly place to get the support you need. The team monitors the forum and reads posts. Any posts that we feel are inappropriate will be removed and we will always contact users with an explanation should we need to do this.
Flaming and trolling are not allowed, these are posts that are deliberately angry or provocative.
Anybody who spams the community with sales, products promoting arthritis cures or, unrelated or offensive materials will be banned from the community.
The moderators also monitor the forum for adult safeguarding reasons – signs of distress or potential harm to members – and may contact members or in extreme cases refer a concern to appropriate authorities.
4. Your promise to us
Any claim, liability, cost, damage or loss we may incur (including, without limitation legal costs) as a result of any material you post on our forum or privately message to another Versus Arthritis member will result in your access suspended from the online community. Any violation by you of your obligations under these terms and conditions will result in being banned from the online community.
5. Exclusion of liability
Versus Arthritis hereby excludes all and any losses, liabilities, claims, damages, expenses or costs (whether as a consequence of its negligence or otherwise) arising in connection with:
- your use or inability to use the forum
- any unauthorised access to or alterations of information provided by you
- and shall not be limited to the above