SDCBA Listserv Rules 


Listserv Rules

Purpose: The SDCBA provides electronic listservs to its Sections, Committees, and Divisions as a means to help foster collaboration, inspire civil discourse, encourage mentorship and legal training, promote community service, and serve as a forum for meaningful dialogue related to the practice of law among members of those communities. Listserv members may use their respective listserv in a manner that serves the interests of the listserv community noted above and is consistent with this Policy.

Participation: Subject to the limitations in this Policy or this Policy Manual, any member of a Section, Committee, or Division may participate in its respective listserv.

Indemnity: Any person using an SDCBA listserv agrees to defend, indemnify, and hold the SDCBA (and its Directors, Officers, Internal Team, and Section, Committee, or Division leadership) harmless from and against any damages arising out of, relating to,  or resulting from that person’s online conduct on a listserv.

Self-Monitored Communities:  Discussion on SDCBA listservs is primarily generated and monitored by the members of each listserv. Neither the SDCBA’s Board nor Internal Team actively monitors the listservs. If an issue arises, a listserv member should address it first with Section, Committee, or Division leadership. However, the SDCBA may directly address profane or disruptive behavior if the Board or Internal Team notices such conduct or if such conduct is brought to their attention.

Approved Uses of Listservs: The following are approved uses of the SDCBA’s listservs provided that such use adheres to this Policy, the SDCBA’s Core Values, and the SDCBA’s Attorney Civility and Practice Guidelines:

a. Discussing legal- or practice-related topics that may be of interest to the Section, Committee, or Division, including relevant area(s) of law, or common issues, practices, questions, or news that relates to or impacts practitioners in that area of law.

b. Sharing information about CLE or other educational programs or events hosted by organizations other than the SDCBA, provided that:

                                  i. The hosting or sponsoring organization is (1) the State Bar of California; (2) the California Lawyers Association; (3) the American Bar Association; (4) an accredited law school; (5) an approved Law‐Related Organization; or (6) the SDCBA, Board, Internal Team, or a Section, Committee, or Division.

                                ii. The content or topic of the program does not overlap in nature or timing with a program hosted or sponsored by the SDCBA (including events hosted or sponsored by a Section, Committee, or Division). 

                               iii. The program or event does not take place within 30 days of a similar SDCBA program or event (so that marketing for the external program does not compete with the SDCBA’s marketing efforts for its own programs).

                               iv. Failure to adhere to the above requirements regarding educational programs or events not sponsored by the SDCBA may, in the discretion of the Board or the President in consultation with the Executive Director and Chair of the Governance Committee, result in removal from the listservs.

c. Promoting community service or volunteer opportunities provided that those opportunities either (1) are sponsored by the SDCBA or a Section, Committee, or Division; (2) are related to legal issues, the practice of law, or educating the public about the law; or (3) have a significant connection to the law (e.g., seeking volunteers for election day poll observers). However, the listservs cannot be used to promote any fundraising aspect of a community service event or volunteer opportunity unless the fundraising aspect is compliant with the Fundraising Policy (including that the recipient of any fundraising is the San Diego County Bar Foundation).

d. Announcing office space for lease.

e. Announcing job openings in the legal industry, including job postings for attorneys, paralegals, law clerks, and legal assistants.

f. Requesting referrals for attorneys who practice in a particular area of law, or for experts, consultants, or other persons with specialized education, training, skill, licensure, or experience.

Prohibited Uses of Listservs: The following types of conduct are prohibited on any SDCBA listserv, and engaging in such conduct is a violation of this Policy:

a. Posting any unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, pornographic, profane, annoying, vexing, harassing, or otherwise objectionable information of any kind, which includes (without limitation) any transmission  that constitutes or encourages conduct that would (1) constitute a criminal offense; (2) give rise to civil liability (including violations of applicable antitrust or unfair competition law); (3) violate any local, state, national, or international law or regulation; (4) violate any third-party rights (e.g., licensing or intellectual property protections); or (5) violate any standards established by third-party standing setting organizations or bodies (e.g., standards related to account, financial reporting, product quality, etc.).

b. Promoting any fundraising efforts or soliciting donations unless (1) the beneficiary is the San Diego County Bar Foundation (the charitable arm of the SDCBA); or (2) the effort has been pre-approved by the SDCBA.

c. Encouraging or soliciting others to engage in anti‐competitive activities, including the exchange of attorney rate information.

d. Publishing or re-posting any listserv message outside of the listserv community to which it was originally sent, or forwarding any listserv message to a non‐SDCBA member, particularly where the original message or any reply messages may have an effect on a pending or anticipated legal proceeding or transaction. Listserv postings may be republished or forwarded with the consent of the author (including any replies to the original post).

e. Advertising or otherwise engaging in commercial use of a listserv—such as using the listservs to exchange services, materials, or software in return for payment of any sort (including trade of like items, special discounts, cash, in-kind items of value, etc.)—unless otherwise permitted by this Policy Manual or approved by the Board.

Prohibition on Public Positions, Comments, or Endorsements: Pursuant to the SDCBA’s Public Positions & Comments Policies (see Policy Manual, Section 3), Sections, Committees, and Divisions, including their respective leadership and constituent members, shall not do any of the following in the name of or on behalf of the SDCBA (or any Section, Committee, or Division), on a listserv or otherwise, without the approval of the Board:

  1. Take any public position on, make any public comment regarding, or endorse, support, oppose, or otherwise advocate for or against:
    1. Political candidates running for any office (regardless of whether the office is partisan);
    2. Ballot measures (including propositions, initiatives, or referenda);
    3. Any proposed legislation;
    4. Any proposed governmental action; or
    5. Any public policy matter.

b. Endorse, support, oppose, or otherwise advocate for or against any candidate running for the Board, or for any Section, Committee, or Division leadership position, or for any leadership position in a Law-Related Organization, regardless of the candidate’s membership in the SDCBA or any Section, Committee, or Division.

Election Campaigns for SDCBA or Law-Related Organizations: Separate rules govern how candidates may campaign for the Board; for any Section, Committee, or Division leadership position; or for any volunteer leadership position in a Law-Related Organization. 

Any member who is running in any of the above elections may use the listservs as follows:

a. With the pre‐approval of the Executive Director, to announce the member’s candidacy one time for the Board, and to seek the support of the listserv constituency (but not its endorsement).[1]

b. To announce the member’s candidacy one time for a leadership position within a Section, Committee, or Division, provided that the member posts the candidacy announcement only to the listserv for the Section, Committee, or Division to which the member seeks election.

c. With the pre‐approval of the Executive Director, to announce the member’s candidacy one time for a Law-Related Organization’s board or other volunteer leadership position, and to seek the support of the listserv constituency (but not its endorsement).

Only listserv participants who are candidates in an election may use the listservs to promote their own individual candidacies, subject to the limitations herein. Listserv participants who are not running in the election shall not use the listservs to post information about, or advocate for or against, any candidate running in the election.

Removal from Listservs: The SDCBA reserves the right to remove any person from any listserv at any time if that person’s conduct (1) is unprofessional, profane, or disruptive; (2) violates this Policy or any other applicable SDCBA policy; or (3) does not adhere to the SDCBA’s Core Values, or the SDCBA’s Attorney Civility and Practice Guidelines (which set forth the Association’s standards of civility, integrity, and professionalism).

Listserv Violation Procedures

As self-monitored communities, issues that arise on a listserv—e.g., improper use or content, incivility, or failure to adhere to the Listserv Policy—should be addressed to the respective Section, Committee, or Division leadership.

Section, Committee, and Division leaders should:

a. Contact the offending individual directly.

b. Share the Listserv Policy with the entire listserv community.

c. Review prior violations of the Listserv Policy by the offending individual.

d. Determine if the violation merits potential removal from the listserv, and if so, make a recommendation to the Executive Director and Chair of the Governance Committee. In most instances, Section, Committee, and Division leaders should provide at least one warning to a listserv member prior to recommending removal from the listserv.

The SDCBA will review any recommendation to remove an individual from a listserv, and may take whatever action it deems appropriate given the circumstances. 

In its discretion, the SDCBA may immediately suspend a member’s listserv privileges pending investigation.

[1] Internal Reference: The Executive Director’s standing practice has been to approve, in advance, each Board candidate’s one-time use of the listservs pursuant to this Policy.  Accordingly, Board candidates need not seek specific approval from the Executive Director to announce their candidacies provided that the announcements comply with this Policy.

SDCBA Social Media Terms of Use

Nothing posted on the SDCBA's social media pages is meant to constitute legal advice or to imply there is a business, personal, or attorney-client relationship with any fan or follower.  We assume no responsibility for any postings or their content. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message.

By using social media related to the SDCBA, you agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, defamatory, knowingly false, inaccurate, hateful, threatening, harassing, invasive of a person’s privacy, sexually-oriented or any other material that may violate any applicable laws. You agree not to post any advertisements or solicitations of business.  The reproduction of published materials, even from internet websites, is not permitted.  You agree not to post any copyrighted material unless the copyrighted material is posted with permission.  Doing any of the foregoing may lead to a ban from the  use of the SDCBA's social media mediums. We reserve the right to reveal your identity in the event of a complaint or legal action arising from any message posted by you.

You agree to indemnify and hold harmless the Association and its affiliates, and their respective members, directors, officers, managers, employees, shareholders, agents, and licensors, from and against all losses, expenses, damages and costs, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, resulting from any violation by you of our terms of use.

We do not actively monitor or review all  postings, however, the administrator and moderators of this page have the right to remove, edit, move or close any topic at any time as they see fit.  As a user you agree to any information you have entered on this site being stored in a database. You acknowledge that all posts made to this site express the views and opinions of the author and not the SDCBA or its staff members or any entity associated therewith and hence we will not be held liable for any such postings.

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You agree that we may modify the terms of use  (or discontinue our use of this site or page) in our sole discretion, without advance notice, and that your right to access this site is conditioned on an ongoing basis with your compliance with the then-current version of these Terms and Conditions.  You should therefore visit this page frequently.

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