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September 30, 2023, 01:42:14 pm

Author Topic: IMPORTANT: New policy regarding discussions of organisations  (Read 1814 times)  Share 

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IMPORTANT: New policy regarding discussions of organisations
« on: October 12, 2013, 02:01:14 am »
In light of certain recent events, we are implementing a new policy regarding discussions of educational institutions and businesses.

ATAR Notes is first and foremost a website for students. It is intended to be a forum where students can speak their mind. Certain limits are obviously imposed on this right - for example, racism, sexism, homophobia and so on are not allowed - but otherwise we encourage students to see ATAR Notes as a safe haven for expressing their views on the things that are important to them.

Considered and politely-expressed opinions on schools and businesses are welcome. We will never censor an opinion about any institution or business that is supported by evidence or personal experience and is not unnecessarily vitriolic.*

It has come to our attention that recently, a certain school has pressured a student into silencing their views on various aspects of that school. While that matter has now been resolved, we will make it clear right now that in future, this kind of intimidation will not be tolerated.**

If you are being bullied, threatened or otherwise pressured by anyone due to things you have said on this website, whether it be your principal, teacher, employer or an employee of a business, I strongly encourage you to contact me via PM or my email address (nina[at]atarnotes.com) and we will do our best to help you. Our policy in these matters is always to take the student's side until further information is available.

To schools and businesses: we will not hesitate to make public announcements to name and shame you if you attempt to engage in such intimidation. Remember that any such announcements will come up in future Google searches, as dodgy "businesses" attempting to scam students on this website in the past will attest to. We strongly suggest that you consider the potential damage to your reputation, and that taking on constructive criticism and improving your processes would be a far better use of your time than trying to bully students and customers into silence.

For those companies pathetic enough to threaten teenagers and young adults with legal action: truth is a complete defence to defamation both at common law and under statute. Honest opinion is also a defence, as long as the statement is expressed as an opinion rather than fact. I absolutely despise those who misuse the law as an intimidation tool and I will see to it that any attempts to do so are publicised via every medium possible.

*Note however that our privacy policy still applies to individuals. Please do not discuss people, whether students, teachers or otherwise, by name. (NB: moderators will have discretion on this. For example, you also cannot discuss someone through their clearly identifying features so that anyone who knows the person will know who you are talking about.)

**This unfortunate event is also a good reminder to be very careful what potentially identifying information you make available. The more information about yourself you divulge (even seemingly innocent things like your name or your school), the more traceable you become. We will do our best to protect you from any consequences of your words, but that is not always possible and it is best that you take steps to avoid such consequences in the first place.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2013, 03:17:16 pm by ninwa »
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