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OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org Mailing List
Purpose and Ground Rules (Version 1, December 03, 1996) ©1996, OLM
I. Purpose of the OLM organization
OnLine Ministry (OLM) is an association of members of the church of Christ who help one
another with online outreach and edification, and the technologies which enable these ministries.
Outreach - Ministries directed at teaching, converting and serving the lost.
Ministries directed at edifying and providing resources for members of the Lord's church.
OLM currently supports this mission with four mailing lists:
OLM@olm.org - outreach and edification (This Document)
OLM-Technology@olm.org - technology
OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org - Biblical and doctrinal issues of online ministry
II. Purpose of the OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org mailing list
The purpose of the OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org mailing list is to serve as an informal forum
where members of OLM may discuss Biblical and doctrinal issues and questions that arise while doing
III. Ground Rules of OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org
- We will focus OLM-Biblical-Issues@olm.org on Biblical and doctrinal issues and questions that
arise while doing online ministry. We will not use this as an open forum in which to bring up and
discuss just any Biblical or doctrinal issue or question. The discussions will center on sharing
apologetics, Biblical insights, church experiences, ideas, information and resources useful for reaching
the lost and edifying the church online. Occasional personal messages of Christian fellowship (prayer
requests, encouragement, etc.) are acceptable in this list, because we know and care for each other.
However, most of our personal contact with one another will be conducted via private email.
- When we start a discussion we will clearly state or define how our questions and discussions are
related to online ministry. Discussions that are not directly related to online ministry will be
discontinued. The list owner (list moderator) is authorized to remove any subscriber who violates
this rule, and has final say in these matters.
- We will move discussions which evolve into deeper aspects of online technology and the
"how to" of online outreach and edification to the appropriate companion list (see above).
The list owner (list moderator) is authorized to remove any subscriber who violates this rule, and has
final say in these matters.
- We will treat each other with love and respect on this mailing list. We will not say anything in
email we would not say to the person face-to-face. We will remember we are talking with people
not machines. We will speak carefully and listen forgivingly. We will allow diverse personalities to
communicate on equal footing with one another. We will not display hostile attitudes or make
accusations. We will never engage in personal attacks. We will quickly move discussions which become
personal or argumentative to private email. Flagrant or repeat violators of this rule may be banned
from the list. The list owner (list moderator) is authorized to remove any subscriber who violates this
rule, and has final say in these matters.
- We will continuously and graciously answer questions from new subscribers even though it may
be the eighth time the question has been asked in the last week! We will be patient, knowing that
not everyone is on our personal page or schedule. We understand it is the intention of this mailing
list to be overly patient and kind, learning and helping one another with online ministry for outreach
- We understand it is possible there will be several simultaneous conversations (or threads)
occurring at one time in this mailing list. Some of those conversations may not be personally
important to me. We will simply ignore messages which are not of interest and glean the best from
all of the discussions -- the delete key is our friend!
- We will "catch up" on a discussion in progress before posting replies. We will avoid
posting "Me Too" messages, where content is limited to agreement with previous posts.
- We will respect each other's privacy. We will keep private communication private. We will not
quote, reply to, or in any other manner discuss email received in private from list members and list
moderators (or anyone else for that matter!). In addition we will send private email when an answer
to a question is for one person only. However, we won't hesitate to post to the list something we
think of general interest to list members.
- We will not automatically or on any regular basis mirror or "gate" messages on this
list to other electronic or print forums. This includes a ban on gating to usenet news groups or web
page discussion forums. However we may on occasion forward individual messages of interest to
other forums or individuals.
- We will be careful when using the auto-reply feature of our email systems, because we know that
a reply to a list message will go to every member of the mailing list. We will also try to avoid
accidentally sending a personal response to all subscribers of the list, thereby embarrassing all
involved. If necessary, we will type in the correct address instead of relying on "reply."
- We will let the List-Owner moderate; we won't try to do his job for him. If we feel we must say
something in response to "off-topic" or disruptive messages, we will first get approval
from the list owner via private email.
(Much of this material is from "A Brief Introduction to Private Email Netiquette" Pete Holzmann 12/95)
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