Netiquette Guidelines Print E-mail

The EEAC mailing lists are support group forums for people who are interested in adopting or have adopted children from Eastern European countries. Others who are sympathetic to the problems and issues that these families are facing are also welcome.

EEAC, Inc. reserves the right to establish or change subscription requirements and to regulate behavior of subscribers to ensure smooth operation and civil exchange of information and opinions. Deliberate or persistently negligent misuse of the list by a list subscriber (or someone using that person's subscription) may result in suspension of posting privileges or permanent expulsion from the list.

In addition to these guidelines, please review our Terms of Service and our Privacy Policy.

Our netiquette guidelines are by no means exhaustive, but they do represent several years' worth of list administration. We expect subscribers of any of the EEAC lists to abide by these our Terms of Service and netiquette guidelines.

EEAC, Inc. wishes to emphasize the issue of courtesy to others in preparing and sending your postings. We urge you to print and keep this for future reference and to consider these netiquette guidelines in every message you post to the list.

Solicitations to the Mailing List
How to Reply to a Posted Message
Make Subject Line Relevant
Consider Audience
Check Message Before Posting
Final Words of Advice
EEAC Contact Information
Get Guidelines Via Email


Solicitations of any kind are not permitted unless approved by EEAC. Solicitations include (but are not limited to) product advertisements, notifications of waiting children, agency advertisements (including price structure), solicitations to join a group, or entreaties for funds or goods. It does not matter whether or not you are profiting from the solicitation.

If you do have a solicitation you would like to post, you must first request permission to post. Please send all such requests to the special address This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . If permission is granted, you will be provided a statement that must accompany that posting so that other subscribers understand that you have been granted permission, but that the EEAC permission does not constitute an endorsement. This is a very sensitive area and we are very serious about it.

Violations of this solicitations rule may result in immediate and permanent expulsion from the list.

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When you receive a message from the list, the author/sender/etc. is the mailer for the individual message or digest, NOT the person that submitted the message to the mailing list.

Please review the sample below. First note the "Reply-To:" line. If you use any of your e-mail software's "Reply to" options, you will send your message to a special autoresponder address. This sends you detailed instructions on how to prepare a message reply. It also discards your message, so, if you have not kept a copy of it, your message text will be lost. If you intend the message to go to just the original poster, you will find her/his e-mail address in the "From" line.

Sender: An EEAC List
From: Mary Adopter
Subject: [EEAC-RL] We accepted a referral!

This affects you when you intend to answer only to the original poster (Dear So-And-So posting). Unfortunately, hitting "Reply to" in these cases will cause your message to be discarded.

For a message that is personal, that is, directed at one person, you should create a NEW message and send it to the address in the "From" line. This netiquette guideline applies to all messages that have a salutation starting with a person's name (Hi Mary, Mary, Dear Mary, etc.) If you want to reply to the whole list about something an individual posted because you feel that it is relevant to everyone, then you should create a new message that has a brief cut-and-paste from the previous message (Mary said. . . . ).

If you need assistance in knowing how to address personal messages, please seek help from us This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or from a friend who knows how to post.

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We realize that many times you are responding to previous messages. It is helpful in understanding your response if you quote a brief part of the original message. However, it is unnecessary and aggravating to many to have to reread the entire original message. (This goes along with Guideline #1.)

Probably 95 percent of you are using some version of Windows or M operating systems. If you don't already know how, please learn to use the Copy, Cut and Paste tools. If you insist on using a "Reply to" option, scroll through the original message and delete all material that is not relevant to your response, including the Instructions banner (the header/footer information about sign-off, etc.) which is included on each message. You can insert your comments immediately following the relevant portions of the original message. If you prepare your response as a "New Message", you can copy the portions you want to address from the original message and paste them into your message.

DO NOT repast anything from the list without prior permission from the EEAC, Inc. and the original poster. The same rule should be applied to private correspondence from one list subscriber to another; you should not send that person's private posting to you or to anyone else. While the Internet is not secure and confidentiality is difficult to maintain, we can use common courtesy (and common sense) guidelines; when something is sent privately, assume that it is meant to be kept as such.

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You should write a subject line that announces the message content. Many list subscribers prefer not to read every single individual or digest message they receive. So they scan the subject lines looking for messages in which they are interested. When they see a subject line that says "Re: [A-PARENT-RUSS] Digest - 27 August-2005 - Special Issue", they have no way to tell what that message is about. If you have used this option, please edit the Subject line changing it to reflect its relevance to the original message, e.g., "Re: Family Picnics". If you are preparing a new message, you have control over what you enter in the Subject line. Please use the same guideline. Also, if you are receiving the list in digest form, you can see in the Topics section how many messages there are on a particular subject, e.g., Customs Question (3).

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As noted previously, we consider the people on our mailing lists to be part of a far-flung community brought together through the Internet. With that in mind, we ask that you remember, in any community, differing values and perspectives may coexist on a relatively peaceful plane. Presumably, everyone on our lists is there because of some involvement with Eastern European adoption, and that means that they must share some values to begin with. However, with any group of people, sometimes misunderstandings or disagreements can occur.

Every time you submit a message to the list, you are sending it to an audience of hundreds and possibly thousands people. Every one has the capability not only to read your message but to forward it to any number of other people. Language tone and style are difficult to interpret over the Internet. While you may think you are being clever, someone else may take your words to be an insult. Please state your ideas simply and clearly, rather than in an abstract fashion. Always consider your audience and your goals as you compose your message. Are you trying to pass on information? Are you attempting to gather information? Are you seeking advice or a virtual "shoulder to lean on?" Quite often, unnecessary confusion or difficulties occur because of a "simple" misunderstanding of the tone being used. A check of your language before you post might point up ideas that could be put in a clearer fashion.

Of course, "flaming" (or acting in an uncivil fashion) is NEVER an approved mode of communication, either on a public list or in a private message. We cannot regulate what people say to each other privately, but we CAN and WILL stop anyone who abuses others on our list. Flaming might include (but not be limited to) name calling, derision of others' ideas or messages, questioning administrator's actions, and the like. Should the administrators believe that a message sent is a flame, the originator will immediately be subject to sanctions until the situation has been resolved.

Don't include in your message anything you don't want repeated. We are aware of situations where agencies who monitor a list have copied list subscribers' postings and/or threatened the subscribers from posting. Hopefully, most of us have cordial and cooperative relationships with our agencies. However, this is not always the case. We suggest that anyone who is aware of this type of problem should contact the EEAC list administrators at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Please carefully consider what you are writing. You are not sitting across the table from one person, or talking on the phone. You are addressing that figurative auditorium full of people. Compose your messages on that basis.

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By re-reading your message before you send it, you will avoid many of the problems addressed by the guidelines discussed above.

First, check the Subject Line. Is it relevant to the subject in your message?

Second, read the body of your message. Does it make sense? Does it say what you want it to? Check your spelling and punctuation. While there probably are a few English teachers out there who would like to grade your message, they aren't really going to. It should look at least comparable to anything you would submit to a newspaper or magazine as a letter to the editor.

Third, consider again whether you want to send this message to over hundreds to thousands of people, or to only one person.

Fourth, if your email program has spell check, consider using it. A properly spelled message is one which receives more appropriate attention.

Fifth, make sure you are sending the message you wish to send. Does the tone convey the content in the way you want? Have you considered the vast, diverse, multinational audience which subscribes to this list?

Finally, scroll through the entire message. If you do this, it should be obvious where you have quoted entire digests or messages that you didn't intend to. You can use this as an opportunity to delete everything that is not relevant.

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  • Don't post administrative requests (sign-off, change list modes, change email addresses) - instead send the question to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or one of the list administrators. Especially don't post sign-off (unsubscribe) requests to the list.

  • Don't use lengthy signatures. Avoid repetitively posting a lengthy list of the sequence of events and dates in the progress of your adoption. Please limit your signature to * 5 * lines or less. Don't include business titles or similar information unless it is relevant to the list theme of adoption.

  • Stick to the list theme of Eastern European adoption! Avoid off-topic postings and especially don't republish Internet jokes, rumors, chain letters, or similar documents. Very likely everyone has already seen them a dozen times! Such postings will get you a warning.

  • Don't post virus alerts or similar messages. Most of these are hoaxes. In the unlikely event that there is a genuine computer virus threat that needs to be disseminated to list subscribers, one of the list administrators will post it.

  • Don't post attachments or encoded messages. Many people's software is not automatically set up to receive them.

  • Keep your content in good taste. Remember that what may be funny or interesting to one person may be extremely offensive to another.

  • Tolerate the viewpoints of others.

  • Try not to be offended by what others may post.

  • Don't post to the list asking if the list is working, or why you're not receiving messages from the list. Instead, send administrative requests to the administrators or to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

  • Avoid posting copyrighted material unless the copyright owner has given permission. (And remember that the list may not be redistributed in any form without prior permission from the administrator!)

  • If you do not follow these guidelines, we will contact you individually. We don't want to offend nor discourage you from posting messages. We do, however, want to make this list the best and most useful tool that it can be.


    As a subscriber of our list, we expect all to comply with these netiquette guidelines. In the unlikely event that you are contacted by a list administrator, please cooperate and comply with his/her directions. Any communication from one of the list administrators is considered private and may not be redistributed---even in paraphrased form.

    Failure to follow this guideline or a request from an administrator will result in immediate suspension of privileges. The administrators do not enjoy reducing someone's posting privileges (and have had to do it on extremely few occasions), but that option is necessary given the size and focus of this list.

  • FINALLY: ENJOY YOURSELF!! You will be making some close friends with whom you will laugh, cry, complain, worry, and hope. We welcome your input, your joys and sorrows, and your successes and setbacks. We hope that you find the list to be a place of information sharing, friendship making, and community building.


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If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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You can also obtain a copy of these guidelines via email by sending an otherwise blank message to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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