This message contains guidelines on how to use this support group. Much of it is common sense and basic "netiquette" (commonly accepted internet etiquette), but even if you are an internet oldtimer, we ask that you read this message. The sooner we know that you understand the list guidelines, the sooner we can take you off moderation.
1. Please use a hashtag at the end of the subject line of all your posts (you do not need to use one in responses, it will be done automatically). Hashtags begin with a # and are created by the moderators. There is a list on the group's homepage.
2. Please trim your posts. i.e. only include the part of a message to which you are replying. Please don't leave the entire thread (topic) in place, just enough material for people to know what you are responding to. If you're not sure what we mean, watch how the moderators respond to posts. We ask that you do this because we have some blind menbers, and it's a lot easier for them if you trim. We won't take you off moderation until we know you do this!
3. The group is not a substitute for veterinary care. Nobody here is an expert (that includes the group owner), and any posts suggesting they are will be edited or deleted. Suggestions made by group members should always be discussed with a qualified vet, and should never be implemented without veterinary approval. No responsibility can be accepted.
4. Please do not mention vets, veterinary practices or vet schools by name. Please say "Dr A" or "my vet".
5. The default on this group is for all responses to go to the entire group. However, you can and should send certain responses, such as condolences, privately rather than to the list. One or two word responses should definitely go to the original poster!
6. Dealing with CKD can be stressful, and sometimes this is reflected in people's posts. Please try to be polite and supportive as much as possible. If you are upset by a message and wish to post a riposte, please take a little time to cool down and then decide whether you still wish to post. Sometimes things look different after a time-out. Flaming is not permitted.
7. Please be careful about copyright. It is usually safer to give a link to a website rather than to repeat the content verbatim in a list post.
8. Advertising, SPAMming and selling are not permitted. Suggesting sites or products which may be helpful to members is not considered SPAM, as long as you have no financial interest in the products or services concerned. Please do not solicit money, for your own or for another person's cat. You may not sell leftover supples here.
9. Messages are copyright to the original author, so please do not forward them to anybody else or use them elsewhere without the original author's permission.
10. Please only use a signature of a reasonable length.
11. Please try to keep your posts on-topic. It is absolutely fine to post about any aspect of your CKD cat's care, but if you, say, want to ask about your healthy cat's ear infection, please join our sister group, cats-healthandbehavior. You can join it by sending an e-mail to cats-healthandbehavior-subscribe@...
12. We don't allow attachments, including photos, on this list, in order to protect listmembers from the risk of viruses. We also do not allow the use of dropbox links because Helen and Anne A can't read them for some reason, so they cannot check if vet details are visible. We hope to make the group's files area available for uploads in due course, but in the meantime we ask that you type your cat's results into your message.
Please feel free to introduce yourself to the group. Tell us about your CKD cat and start getting some support. To start sending messages to members of the group, simply send an e-mail to email@example.com. Please include the hashtag #intro, your name and that of your cat in your subject line e.g. Helen and Tanya #intro. This way people won't get you confused with any other new members who have joined the same day as you, and it will help ensure you get responses.
If you have any questions about how the group is run, please write to us at the e-mail address below.
Helen, Group Owner
Anne V, Moderator
Anne A, Moderator