These are the terms which apply to your use of the Communities of Practice for Local Government website www.communities.idea.gov.uk (or its replacement or successor URL) and the services offered by us via that website (the "CoP Platform").
Please read these terms carefully before you start to use the CoP Platform. If you have any questions or issues please Contact Us.
By accessing the CoP Platform you are deemed to have accepted the Terms, whether or not you are a registered user of the CoP Platform. If you do not accept the Terms then you must not use the CoP Platform.
We may make changes to these terms at any time and such changes will take effect and be binding upon you from the point at which they are posted on the CoP Platform. Therefore, you should check these terms regularly to make sure you are abiding by the most current version. We may also make changes to the CoP Platform from time to time.
2. INFORMATION ABOUT US AND THE CoP PLATFORM
The CoP Platform is operated by Local Government Improvement and Development ("we" or "us"). We are a member of the Local Government Association (LGA) group, comprising of five partner organisations that work together to support, promote and improve local government. We are owned by the LGA and belong to local government.
We are registered in England and Wales under company number 3675577 and have our registered office at Local Government House, Smith Square, London SW1P 3HZ.
We have an agreement in place with the Improvement Service in Scotland (www.improvementservice.org.uk) so that users in Scotland can make use of the CoP Platform and set up communities on the CoP Platform. That agreement enables us to engage with the Improvement Service on implications or applications of these Terms which might impact on Scottish users.
The CoP Platform is a community platform which supports professional social networking, collaboration and the sharing of information and ideas across local government, the public sector and those working in public service improvement in the United Kingdom. We provide you with a rich collection of on-line facilities and services including but not limited to discussion forums, blogs, wikis, news feeds and a search facility (known as People Finder) allowing users who have registered to use the CoP Platform ("Registered Users") to search for and contact peers, advisers and other practitioners who are themselves Registered Users. The majority of content available via the CoP Platform is generated by our Registered Users and not by us.
3. ACCESS AND AVAILABILITY
We reserve the right to withdraw, suspend or amend access to all or any part of the CoP Platform or cease its operation temporarily or permanently at any time without notice.
Access to, and the use of, some parts of the CoP Platform (including content) may be restricted to Registered Users only (or to selected Registered Users) e.g. facilitators of communities on the CoP Platform control access to their communities and you will need their prior approval to join certain communities.
We may, at our sole discretion, refuse to register a user or to provide access to certain parts of the CoP Platform to certain users, or terminate the membership of a Registered User without providing reasons for doing so.
We will use reasonable endeavours to ensure that the CoP Platform is accessible 24 hours per day but the CoP Platform is provided on an "as is" and "as available" basis, and we give no warranties or guarantees that the CoP Platform will meet particular levels of availability or functionality. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not post any business critical information or material on the CoP Platform and that you keep copies of all information and content you post on the CoP Platform in accordance with your employer's policies and processes.
You are responsible for making all arrangements necessary for you to have access to the CoP Platform. We cannot guarantee that the transmission of any information over your internet connection will be secure nor can we guarantee that the CoP Platform will be compatible with any or all hardware and software that you may use to visit the CoP Platform.
Although you register to use the CoP Platform as an individual, effectively you are participating in your work capacity. Therefore, please make sure that you are aware of, and comply with, your employer's information and other policies regarding participating in inter-organisational collaboration platforms.
In order to use certain aspects of the CoP Platform you must complete the registration form available via the CoP Platform. You can access the registration form on the homepage of the CoP Platform or you can Register Here. All information you supply when registering for the CoP Platform will be available to other Registered Users except your user name, email address, telephone number and password.
You can edit your personal profile by signing in to the CoP Platform, selecting "My Profile", then selecting "Edit my Profile".
We allow access to the CoP Platform to Registered Users on the basis that:
- they provide accurate, current and complete information about themselves on any registration forms on the CoP Platform ("Registration Data");
- they maintain the security of their user name and password;they maintain and promptly update the Registration Data, and any other information they provide to us, to keep it accurate, current and complete;
- if they cease to work within the organisation which they indicated at the time of registration they worked for, they must Contact Us immediately so that we can update their registration and rights of access to the CoP Platform;
- they are responsible for all actions taken under their username and password;
- they do not create additional registered user accounts for the purpose of abusing the functionality of the CoP Platform, or other users; nor do they seek to pass themselves off as another person or user; and
- they comply with the Terms.
5. YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
6. YOUR PASSWORD
If you know or suspect that your password has been disclosed to another person you must immediately Contact Us to let us know and change your password. We have the right to disable your user name and password at any time if in our opinion you have failed to comply with any of the provisions of these Terms.
7. YOUR CONDUCT
You must only use the CoP Platform to post, use or send content and messages that comply with our instructions and which are legal (in respect of the law applicable in England and Wales, Scotland and in any country from which it is posted) and appropriate to the CoP Platform. In addition, you must comply with the standards in these terms. We will determine, in our sole discretion, whether a contribution to the CoP Platform or any other activity breaches the standards in these terms.
You must not do any of the following:
- defame, abuse, harass, stalk, intimidate, threaten or otherwise violate the legal rights (such as rights of privacy or intellectual property rights where applicable) of others;impersonate any other person or entity, whether actual or fictitious or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent yourself, your age or your affiliation with any person or entity or use or attempt to use another Registered User's account;
- upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make available any content that we deem to be obscene, indecent, unlawful, harmful, threatening, defamatory, infringing, abusive, inflammatory, harassing, vulgar, fraudulent, hateful, or racially, ethnically, sexually or otherwise objectionable;
- upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make available any material which contains a statement which you know or believe, or have reasonable grounds for believing, that members of the public to whom the statement is, or is to be, published are likely to understand as a direct or indirect encouragement or other inducement to the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism; or
- use the CoP Platform for commercial purposes; upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make available any unsolicited advertising (although you may advertise events you think may be of interest to other Registered Users),
- unauthorised advertising, solicitations, promotional materials, "junk mail", "spam", "chain letters", "pyramid schemes", or engage in any other form of solicitation;
- upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make available content unless you are sure there are no restrictions on your ability to do so;
- upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make available any material that contains software viruses or any other computer code, corrupted files, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment;
- delete any required author attributions, legal notices or proprietary designations or labels in, or falsify the origin or source of, any material that is uploaded;
- use automated scripts to collect information from or otherwise interact with the CoP Platform;
- register for more than one user account, register for a user account on behalf of an individual other than yourself, or register for a user account on behalf of any group or entity; or
- upload, post, transmit, share or otherwise make publicly available on the CoP Platform any private information of any other party, including, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and credit card numbers without first having obtain their consent to this.
8. VIRUSES, HACKING AND OTHER OFFENCES
You must not misuse the CoP Platform by knowingly introducing viruses, trojans, worms, logic bombs or other material which is malicious or technologically harmful. You must not attempt to gain unauthorised access to the CoP Platform, the server on which the CoP Platform is stored or any server, computer or database connected to the CoP Platform. You must not attack the CoP Platform via a denial-of-service attack or a distributed denial-of service attack.
By breaching this provision, you would commit a criminal offence under the Computer Misuse Act 1990. We will report any such breach to the relevant law enforcement authorities and we will co-operate with those authorities by disclosing your identity to them. In the event of such a breach, your right to use the CoP Platform will cease immediately.
The majority of the information, data, text, software, photographs, graphics, messages, tags, or any other material ("Content") on the CoP Platform is generated by our Registered Users. Content may be out of date and we make no commitment to update or remove the Content. We do not warrant the accuracy, completeness, integrity or quality of any Content on the CoP Platform.
Content is for information only and cannot be regarded as constituting advice or recommendations (professional or otherwise) and should not be relied on without taking independent advice. You are solely responsible for any decisions you take based on the Content.
When you use the CoP Platform you will be able to share Content with certain other Registered Users and will have access to Content provided by certain other Registered Users. You are solely responsible for the Content you post or make available on the CoP Platform. Any Content you display on the CoP Platform is done so entirely at your own risk. You may also be able to communicate with other Registered Users through the CoP Platform and you acknowledge that you are solely responsible for those communications. We are not and cannot be responsible for the behaviour of Registered Users.
We recommend that you do not include your home address, telephone number or other sensitive personal information in any messages you send via the CoP Platform and that you do not post any Content on the CoP Platform unless you are happy for it to be shared with other Registered Users and made public. Please make sure you have complied with your employer's information disclosure policies when posting Content on the CoP Platform.
Currently (as at April 2009) we are not legally required to comply with Freedom of Information ("FOI") legislation and would therefore not be required to consider requests for information which might or might not be held on the CoP Platform. However, Registered Users who contribute Content should be aware that if another user downloads their Content and stores it locally and if that other user's organisation is subject to FOI legislation, then this Content may potentially be considered for disclosure, and might actually be disclosed, in response to an FOI request.
Please bear in mind that we may from time to time disclose Content provided by Registered Users to the police or other enforcement or regulatory bodies in order to assist their investigations or where we are required to do so by law or regulatory obligation.
By using the CoP Platform you accept that you will be able to access Content posted by other Registered Users in an unedited and unrestricted form. We reserve the right, but have no obligation, to monitor the use of the CoP Platform. Facilitators of communities may also monitor your use of that community. We will not be responsible as author, editor or publisher of any contribution submitted.
We reserve the right to promptly without notice to you to reject, remove, or edit any Content on the CoP Platform without incurring liability to you. Facilitators of communities may also do this where the Content is posted in the community they manage.
If you encounter any content or behaviour in connection with use of the CoP Platform which you think is unacceptable you should report it to us by using the Feedback link on the CoP Platform. We will then review the content or behaviour and decide whether it complies with the Terms and we will deal with it at our discretion.
Where we consider it appropriate, we (or the facilitator of the applicable community) will endeavour to contact you to inform you that a complaint has been received in relation to Content which you have uploaded, the action that we have taken, our evaluation of the allegation, and what steps (if any) we require you to take.
You acknowledge that we reserve the right to charge Registered Users for setting up a community on the CoP Platform and may change our fees (if any) from time to time. If we terminate your registration because you have breached the Terms, you shall not be entitled to a refund of any unused portion of fees charged (if any).
12. POSTING CONTENT ON THE CoP PLATFORM
Any Content you make available via the CoP Platform will remain your Content (or that of the third party from whom you have obtained it from). We do not claim ownership of that Content.
The CoP Platform supports collaboration and the sharing of knowledge and information. As such, any Content you make available via the CoP Platform can be accessed and used by other Registered Users, or, where applicable, those Registered Users that have access to that part of the CoP Platform where the Content was posted, free of charge, in perpetuity and without any restrictions provided that those Registered Users comply with these Terms and acknowledge the source of the Content when using it. This is the default licence that applies to all Content you post on the CoP Platform.
If you would prefer to impose different rules on the use of your Content, then when you upload Content to the CoP Platform you can select a different type of licence to apply to use of that Content. We have provided you with a selection of licences from which you can select the licence which best reflects the type of use you are happy to allow. You will be provided with a link to descriptions of each of the licences before you upload your Content. If you do not select a particular licence type, the default licence will apply, so please do think carefully about how you would like others to use your Content.
Registered Users must comply with the relevant licence terms that apply to the Content they use.
By making Content available on the CoP Platform you grant us (and our agents, successors and assignees) an irrevocable, royalty-free licence (with the right to sub-licence) to use, distribute, reproduce, modify, adapt, and publicly display your Content on the CoP Platform (a) for the purposes of our providing the CoP Platform to users and promoting the specific community or other part of the CoP Platform to which such Content was made available; and (b) so that the Content can be made available and be used, viewed and downloaded by those Registered Users that have access to the specific community or other part of the CoP Platform to which such Content was made available. Our licence exists only for as long as the Content remains on the CoP Platform and will terminate at the time you or we (whichever happens first) permanently removes such Content from the CoP Platform.
All copyright, trade marks, design rights, database rights and other intellectual property rights in or relating to the Content on the CoP Platform (but not Content supplied by Registered Users)("Our Content") belong to us or our third party licensors. You may access, use and reproduce Our Content (excluding any software code) solely for the purposes of your use of the CoP Platform.
You may also print, copy or download Our Content provided always that:
- you acknowledge us as the source of Our Content;
- all titles credits and URLs are included; and
- you comply with any legal notice contained in Our Content.
The permission to use Our Content is revocable by us at any time.
13. LINKS FROM AND TO THE CoP PLATFORM
Where the CoP Platform contains links to websites provided by third parties, these links are provided for your information only. We have no control over the availability or content of such other websites, nor for any products or services available from them. Any such link should not be seen as an endorsement of such websites, or any products or services contained on them.
Please bear in mind that your use of such other websites may be subject to additional terms and conditions imposed by the owners of those websites. Your dealings with such third parties are between you and the third party, and we accept no liability as a result of you accessing such websites or entering into contractual arrangements with the operator in question.
You may link to our home page, provided you do so in a way that is fair and legal and does not damage our reputation or take advantage of it, but you must not establish a link in such a way as to suggest any form of association, approval or endorsement on our part where none exists.
You must not establish a link from any website that is not owned by you.
The CoP Platform must not be framed on any other site except with our permission. We reserve the right to withdraw linking permission without notice.
If you wish to make any use of material on the CoP Platform other than that set out above, please Contact Us.
We do not verify the identity of our Registered Users and you should not assume that the details of Registered Users are accurate. We are not liable for false or misleading statements by Registered Users.
We do not warrant that the CoP Platform is uninterrupted or error free or free of viruses, worms, Trojan Horses or technical defects of any description‚ and we accept no responsibility for any technical problems arising from your use of the CoP Platform.
Unless we specifically state otherwise, we provide the CoP Platform to you without any conditions, warranties, or guarantees, whether express or implied, including but not limited to any implied warranties or conditions as to the satisfactory quality or fitness for a particular purpose, which are expressly excluded to the extent permitted by law.
15. OUR LIABILITY TO YOU
Nothing within these Terms operates so as to exclude, limit or restrict our liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence, for fraud or for any other matter for which it would be illegal for us to attempt to limit or exclude our liability
Subject to the preceding paragraph, our maximum aggregate liability in contract, tort (including negligence) or otherwise arising out of or in connection your use of the CoP Platform shall be limited to £5,000,000 Sterling.
We will not be liable for:
- any indirect, consequential or special losses or damages or any loss of profits, data or income arising in contract, tort (including negligence) or otherwise arising out of or in connection with your use of the CoP Platform.
- any loss, damage, expense, costs, delays or other liability whatsoever (including without limitation any financial losses such as loss of profit) which you may incur as a result of any event beyond our reasonable control (including without limitation any failure of transmission, communication, computer or other facilities or your inability to access the CoP Platform for any reason or any failure, error or delay in the sending or receiving of any notice or communication or instruction through the post or any electronic medium or any virus infection or denial of service attack).
In the event that you have any right, claim or action against any other Registered User from that Registered User's use of the CoP Platform, you agree to pursue such right, claim or action independently of and without recourse to us, and you release us from all claims, loss, damage expense, costs, delays and other liability, known and unknown, arising from or in any way connected with such right, claim or action.
16. YOUR LIABILITY TO US
You agree to indemnify us and keep us indemnified against any and all claims, damages, losses, liabilities and reasonable costs arising from or in connection with your use of and conduct on the CoP Platform and/or your breach of any of the Terms.
If you no longer wish to be a Registered User, please Contact Us or terminate your registration by selecting Remove my Registration in you My profile page.
If we reasonably believe that you have not complied with the Terms we may, at our discretion and without incurring liability, cancel your membership and restrict access to the CoP Platform immediately and without giving you any advance notice.
Even after termination (for whatever reason) these Terms shall remain in full force and effect.
Any failure or delay by us to enforce strict performance by you of any of the Terms or to exercise any right under the Terms will not be regarded as a waiver of any rights.
if any provision of the Terms is found by any Court, or other competent body to be wholly or partly illegal, invalid, void, voidable, unenforceable or unreasonable, that part shall be deemed to be severable from the Terms and the remaining provisions of the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.
The Terms are not intended, nor shall it operate, to create a partnership or joint venture of any kind between us and you, and you are not authorised to act as our agent.
21. THIRD PARTY RIGHTS
Nothing in the Terms shall create or confer any rights or any other benefits whether pursuant to the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 or otherwise in favour of any person other than you or us.
We may provide you with notices regarding the CoP Platform or the Terms by regular mail, email, or postings to this website.
23. ENTIRE AGREEMENT
These Terms constitute the entire agreement between you and us with respect to the use of the CoP Platform and supersedes any previous agreements between you and us regarding such subject matter.
We may assign, delegate or transfer our rights, liabilities and/or obligations under the Terms without your prior consent and upon such assignment, delegation or transfer we shall be relieved of any further obligations under the Terms. You shall not assign, delegate or transfer any of your rights, liabilities and/or obligations under the Terms without our prior written consent.
25. GOVERNING LAW AND JURISDICTION
The interpretation, construction, effect and enforceability of these Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with English Law. You and we agree to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.
26. CONTACTING US
You can contact us by sending an e-mail message to: firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to us at Local Government Improvement and Development, Layden House, 76-86 Turnmill Street. London, EC1M 5LG
Last updated 20 July 2009
We are committed to protecting your privacy online.
If you do not want us to collect, use and/or transfer your personal information in this way then you should (depending on what it is you object to) Contact Us and ask for your information to be deleted.
For the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1988 (the "Act"), the data controller is The Local Government Improvement and Development of Local Government House, Smith Square, London SW1P 3HZ ("we" or "us").
2. WHAT WE MEAN BY PERSONAL INFORMATION
3. PERSONAL INFORMATION THAT WE COLLECT
You can look at the CoP Platform without giving any personal information about yourself. However, if you register on the CoP Platform as a user, we ask you for certain basic and personal information in order to build up your user profile, for example your name and email address.
We may collect and process the following data:
- information you provide via the "Registration" page when registering to use the CoP Platform including your name, email address, job title and any updated information you provide from time to time;
- any comments you may have about your application to register to use the CoP Platform;
- Information you provide via the "My Profile" page;
- Information you provide when you submit or post content to the CoP Platform or when you contact us (including when you report a problem with the CoP Platform to us).
- additional information we may request from you from time to time either by contacting you directly or through the CoP Platform, although there will be no obligation on you to provide this additional information.
- Details of your visits to the CoP Platform including, but not limited to, traffic data, location data, weblogs and other communication data, whether this is required for our own purposes or otherwise and the resources that you access.
We may collect information from your computer and browser including your IP address and cookies information. Please see Section 9 below for more information.
We will let you know on the registration page if the provision of certain information is optional.
If you provide us with information about another person you confirm that they have appointed you to act for them, consent to the processing of their personal data including sensitive personal data and that you have informed them of our identity and the purposes (as set out below) for which their personal data will be processed.
By providing us with your personal information, you consent to our processing your personal data for the purposes set out below.
4. How we use your personal information
We use personal information held about you in the following main ways:
- so that we can administer and support the CoP Platform and your use of the CoP Platform;
- to provide you with access to the appropriate areas and functions of the CoP Platform (including to particular content);
- to contact you by email from time to time, in order to ask for your views on the CoP Platform and/or any of the content on the CoP Platform;
- to notify you occasionally about important changes or developments to the CoP Platform;
- for Subscribers to access and search the People Finder facility available via the CoP Platform and connect with other registered users of the CoP Platform;
- for assessment and analysis to enable us to review, develop and improve the services we offer; and/or
- for other purposes to which you have given your consent
We may also use information provided by you (such as what you think about the CoP Platform and improvements that you would like to see made) or statistical information collected, so that we can improve the CoP Platform or make your visits to the CoP Platform more rewarding.
We do not sell, trade or rent your information to other parties unless we have first obtained your consent. If you do give us permission, we will only share information with organisations we have carefully selected and believe to be reputable. We may provide statistics about our customer sales, traffic patterns and related site information to third parties, but we will not supply any personal information that would enable you to be identified.
Except in very specific circumstances, we do not disclose any of your information to other parties, except where you have given your consent in the "My Profile" section of the CoP Platform. In this respect we may need to share your information with our service providers and agents for the above purposes. We may also disclose your information to other members of the Local Government Association (LGA) group; any of our subsidiary or holding companies; any successor body to us; and/or to the Improvement Service.
Otherwise, we reserve the right to give your personal information to a third party without your consent where:
- the disclosure is required by law, such as where there is a court order, or statutory obligation requiring us to make such a disclosure; and/or
- we believe that such disclosure is necessary in order to assist in the prevention or detection of any criminal action (including fraud) or is otherwise in the overriding public interest, and is permitted by law.
By registering as a user of the CoP Platform, you acknowledge and agree that some of the information you provide may be accessed from countries outside the UK. Please note that countries outside Europe may have lower standards of data protection than in the UK.
5. HOW WE PROTECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
However, while we strive to protect your personal information, due to the nature of the internet we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us. With this in mind, we urge you to take every precaution to protect your personal information while you are on the internet.
6. HOW LONG WE KEEP YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
We will keep and use the personal information for as long as you are registered as a user of the CoP Platform, and for at least 3 years afterwards, in order to deal with any consequent queries or complaints you may have.
If you are a registered user and cease to access the CoP Platform for over 2 years then we shall mark your personal profile as "gone away" and inactivate your registration. If you wish to use the CoP Platform after such period has elapsed then you may need to re-register with us.
If you cease to access the CoP Platform for over 3 years then your personal profile will be expunged from our systems, unless there is a specific legal reason or requirement to keep the information for longer, for example if it is relevant to any current or potential legal proceedings.
Any references to you in any current records and any statistical or anonymised information (from which you cannot be identified) may be kept for longer periods.
7. UPDATING YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
If you are a registered user, you can access all the information we hold about you and you can amend or update any inaccuracies in your personal information by logging on to your personal profile. If you have any other queries regarding the information we hold about you then you should contact us at the contact addresses set out in Section 10.
9. IP ADDRESSES AND COOKIES
We may collect information about your computer, including where available your IP address (which is a unique identifier of the user's computer or other access device), operating system and browser type, for system administration and to report aggregate information. This is statistical data about our users' browsing actions and patterns, and does not identify any individual.
For the same reason, we may obtain information about your general internet usage by using a cookie file which is stored on the hard drive of your computer. Cookies are small files stored in your computer's hard drive by your web browser. When you access the CoP Platform, our computer server will access these cookies so that it can recognise your computer. They help us to improve the CoP Platform and deliver a better and more personalised service. They enable us:
- to estimate our audience size and usage pattern;
- to store information about your preferences, and so allow us to customise the CoP Platform according to your individual interests;
- to speed up your searches; and
- to recognise you when you return to the CoP Platform.
Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can alter your settings to allow you to be prompted every time a cookie is sent to you or you can choose not to receive cookies at all. However, please note that if you have 'disabled' cookies in your browser this way you may not be able to use certain features on CoP Platform.
For independent information about cookies you can go to www.allaboutcookies.org
10. CONTACT US
If you have any queries about how we use your information you can contact us by sending an email message to: email@example.com or by writing to us at Online Communications Team, Local Government Improvement and Development, Local Government House, Smith Square, London, SW1P 3HZ.
Last updated 20 July 2009