NACUANET Protocols

  1. NACUANET culture is kind and gentle

    NACUANET is a kind and gentle place. Remember that NACUANET readers are diverse with many experiences, perspectives, and sensitivities. Please make sure that discussion is pleasant and professional. Personal attacks or put-downs have no place on NACUANET. If you are going to post a non-legal message or a message intended to be humorous, please remember that each of us perceives humor differently and consider whether the content might offend other members of the list.

  2. NACUANET messages are for the discussion of hihger education law and related matters.

    NACUANET is a platform for members to discuss higher education legal issues and other matters that relate to the practice of higher education law. Examples of topics for discussion on NACUANET include caselaw, regulations, and legislation; specific campus situations; requests for sample practice aids and suggestions; and law office management.

  3. NACUANET messages should never be forwarded or shared with non-members

    NACUANET is exclusively for NACUA attorneys. NACUANET messages should never be forwarded to, printed for, or shared with someone who is not a NACUA attorney. Members who respond to NACUANET posts want to help their NACUA colleagues provide good legal services; they do not intend their posts to serve as advice to other members’ clients or colleagues.

  4. Be mindful of the antitrust laws and anticompetitive messages

    NACUANET may not be utilized in any manner that violates federal or state antitrust laws or other laws prohibiting anticompetitive practices. The antitrust laws generally prohibit any agreement or understanding inconsistent with the right and obligation of competitors (which includes NACUA’s member institutions) to exercise independent business judgment in pricing their products or services, dealing with their students and suppliers, and selecting the markets in which to compete, among other business practices. No express agreement or understanding is required; one can be inferred from statements or conduct. While most topics are appropriate for discussion, some messages especially those related to institutional financial practices could prompt such consequences. It is critical that NACUANET not be used to discuss competitively sensitive issues, including but not limited to the following:
      • Peer information sharing regarding matters such as salaries, tuition, housing and meal costs, refunds, staff compensation and employee benefits
      • Jointly establishing financial aid methodologies
      • Prospective budget-building information
      • Any topics that could lead to or constitute price-fixing, group boycotts / concerted refusals to deal, market allocation, bid-rigging, output limitations (such as admissions restrictions), application deadlines, or other competitively sensitive topics
  5. NACUANET messages are NOT confidential or anonymous

    You may never rely on your messages being confidential or private, even if addressed to only one person. Remember that:

    1. Forwarding – Although protocol 2 restricts forwarding, NACUANET messages, like any email message, can be forwarded to others or the content can be copied into a different e-mail message. 
    2. Subpoenas – NACUANET messages may be subpoenaed and, as a result, produced as discovery in litigation or investigations.
    3. Anonymity – Messages posted “anonymously” are not completely anonymous. (When deemed necessary by NACUA, such as in the case of an inappropriate post, NACUA may obtain the identity of the anonymous poster from the NACUANET service provider.)

    Never post anything that you wouldn’t want to share with an opposing party or other third party. Please double-check your message for content that might embarrass you or your institution or expose you or your institution to risk or liability.

  6. Messages should be brief, include a subject line and not duplicate  prior posts
    1. Brevity and Precision – Be brief and precise in your postings. Make sure your query clearly states the exact question you want answered.
    2. Subject Line – Limit your postings to one subject at a time and include a meaningful “subject line”. This makes responses more relevant and makes finding messages in search results much easier.
    3. Search the Archives and NACUA Resources First –  To minimize duplicate postings of the same question, please search the archives and NACUA resources before posting a message.
    4. Consider the Audience – Ask whether your message is of interest to the entire membership or whether it would be better directed to a more specific NACUANET community.  If you aren’t already a member of that group, you can join it.  You can view a list of NACUANET’s communities here. You may also want to identify a few NACUA members from the Member Directory (for example, if you have a state-specific question) who may be best situated to answer a question.
  7. Anonymous postings are not completely anonymous; use them sparingly
    1. Use Only When Necessary – Consider the good of the NACUANET community and the archival value of NACUANET before posting anonymously. Anonymous posts are appropriate only when either (a) the sensitivity of the subject matter or (b) the protection of your client precludes disclosing your identity. Otherwise, please include your name with your post.
    2. Not Truly Anonymous – As stated in Protocol 5, above, messages posted “anonymously” are not completely anonymous.
    3. Before Posting – Search the Archives and NACUA Resources First – See Protocol 4.c.
    4. Remove Direct References to Yourself or Your Institution – Remember that anonymous postings are now sent directly over NACUANET via a web form without review by NACUA staff. Whatever you type into the web form will be distributed to the entire listserv, so please be sure to remove any direct references to yourself or your institution.
    5. Anonymous Responses – If you need to respond to an existing NACUANET post anonymously, you can do so using the Anonymous web form.  However, make sure to include the same subject line as the existing post so that your response is appropriately linked to the existing message.
    6. Limit Frequency – Overuse of anonymous postings negatively impacts the entire NACUANET community. Anonymous posts should be used only in limited circumstances.
  8. Requests for Referrals can only be made with identifying information, and responses must be sent directly to the poster
    1. Reply to Poster -  Always send responses to a request for referral directly to the poster.  You can easily do this by clicking the “Reply to Sender” button. Do not post your response on NACUANET. 
    2. No Anonymous Requests for Referrals – Posters requesting a referral must sign their name and all responses must go directly to the poster rather than through NACUANET. Additional members wishing to see the responses may contact the original poster.
    3. Personal Referrals – NACUANET is for the benefit of member institutions. Please do not post requests for referrals for personal uses (e.g., divorce attorney), including for friends or non-member clients.
  9. You are welcome to use NACUANET to conduct surveys; it is NACUA’s preference that you gather answers privately and report results to the NACUA community.
    If you wish to use NACUANET to survey your colleagues on a particular question, please consider NACUA’s strong preference that posters either:
    1. use a third-party application to conduct the survey (e.g., Survey Monkey), or
    2. collect responses privately and summarize results for NACUA colleagues. Should you choose this option, please include the following sentence at the conclusion of the survey: “Please respond directly to me, and I will compile all answers and report back to NACUANET at the conclusion of the survey.”

    For the purposes of this protocol, a survey is a series of questions that are designed to elicit brief responses for each question, without additional substantive commentary.

  10. Non-legal messages should state “NONLEGAL” in the subject line

    If your message is one that addresses a non-legal/non-higher education topic, you should label it as such by putting the word “NONLEGAL” in the subject line. Before posting, please consider that NACUANET is used for exchange of information about higher education legal issues and members should post sparingly about NONLEGAL topics. Also, always keep in mind that messages can be forwarded and subpoenaed.

  11. Use NACUANET to respond to posts (except referrals)  

    Whenever possible, please respond to the listserv (rather than directly to the poster) so that the entire membership can benefit and learn from your response. Note, however, that responses to requests for referrals should always be sent directly to the requestor. See Protocol 6. 

  12. NACUANET is intended to help Member Institutions

    Remember that NACUANET is for the benefit of NACUA member institutions and should not be used as a research service for non-member institutions. Please don’t post a message that will call upon subscribers to share their time and expertise for your use on behalf of a non-NACUA client, unless a question raised about a non-member would be of significant interest to member institutions. Members with non-member clients should make sure that questions submitted to NACUANET will be of benefit generally to NACUA members or to their NACUA-member clients.

  13. Advertising or soliciting business on NACUANET is not permitted

    NACUANET should not be used for commercial or proprietary work. Advertising is not permitted.

    1. Referrals - Do not send responses to requests for referrals via NACUANET. You should send any response directly to the member who posted the request. See Protocol 8.
    2. Offering Services - If you post, or respond to a post over NACUANET offering your services or offering a colleague’s services, it is assumed that you (or your colleague) will not charge for this service.
    3. Conferences, Meetings, or Trainings - If you would like to post on NACUANET concerning an upcoming non-NACUA conference, meeting, or training at which you are speaking, please contact NACUA for approval before posting. Generally, NACUA posts information only for higher education legal conferences and programs offered by collaborating associations that meet certain criteria and are not in conflict with NACUA programs. At the sole discretion of NACUA, in some instances NACUA allows posting about other higher education legal programming if it is available to all NACUA members for free or for a nominal expense.
    4. Law firm resources/white papers – NACUA members from law firms often produce helpful resources related to issues of great concern to other members, and NACUA permits posting those materials (or links to them) when directly responsive to another member’s question on NACUANET. Please refrain from initiating a thread with such materials.
  14. Send position announcements to NACUA to post

    Position announcements should be sent to for posting by the NACUA staff. Please refrain from posting position announcements directly to NACUANET.  NACUA does not post or permit posting announcements for positions that do not meet the criteria for posting through the Career Center.

  15. Attachments can be efficient and are stored in the NACUANET Library

    The NACUANET platform permits you to post attachments, and you are encouraged to do so. Attachments sent via NACUANET are stored and saved in the NACUANET library. Please use caution, however, when sending attachments and do not attach another individual’s or entity’s proprietary materials unless you are authorized to do so.

  16. NACUA Staff responds to protocol questions  either directly or when raised by members

    NACUA staff regularly reviews NACUANET for compliance with the protocols and contacts members, whenever possible, concerning protocol issues. NACUA staff will also respond when a member raises a protocol issue.

  17. Protocols Applicable to All NACUANET Communities

    These protocols apply to all NACUANET Communities.