Journal of Ethics Discussion Forum User Agreement


AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (“AMA”) JOURNAL OF ETHICS DISCUSSION FORUM WEBSITE CLICK-THROUGH TERMS

Before using the Journal of Ethics Discussion Forum website (referred to as the “Website”), please read the following terms and conditions carefully. Choosing the "Accept" option on your screen below acknowledges your acceptance of these terms and conditions (the “User Agreement”), in addition to your compliance with the AMA’s Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Code of Conduct. If you do not accept the terms of this User Agreement, you will not be able to use the Website.

USE OF THE WEBSITE

The AMA seeks to enhance and promote collaboration among individuals through the Website. The Website is intended to help advance the AMA’s mission to improve the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health through dynamic, creative collaboration among authorized users of the Website.  

While some of the features and content on the Website are free of charge, we reserve the right to begin charging our users to access any or all features or content at any time, with reasonable advance notice and in our sole discretion.

You promise that you will use the Website in good faith, will use your real name and only submit accurate information.  You will not sign up under a false name or with someone else's name, even with that person’s consent. You will load onto your profile a profile photo that is a clear photo of your own face.

You will not create an account on the Website using a false, fake, "throwaway" or temporary email address (such as those generated on sites like fakemailgenerator.com and mailinator.com). You will only use a real email address that delivers email to you. If you create an account using a social media account (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus or LinkedIn) you must use a social account that is legitimately held by you and that contains accurate information about you.

You will not impersonate a physician or medical student on the Website. Physician accounts on the Website are intended only for people who have been conferred a degree of "Medical Doctor" or "Doctor of Osteopathy" by an accredited medical school or foreign equivalent. If you do not hold one of these two degrees you may not sign up for a physician account on the Website. Medical student accounts are intended for people who are currently attending a medical school that is accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) or the Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA). If you are not currently attending an LCME- or COCA-accredited medical school you may not sign up for a medical student account on the Website. AMA will do its best to preserve the information, but any information you submit to us is at your own risk of loss and you relinquish any rights to damages or compensation in the event we lose your information.  You represent and warrant that you are entitled to submit the information and that the information is accurate, not subject to confidentiality restrictions, and not in violation of any contractual restrictions or other third party rights.

Note that your compliance with this User Agreement will make the Website more useful to its member base as a whole.  The AMA does not have the obligation to monitor use of the Website in compliance with the terms of this User Agreement, but it reserves at its sole discretion the right to cancel or delete your account (along with all corresponding content) if you do not comply with these terms.  Nothing herein shall be construed as establishing or constituting a partnership, agency or joint venture between you and the AMA as a result of your participation in or subscription to the Website.

PRIVACY TERMS

Personal information you provide to the Website may include but is not limited to:

  1. Information that you enter into web forms on the Website, such as your profile information, status updates, job listings, etc.;
  2. Information that you upload to the Website, such as your profile photo, photos you post on your timeline and other files uploaded to the Website; and
  3. Information that you authorize us to access from other websites, such as your Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter profile information and contacts.

By default, the information you provide to the Website is visible only to you and other members of the Website, with the exception of the following:

  1. Information that you have specifically designated as "Public" will be visible to anyone on the Internet
  2. Your name, job title, current employer, "tagline," specialty and profile photo are visible to anyone over the Internet. What this means is that this information might show up in a Google search, for example. However, whoever clicks on the search result will not be able to see any additional information unless they are a member of the Website or you have designated that information as publicly visible.
  3. Any information that you post to the Website’s pages or group discussions that are designated as "Public". This information will be accessible to anyone on the Internet.
  4. If you list a job or research opportunity in the "Opportunities" section of the Website, the title, description, job location and other information will be visible to anyone on the Internet. Your contact details will not be visible (unless you include them in the description or other public field).

You will not post any information about a person's medical condition, medical history or any other information that would constitute a violation of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 and its implementing regulations, as amended ("HIPAA"). To the fullest extent permitted by law, you shall defend, indemnify and hold harmless AMA and its affiliates, subsidiaries, trustees, officers, employees, agents, representatives, suppliers, advertisers, promotional partners and licensors from and against any and all liabilities, damages (actual and consequential), suits, judgments, losses, claims, costs (including litigation costs), expenses (including attorneys' fees and costs) arising from or in any way related to your violation of HIPAA.

  We communicate with you through email, notices posted on the Website or apps, messages to your Website mailbox, and other means available through the Website. Examples of these communications include, but are not limited to: (1) welcome and engagement communications - informing you about how to best use the Website, new features, updates about other members you are connected to and their actions, etc.; (2) service communications - these will cover service availability, security, and other issues about the functioning of the Website; (3) promotional communications. These messages will be sent to you based on your profile information and messaging preferences.

Any information you include in your profile may be viewed by other members of the forum.  If you participate in the group discussions featured on the Website, share content on your network update stream, or import a blog or other content, you should be aware that any information you choose to disclose using these services can be read, collected, and used by other members in these forums, developers, and other third parties, including advertisers. We are not responsible for the information you choose to submit in these forums. Your contributions to groups are typically searchable on the Website and some content in such groups may be public and searchable on the Internet if the group owner has not closed the group for public discussions. You can identify closed groups by the padlock icon next to the group name. You can remove your posts to groups at any time. However, others may have copied and used the information that you shared.

AMA offers other websites the ability to embed buttons referencing the Website, for example that allow you to share or like on the Website from that authorized website.  When you use these buttons, you understand that you are submitting information to the AMA just as if you were submitting it directly to the Website.

AMA offers other websites the ability to identify you using your Website account. This will normally be labeled as "Login with Journal of Ethics Discussion Forum", "Login using your Journal of Ethics Discussion Forum account" or "Link your Journal of Ethics Discussion Forum account". In these cases, you will be asked for your Website username and password. If you enter this information correctly you will then be able to confirm what information the third party site is asking us to share with them. You have the option to either authorize or not authorize us to share the information. If you authorize us to share the information, we provide it to the requesting party and it then becomes subject to that party's privacy policy. We strongly recommend you read the privacy policy of third party sites before authorizing them to access your information on the Website.  AMA is not responsible for any use of your information by third parties with whom you have authorized us to share your information. 


When you contact our customer support services, we may have to access your Website mailbox, groups and other contributions to the Website and collect the information we need to categorize your question, respond to it, and, if applicable, investigate any breach of this User Agreement or the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy or Code of Conduct. We also use this information to track potential problems and trends and customize our support responses to better serve you. We do not use this information for advertising.

In order for us to improve your user experience and understand what features of the Website are most useful to our members, we collect information regarding how you use the Website.  This includes when and how often you log into the site, which links you click and how often, what information you look at on the Website and other usage metrics.  This information will only be shared with AMA employees, contractors and affiliates who have a reasonable need to know the information in order to improve your user experience and understand features of the Website that are most useful to you.

Whenever you use the Website, we automatically collect and store information in log files. These log files enable us to diagnose problems with the Website and keep it secure. We may also use this information to customize your experience on the Website (for example, by displaying relevant ads based on your location). Information that we collect can include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • The date and time you access the website
  • The IP address of your computer
  • Your operating system
  • Your web browser type and version
  • Which website you came from
  • What URLs you click on while on the Website
  • What URL you are directed to when you leave the Website
  • If you are viewing the Website on a mobile device, we record the mobile device type, operating system, mobile device identifier and browser type/version
  • If you have enabled location services, we may receive information about your physical location

The Website is operated by a third party, Medical Networking, Inc. (“Medstro”).  Medstro may have access to your information, including but not limited to, personal information you provide or upload to the Website, information that you authorize us to access from other websites, information we collect regarding how you use the Website, information you provide when you contact our customer support services and information we automatically collect and store as described in the paragraph above.  Additionally, we may employ other third party companies and individuals to facilitate the Website (e.g. maintenance, analysis, audit, marketing and development). These third parties have limited access to your information only to perform these tasks on our behalf and are obligated to AMA not to disclose or use it for other purposes.

We retain the personal information you provide while your account is in existence or as needed to provide you services. We may retain your personal information or content you post on the Website even after you have closed your account if retention is reasonably necessary to comply with our legal obligations, meet regulatory requirements, resolve disputes between members, prevent fraud and abuse, or enforce the terms of this User Agreement or the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy or Code of Conduct. We may retain personal information and any content you post on the Website, for a limited period of time, if requested by law enforcement. Our customer service may retain information for as long as is necessary to provide support-related reporting and trend analysis only, but we generally delete or de-personalize closed account data consistent with these terms.

You acknowledge that your use of the Website is voluntary.  You understand that the information you provide on the Website is visible to other members of the Website and could be used by them to infer other aspects of your life.  Additionally, other members of the Website can view any ideas, concepts, content, materials, notes, records, drawings, designs, logos, inventions, trade secrets, improvements, developments and discoveries you post to the Website.  Share what you feel comfortable with others viewing.  You can withdraw or modify your notification preferences, in accordance with the terms of this User Agreement, by changing your account settings under “Email Settings” in your profile.   The AMA does not endorse, promote or encourage (1) the organizations represented by the members of the Website or (2) the views or opinions of the members of the Website (or the organizations represented by those members). 

CHANGES TO AMA’S TERMS OF USE APPLICABLE TO THE WEBSITE

The AMA’s Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Code of Conduct shall apply to your use of the Website in addition to the terms of this User Agreement.  However, certain provisions of the Terms of Use are modified solely as they relate to the Website. 

Specifically, Section 18 (Warranties Disclaimed) of the Terms of Use shall be expanded to include User-Generated Content (defined in Section 9 of the Terms of Use), as follows:

“18. Warranties Disclaimed. THE WEBSITE, USER-GENERATED CONTENT AND AMA CONTENT ARE PROVIDED "AS IS" AND "AS AVAILABLE." NEITHER THE AMA, ITS AFFILIATES, SUBSIDIARIES, EMPLOYEES, OFFICERS, OR TRUSTEES NOR ANY OF ITS AGENTS, REPRESENTATIVES, SUPPLIERS, ADVERTISERS, PROMOTIONAL PARTNERS, OR LICENSORS (COLLECTIVELY "AMA PARTIES") PROVIDE ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED REPRESENTATION OR WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION, ANY REPRESENTATION OR WARRANTY THAT (i) THE WEBSITE OR AMA CONTENT, OR ANY RESULTS THAT MAY BE OBTAINED BY YOU, ARE COMPLETE, ACCURATE, RELIABLE OR NON-INFRINGING; (ii) ACCESS TO THE WEBSITE WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED, TIMELY, SECURE, OR ERROR FREE; (iii) THE QUALITY OF ANY PRODUCTS, SERVICES, INFORMATION OR OTHER MATERIAL PURCHASED OR OBTAINED BY YOU THROUGH THE WEBSITE WILL MEET YOUR EXPECTATIONS; OR (iv) AMA CONTENT WILL REMAIN UNCHANGED OR ACCESSIBLE ON THE WEBSITE. ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, ARE DISCLAIMED TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ANY WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, AND/OR NON-INFRINGEMENT OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY.”

Additionally, Section 19 (Limitation of Liability) of the Terms of Use shall also be expanded to include User-Generated Content (defined in Section 9 of the Terms of Use), as follows:

“19. Limitation of Liability. THE AMA PARTIES SHALL NOT BE LIABLE, AND DISCLAIM ANY LIABILITY, FOR ANY CLAIM, LOSS OR DAMAGE, DIRECT OR INDIRECT, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, COMPENSATORY, CONSEQUENTIAL, INCIDENTAL, INDIRECT, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES OF ANY KIND WHATSOEVER IN CONNECTION WITH, AS A RESULT OF, OR ARISING (i) OUT OF THE USE OF OR INABILITY TO USE THE USER GENERATED CONTENT, WEBSITE AND/OR ANY AMA CONTENT; (ii) FROM ANY INTERRUPTION IN THE AVAILABILITY OF THE WEBSITE AND/OR AMA CONTENT; (iii) FROM ANY LOSS OF DATA AND/OR FROM ANY EQUIPMENT FAILURE; (iv) OUT OF THE PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES RESULTING FROM ANY PROBLEMS WITH THE GOODS, CONTENT AND/OR SERVICES PURCHASED OR OBTAINED FROM THE WEBSITE, OR TRANSACTIONS ENTERED INTO, THROUGH OR FROM THE WEBSITE; (v) FROM UNAUTHORIZED ACCESS TO OR ALTERATION OF YOUR TRANSMISSIONS OR DATA; (vi) FROM STATEMENTS OR CONDUCT OF ANY THIRD PARTY ON THE WEBSITE; (vii) FROM ANY DELAY OR FAILURE OF THE WEBSITE ARISING OUT OF CAUSES BEYOND THE AMA'S CONTROL; (viii) OUT OF THE USE OF, REFERENCE TO, OR RELIANCE ON, THE AMA CONTENT; (ix) OUT OF ANY THIRD PARTY MATERIALS, INFORMATION, PRODUCTS AND SERVICES CONTAINED ON, OR ACCESSED THROUGH, THE WEBSITE (x) OUT OF ANY CONTENT, MATERIALS, ACCURACY OF INFORMATION, AND/OR QUALITY OF THE PRODUCTS, SERVICES OR MATERIALS PROVIDED BY OR ADVERTISED ON THIRD PARTY WEBSITES; OR (xi) OUT OF ANY OTHER MATTER RELATING TO THE WEBSITE OR AMA CONTENT.”

Lastly, Section 21 (Indemnification) of the Terms of Use shall also be expanded to include User-Generated Content (defined in Section 9 of the Terms of Use), as follows:

“21. Indemnification. To the fullest extent permitted by law, you shall defend, indemnify, and hold harmless the AMA Parties from and against all claims arising from or in any way related to User-Generated Content or your use of the Website and/or AMA Content, a violation by you of these Terms of Use, or any other actions connected with your use of the Website and/or AMA Content, including any liability or expense, losses, damages (actual and consequential), suits, judgments, litigation costs and attorneys' fees. The AMA will provide prompt written notice of any such claims, but failure to provide such notice will not release you from any of your obligations pursuant to this Section except to the extent that you are actually prejudiced by such failure, and will not relieve you from any other liability that you may have to the AMA Parties other than under this Section.”

The remaining provisions of the Terms of Use shall apply unmodified to your use of the Website. Capitalized terms used but not defined herein shall have the meaning ascribed thereto in the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy or Code of Conduct, as the case may be.

 

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By clicking “Accept” you are indicating that you have read and agree to the terms of this User Agreement.  By clicking “Decline” you are indicating that you do not agree to the terms of this User Agreement and, accordingly, you will not be able to use the Website.