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Faculty On-Line Forum Advisory Board: An Initial Statement

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For information only. It is anticipated that the Faculty Senate will be formalizing this into legislation later this semester.

I. Faculty On-Line Forum Objective
The objective of the Faculty On-Line Forum is to be a vehicle for the identification, exploration and considered analysis of university-wide issues by the faculty, with appropriate input from other members of the Cornell community. Desired outcomes include:

*Broadening the range of information and ideas brought to bear on faculty and administrative decisions of university-wide impact;

*Facilitating the linkage between Faculty Senators and their department constituents; and

*Strengthening the sense of community among Cornell faculty.

II. Functions of the Faculty On-Line Forum Advisory Board
The Faculty On-Line Forum Advisory Board shall recommend and monitor procedures for operation of the On-Line Forum which:

*Stimulate faculty debate on issues before Faculty Senate or University administration and on issues which may or, in the opinion of one or more faculty members, should come before the Senate, the administration or the faculty at large; and

*Assure open expression of ideas and opinions while encouraging a commitment to fact, good taste and collegiality.

III. Faculty On-Line Forum Policy and Procedures
A. Access
1. The content of the Faculty On-line Forum will be available to all Cornell faculty, staff and current students.

2. Postings to the Faculty On-Line Forum will be accepted from all voting, nonvoting and ex officio members of the University faculty as well as members of the instructional and research staff identified in Article XVI of the University Bylaws.

Other members of the Cornell community (staff and students) may propose a posting to the Faculty On-Line Forum if they are sponsored by a Faculty Senator, the Dean of the Faculty or the On-Line Forum Advisory Board. The sponsor will be identified in the posting.

B. Content
1. Faculty On-Line Forum postings will be grouped under topical headings. The Dean of the Faculty or the On-Line Forum Advisory Board will determine topics to be initiated on the On-Line Forum and will determine when a topic and postings within it are moved to archive status.

2. Postings which address new topics will be placed under an "Other Issues" heading and will be moved to an appropriate new heading when at least three different individuals post related items.

3. The Dean of the Faculty or the On-Line Forum Advisory Board may invite postings either to initiate a new discussion topic or to provide balance to a proposed or on-going discussion.

4. The Dean of the Faculty or the On-Line Forum Advisory Board may post speeches of the President and other university officers, reports of Trustee, administration, Senate, or college committees, and other reports appropriate to the objective of the On-Line Forum.

5. The Faculty On-Line Forum will include a Resource Page containing links to additional relevant information.

6. Personal grievances for which there are existing University resolution procedures will not be posted (e.g., tenure decisions, academic misconduct, sexual harassment). Personal criticisms of individuals are discouraged and will be posted only if reasonably necessary to the development of an issue; civility and collegiality are expected in all postings.

C. Posting Procedure
1. Proposed postings will be transmitted to the Dean of the Faculty by email.

2. The Dean of the Faculty and his/her staff will determine whether or not a proposed posting is appropriate to the guidelines established by the On-Line Forum Advisory Board and may deny or edit proposals, or make posting contingent on recommended changes. The Dean may request advice or an interpretation of guidelines from the On-Line Forum Advisory Board regarding any proposed posting.

3. Individuals or groups denied access to Faculty On-Line Forum or who disagree with edits or recommended changes to a proposed posting may appeal the Dean's decision to the On-Line Forum Advisory Board. The chairperson of the Board will select two members on a rotating basis to function as a review subcommittee or may request that the entire Board review an appeal.

4. On receipt of a proposed posting, the Dean of the Faculty will verify the source of the posting via return email. Any editing suggestions or revision recommendations should be included in this message along with the following statement:

"You will be identified as the author of your posting to the Faculty On-Line Forum. Authors are legally responsible for the content of their posting. Copyright materials may not be used without permission.

"On-Line Forum is available via the Internet to Cornell faculty, staff and current students; because readers can easily copy or redirect online materials, wider distribution of your comments is possible. You may wish to review your posting with this in mind.

"Personal criticisms of individuals are discouraged and will be posted only if reasonably necessary to the development of an issue; we expect civility and collegiality in all postings. Personal grievances for which there are existing University resolution procedures will not be posted (e.g., tenure decisions, academic misconduct, sexual harassment)."

Faculty On-Line Forum Advisory Board
Melissa A. Hines, Assistant Professor, Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Donald F. Schwartz, Professor Emeritus, Communication - CHAIR
Peter Schwartz, Professor, Textiles and Apparel
Steven H. Shiffrin, Professor, Law
Paul F. Velleman, Associate Professor, Industrial and Labor Relations
J. Paul Yarbrough, Professor Emeritus, Communication


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