Policy Committee Report
April 1997

Policies currently in place or in-progress are:

User Agreement..................................in place
Acceptable Use Policy...........................in progress
Mailing List Administration Policy..............exists not posted
Promotion of Commercial Services Policy.........draft exists
The committee's role really involves two seperate activities.

Examine or draft policies Ensure users activities are consistent with the various policies The User Agreement is the primary policy for CCN and all other policies derive from it. The UA is a legal contract between user and CCN. This is what governs our actions in cases where we receive complaints about any particular user.

The in-progress Acceptable Use Policy is intended as a guideline for users so that they have a consistent set of instructions on what we consider acceptable or appropriate use. It's designed to help users avoid running into problems, and to show how CCN interprets the various written and possibly unwritten rules of conduct for the different areas of the internet.

The in-progress Promotion of Commercial Serices Policy is something CCN has contemplated for a long time. We originally restricted all CCN web space to non-commercial information. There were a number of reasons for this but the situation may be changing . Now we feel that CCN may soon be able to allow limited commercial advertising on personal web pages. If you look at our vision, we want to promote local economic development and enable small business to benefit from the vast potential of the internet. Limited small business advertising, perhaps only for sole proprietors, is in the picture for the upcoming year.

Our other role as enforcer takes up most of our time on-line. Usenet News seems to generate the most complaints, although we also hear complaints of email harrasment, commercial homepages, foul language or innapropriate sexual comments on homepages, copyrite violation and of course we had one criminal investigation to deal with. On this last issue there was some confusion about our policy on privacy and this seems the perfect time to stress that CCN adheres to a strict code of conduct whereby all personal files are treated with utmost respect for our users' right to privacy.

The vast majority of complaints were satisfactorily addressed through a simple email from the Policy Committee. Some complaints remain unresolved because of our unwillingness to try to impose restrictions on our users' rights to express themselves. The majority of people we dealt with on policy issues were satisfied.

John van Gurp Chair - Policy Committee