Urantia Book Readers Online Network

Membership Guidelines

Dear Members,

To meet the constant challenging needs of evolutionary growth we present to you a statement of values and meanings for UBRON and its members. As UBRON is evolving, so are these guidelines. The restatement is an update to the changes UBRON has undergone over the past few years. This statement clarifies what UBRON is and what guidelines will be used.

This statement reestablishes the mission and guidelines for UBRON to date (august 2013). The mission and guidelines are a work in progress, and the owner and manager continue to guide the route to UBRON's destiny. You will be kept informed of impending changes and your input is welcomed. UBRON's goals are:

1. Fostering the Golden Rule
2. Building global fraternity among all religions and
3. Helping others learn more about our Creator in and through The Urantia Book teachings.

The founder of UBRON, Susan Sarfaty, created a motto for UBRON:

"If it ain't love, it ain't real."

Please read the statement below and decide if UBRON's goals match yours. If so, please join with us. If not we wish you well as we part ways.

Thank you one and all for what you have done to keep the benign virus of love alive. May your good work be expanded every day through this unique web opportunity and its Forum. It has been created to be a haven for student-readers of The Urantia Book and sincere interested parties of all faiths.

Patrick McNelly - Network Manager

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Welcome to the Urantia Book Reader's Online Network (UBRON), a privately owned and operated website and discussion group. UBRON is the sole property of Bruce Schuman, UBRON's programmer.

UBRON is managed by Patrick McNelly and administratively assisted by Holly Carmichael, both of whom have volunteered to do this service work.

There are other long time member-volunteers who are consulted as necessary to help resolve administrative and membership issues that come up from time to time.

PURPOSE AND MEMBERSHIP

The main purposes of UBRON are to help Urantia Book readers from around the world create a dynamic network of reader/believers, share their insights and questions about spreading the teachings of the Fifth Epochal Revelation to the world, and be an example of how individuals and a group can live these teachings in our personal lives. Ultimately, UBRON has the potential to become the backbone software system for all Urantia Book related organizations to network and communicate with members, develop programs and projects, and meet the ever-growing needs of our international community. While these are just dreams today, this goal of unity is possible through UBRON.

And, of greatest importance, UBRON serves to help spread the "benign virus of love" with the goal of fostering the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man on Urantia.

DONATIONS

We accept voluntary contributions and donations to support future system upgrades, routine software maintenance, and other administrative and server costs. Increased financial support will enable us to add enhancements that will make UBRON even more interactive with and of service to the worldwide Urantia Book reader's community. Membership on UBRON is currently free, and all members are guests of the list owner. [Please contact Patrick McNelly privately (pmcnelly@gmail.com) to inquire further about making much needed and appreciated donations to this noble cause.]

UBRON is a "members only" network, meaning that only subscribed members can enjoy the perks and privileges offered by the website such as posting messages to a study group or a forum topic, having access to the archives, advertising your personal web site, posting pictures or obtaining any personal information attached to a member's resume.

This policy protects members from unwanted solicitations by those who would deflect the network from its intended purpose or disrupt the peace and fraternity of UBRON.

Dual memberships are not allowed on UBRON nor are anonymous names or obviously fraudulent registrations.

PROBLEM SOLVING

We are humans, and people encounter difficulties when trying to work together. The administrators encourage a Jesusonian approach to solving problems among members of UBRON. At the first sign of a problem, members should go privately with one another to alleviate friction and try to better understand one another.

By taking personal or chronic differences of opinion with another member off-list, other members will not be exposed to inappropriate, lengthy, and/or redundant personal arguments and bitterness. If the members in conflict cannot work out their differences in private, we strongly encourage them to ask other members to become involved privately as third party, objective, and mediators--using a resolution process that Jesus taught his followers.

Occasionally, you may find that you might be offended at someone's personal opinion, message, or attitude. In such a situation, UBRON suggests that you take the opportunity to write to that person privately in an honest attempt to find a peaceful solution about what they have written. When so doing, try to be loving, courteous, civil, and polite.

If, after you have honestly endeavored to find an acceptable and peaceable solution to your problem but have not been able to, you may post a simple private request to the list manger for an arbitrator or mediator to assist you further. There are members who are willing to volunteer in this regard, and who have professional experience in such matters.

It is not the responsibility of UBRON mangers, owners or administrators to problem-solve matters that may develop between members. We neither have the time or ability to do this.

In no case is it acceptable to have such private discussions on the public UBRON Forum. All public behavior and posts on UBRON are expected to follow the Golden Rule guidelines, which include courtesy, civility, respect, kindness, and consideration of the large number of members reading along. We cannot emphasize too strongly that UBRON members should be self-governing, based on adherence to the Golden Rule.

FORUM, STUDY GROUP, AND MEMBERSHIP MANAGEMENT

The UBRON Forum is set up on a topic and Focus Group basis, and there are several topics and Study Groups to choose from for discussion. The topics are wide ranging, and have evolved during the years that this network has been in existence. It is your choice which topics you want to subscribe to. You can only post to topics or study groups you are subscribed to. All new members must manage their own subscriptions to all topics and will not receive e-mail from the forum unless they chose to participate. Please manage your own e-mail accounts and familiarize yourself with how UBRON works to meet your needs. This information is available on the several Help menus on the UBRON main page. Leave your e-mail options set to NO if you do not want to get messages sent directly to your e-mail account. If you leave your e-mail settings set to NO, you must still be subscribed to a study group or to a topic to be able to participate. If you are going to be away from your computer for any length of time, please set your e-mail options to NO to avoid clogging up your In Box. Often we get bounced mail because in-boxes get full. If you change Internet Service Providers, please be courteous and change your UBRON e-mail address as well or your account will be set to Bad Address.

"Forum e-mail," allows distinct subject areas for UBRON e-mail Forum messages to be sent directly to those subscribed without you having to log into UBRON (www.ubron.org) to read mail and messages. We encourage the full and appropriate use of these tools, which are dedicated to providing each individual with an optimal environment on UBRON tailored to each individual members needs.

In particular, we urge that all contentious discussions -- particularly discussions related to external political issues and the internal political and/or legal issues confronting the Urantia movementbe kept to a minimum.

Also, we recommend that all discussions having to do with posts that include alleged messages or "transmissions" from "celestial beings" or the Teaching Mission take place in Forums dedicated to tese issues. While UBRON does not take an official position on these matters, there are other discussion groups outside of UBRON for members who want to participate more deeply in these subjects. If you do not feel this policy best serves your purposes and needs, then it is perhaps a better choice to pursue your goals with a group that will meet your goals and expectations.

Subjects such as "Urantia Organization Politics" and "The Teaching Mission" have repeatedly given rise to lengthy, passionate, and often heated confrontations in year's past. We would prefer to have such conversations private, off-line, or in discussion lists dedicated to such pursuits.

As an internationally based community, we welcome people from all faith traditions and backgrounds. Feel free to discuss how you came across the Urantia Book, and how its teachings have changed your life or just use it to network with other Urantia Book readers. The Urantia Book is spreading into many other countries, and we have many members across the globe.

UBRON also has a listing of links to UBRON members' websites and other web sites of interest, which are compiled by the members themselves. You are invited to post links in the Our Documents section by completing a form for that purpose as described on the Main Menu.

Each member may add any links to the list within the bounds of good taste and in conjunction with UBRON's umbrella principles. Access for adding or editing your listing is available in the Help Menus and UBRON User Guides.

Detailed information is found on the various HELP menus including an overview of UBRON functions which is available on the Main UBRON menu. It describes how to update your registration, how to post messages, and how to navigate around the network. There are also several other ways to communicate with other members using the UBRON Focus Group feature for subjects of personal interest not included in the topics. If you would like to start a new Focus Group, please contact Patrick or Holly. Focus Group Messages posted within Study Groups are only available to members of those Focus Groups and do not appear on the UBRON Forum.

You are encouraged to submit messages to the Forum from any e-mail account you currently use. You can easily change your e-mail address on your personal registration page if you change Internet Service Providers. Please do so. If you are going to be away from your computer for any extended period of time, please log into your registration page, and set your e-mail options to No if you are subscribed to Forum e-mail. Please do not acquire more than one membership account for yourself - it causes a number of problems and is therefore prohibited.

This is not a forum set up specifically for selling general goods and services such as AVON products or E-Bay Shops, although there is a topic called the "Business/Commercial" for members to link to their web sites, discuss their private business ventures, and to let other members know about their commercial interests. This is certainly encouraged.

UBRON'S NEW GUIDELINES

UBRON's new guidelines (below) will ensure that members know what is expected of them as a group and as individuals. This applies equally to the List Owner, List Manager and Administrators, as well as all members of UBRON.

UBRON will follow this set of guidelines in cases where posting and membership privileges are in question.

UBRON does not consider the following to be acceptable list behavior:

Discussions on the public Forum of the decisions of the owner, list manager or administrators

Discussion on the Forum of recently suspended members

Advertisements unrelated to the Urantia Book Community

Chain letters

"Auto-reply out-of the office messages." If we receive such messages, your dynamic e-mail option will be set to "No."

Messages posted to multiple topic discussion groups

Private messages from other members without their permission

Messages posted from other lists without the permission of the sender

Off-color jokes

Persistent swearing or cursing or generally offensive language

Threats against anyone

Name calling and insults

Obvious copyright violations

Messages that deal with illegal activities

Intentionally sending viruses or hoaxes

All personal attacks, including libel or slander

Managers, administrators, and the list owner reserve the right to determine if the content of a message is inappropriate for this forum of Urantia Book readers, and whether or not it falls within the parameters listed above. We reserve the right to determine appropriate action. In the internet medium this sometimes takes several days. Repeated or extreme violations may result in permanent "read only" status. The determination of the offense and the period of time for a suspension are solely at the discretion of the list owner or manager and shall not be the subject of debate or discussion on any of UBRON's Forum Topics or in any of its Focus Groups' public debate or discussion areas on UBRON.

The list owner and list manager, often in consultation with other valued members, reserve the right to suspend any part of or all membership privileges with no explanation, at any time, as they deem wise and appropriate for the sake and well being of the general membership of UBRON.

The owner and managers recognize that all "disciplinary" decisions necessarily involve subjective interpretations, and we make no claim to flawless judgment. We can only hope and pray that our decisions are guided by a group wisdom inspired by the Spirit of Truth. When our judgments fail that high standard -- as they sometimes inevitably will --we ask for your forgiveness when these honest errors occur as well as for the forgiveness of the Father of us all. If we have been in error, we will try to correct our errors in a timely manner for the good of the membership.

In order to keep this a friendly and spiritually fragrant list, we ask that the members please maintain civility in both their public and private communications. Challenging ideas is appropriate; attacking persons or the list managers and owners is not. Administrators reserve the right to use their judgment to identify what constitutes inappropriate behavior and to respond accordingly with public or private warnings. Ongoing discussions about other members detract from the spirit of our purpose and may be cause for posting or membership rights to be suspended. No messages sent to the Forum or Study Groups are pre-screened or censored by the UBRON management, so it is your responsibility to follow our guidelines and be self governing.

If you receive a warning about a post on UBRON, ypu are strongly encouraged to stop such behavior immediately and seek resolution to the conflict off-list. Repeat offenders could have their posting rights immediately suspended to minimize future breaches and distractions to the entire list.

Again for emphasis, all public discussions - positive or negative - about such warnings or member suspensions on any UBRON topic list are not allowed and will likely be a cause for the immediate suspension of posting privileges.

Please contact Pat McNelly directly at pmcnelly@gmail.com with list management questions. Joining UBRON constitutes an agreement with these policies. If the preceding guidelines are unacceptable to any member, please let me know and we will set your membership options accordingly.

Opinions expressed by members of UBRON are their own and not necessarily those of the list owner, assistants, the list manager or the superb teachings in The Urantia Book.