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Freelance-Seattle.net is a professional discussion list with a large audience of Seattle area freelancers. Its purpose is for its members to discuss work, and for potential clients to find freelancers.

If you understand that, and you have some experience with e-mail discussion lists, you probably already know most of these guidelines.

Guidelines for Members

These guidelines are here because they describe mistakes that have been made more than once. There's no reward for doing the DO's, but one serious DON'T can get someone removed from the list.

DO

  • Do reply carefully. Replies are addressed to the list by default, which is fine if you deem your response will be helpful to the group. Think of it as a large group conversation. For projects, you must manually address your reply to the client.
  • Do respond privately, if your response is personal, private, potentially embarrassing, inappropriate for broadcast, etc. Copy and paste the posting individual's e-mail address in your reply.
  • Do respond only to the client contact person listed in project opportunity posts. Include your qualifications and links to samples of your work, as appropriate. Check out the FAQ on getting projects.
  • Do post messages on topics that pertain to freelancers. Remember that ONLY freelancers subscribe to the list. We like to talk to other freelancers about business practices, good/bad clients, insurance, collections, contract terms, taxes, staying motivated, balancing work with life, etc. Keep it as brief as you can, we're all busy (we hope).
  • Do think of ways to promote our list to prospective clients, to encourage them to post their project opportunities on the list. Feel free to post projects on behalf of willing clients. We all encounter clients who ask, "do you know anyone who..." and Freelance-Seattle.net is the place to find them. Have them send their specific project description to
  • Do post requests for help from other freelancers on projects you now have or are pitching. "Writer needs to team with designer for hospital brochure," etc.
  • Do send all messages from your subscribed e-mail address. If you use an alternate e-mail, your posts will bounce.
  • Do omit the previous thread when you reply, or limit what you include. A sentence or two is usually enough. Make your posts 90% to 100% original text.
  • Do use a descriptive subject line in new posts. We have no rules about subject lines, just that you please write them to make sense.
  • Do change the subject line when the topic has changed.
  • Do report abuse, spam, etc., immediately, to Forward the offending message(s). Verified offenders are banned from the list without warning.
  • Do read the small handful of web pages pertaining to this list at Freelance-Seattle.net (you are here). Check out the FAQ on discussions and the FAQ on getting projects.
  • Do remember that this is a volunteer-run list, with mailing list service and web space costs donated by freelancers who want to support the freelance community. Member messages are unmoderated. The demands of the list are often prioritized after paying work.

DON'T:

  • Don't post promotions for any product or service. No spam, no recruiting for salaried positions, no general "freelancers wanted" messages.
  • Don't try to promote yourself on the list. This is a freelancers' list ONLY. No one on the list is going to hire you, so please refrain from self-aggrandizing content, lengthy signatures, etc. We're all our own sales reps, and we sometimes don't know when to stop selling ourselves. Save it for prospective clients.
  • Don't post adult content, virus alerts, chain letters, appeals for donations to special causes, jokes (unless they're about the freelancing worklife), etc.
  • Don't post political topics, religious topics, etc. There's no sense side-tracking a professional list with off-topic discussions. Other lists and newsgroups exist for these topics.
  • Don't copy the entire thread (or especially not the whole digest) when you reply to the list. Besides sending unnecessary bytes, your message could exceed the maximum size and bounce.
  • Don't attach anything to your message to the list, it will bounce.
  • Don't send HTML messages to the list, some people cannot display them. Instead, use plain text messages and embed a link to a site that is of interest to the group, including the http:// part of the URL.
  • Don't use mailing list administrative keywords, or your message will bounce to the administrator. (Hyphenating these words, e.g., sub-scribe or unsub-scribe, will get them past the admin filter.)
  • Don't insult or flame any other member on the list. Do this privately, if you must do it at all, and take full responsibility for your words.
  • Don't aggressively pursue a prospective client through repeated contacts. They post their projects and include their contact information in good faith that we will treat that information respectfully. This is a small town, and word spreads quickly. We want companies to keep posting their projects! Similarly, don't harass fellow members in off-list messages.
  • Don't violate the law, including copyright, on the list. Rather than posting text from the web, post a link to it. Price discussions, particularly those that make it appear that two businesses are agreeing on what price to charge, can easily fall into a legal gray area of price-fixing, so please avoid discussing specific dollar rates in that way--do this privately, if you wish.
  • Don't send mail from your alternate e-mail if you subscribed from your primary e-mail (or vice versa) because if your message does not come from exactly the same address as your subscription, it will bounce.
  • Don't do anything here that you wouldn't want to have to explain to your Mom or your children.
  • Anyone who posts to Freelance-Seattle.net takes full responsibility for the content of their message. Neither Freelance-Seattle.net, the list administrators, nor the volunteer list maintainer, assume any responsibility for the actions of list members or the legality or social appropriateness thereof. Abusive behavior may be determined solely by the list's administrators.

 

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