This outlines Mo’BettaLife.com’s policies related to use of the web site and its contents, web site memberships, use of member forums, page, post, and podcast comments, emails, and any other interactions between visitors, members, and site owners Jeffrey Phillips and Martin Schoen.
Please read it to understand how we conduct ourselves and how we expect you to conduct yourself when using Mo’BettaLife.com and it’s products and services. We will cover how you can expect us to respond to various interactions that may occur between us, as well as how we expect you to interact with other visitors and members.
If you have any questions about anything within this policy, we encourage you to contact us at Support@MoBettaLife.com. As new technology develops and the Internet changes, there may be times when we need to update this policy. If we do so, we will notify you of any policy changes and make sure you are aware of the updated policy.
Terms and Conditions of Use, Privacy & Confidentiality, & Rules of Conduct
This is a psychology-related and/or personal development web site, membership web site, blog, and/or podcast where people are invited to OPT-IN to more fully enjoy the benefits of the web site, membership web site, blog, and/or podcast. Casual visitors to the web site may just enjoy reading, watching, or listening to the content that is freely available without joining and becoming a member of the web site community.
The contents of the Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) Web Site, such as text, graphics, images, video, pdf documents, online educational course material, and member forum content, comments by Mo’BettaLife.com owners, and other material contained on the Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) Web Site (“Content”) are for informational purposes only. The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical and/or mental health advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health or mental health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical or mental health condition. Never disregard professional medical or mental health advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on the Mo’BettLife.com (mobettalife.com) Site!
If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Web Site. Reliance on any information provided by Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com), Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettlife.com) owners, employees, or staff, or others appearing on the Web Site at the invitation of Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com), or other visitors to the Web Site is solely at your own risk. By visiting and/or participating in and on Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) as a visitor or member, you agree to release Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) owners, employees, and staff, and others appearing on the Web Site from ALL LIABILITY for any problems or concerns you may have that may directly or indirectly impact your health and well being.
YOU AGREE that, if you are taking any medication prescribed by a physician, nothing in or on Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) warrants any changes to your prescription and you understand that ANY CHANGES to your prescription medications are solely YOUR DECISION and RESPONSIBILITY and MUST BE first discussed and approved by your physician. YOU AGREE that Mo’BettaLife.com (mobettalife.com) does not have ANY LIABILITY for any adverse impact of your decisions to start prescription medications or change or end use of prescription medications.
Next, if you participate in the COMMENT sections or if you join as a member and you post comments or questions in our FORUMS, or you participate in written form or via spoken word in any way in or on our web site, blog, podcast, webinar, or chat rooms:
- You are responsible for complying with the age limit rule which is: You can only register for a membership on and participate in Mo’BettaLife.com as adult over the age of 18.
- You are responsible for how you choose to identify yourself, either by your actual legal name, your nickname, or with a pseudonym (fake name). You can use any of them. However, you must use a real email address.
- You are responsible for how you choose to interact with us or with other members. You are expected to be kind, courteous, and respectful at all times. We reserve the right to delete comments and/or memberships if we feel this expectation is NOT followed. We may or may not choose to give a person a warning first—that will be decided on a case to case basis. Profanity or swearing is tolerated with limits: if it is used to harass or abuse others, the person doing so will be sanctioned. If it is used to enhance personal expression, we will generally tolerate it. We’re all adults here. That said, we reserve the right to make the ultimate decision about the appropriateness of any communication on Mo’BettaLife.com.
We do whatever we can to protect your privacy. We NEVER share, rent, or sell your name, email address, or any other private information with anyone outside of Mo’BettaLife.com, LLC. Period. If you provide any information needed to donate money or make a purchase, that information will be used ONLY for that purpose.
If you comment on a page, post, podcast, webinar, chat room, or in the member forums, YOU are responsible for the information you choose to share including your legal name, nickname, or pseudonym (fake name, alias), email address, or any other personal information. We are not liable for any disclosure you make in any of the areas of the web site or in audio broadcasts, whether intentional or accidental.
If you ARE NOT a current or former client or patient of Jeffrey Phillips or Dr. Martin J. Schoen, Psy.D., L.P, you DO NOT have to read any further. What follows is ONLY for their current or former clients and patients. Thank you.
* * * * *
IF YOU ARE A CLIENT or PATIENT or FORMER CLIENT or PATIENT
of Jeffrey Phillips or Dr. Martin J. Schoen, Psy.D., L.P.,
PLEASE READ WHAT FOLLOWS IN ITS ENTIRETY!
First, make sure you read all of the sections above including the section on use of prescription medications!
Jeffrey Phillips and Dr. Martin J. Schoen, Psy.D., L.P. have been working professionals in the mental health field for over 30 years. If you are one of our clients or patients or a former client or patient, we DO NOT recommend that you comment on our pages or posts, podcast, or chat rooms, webinars, or send us emails and/or respond to our emails, join Mo’BettaLife.com’s membership web site, and/or participate in our member forums because of the risk that your confidentiality will be breached; in other words, you run the risk that the fact you are or were one of our clients or patients might be disclosed to the public and, therefore, your personal health information might be disclosed. Of course, you are free to send us emails and/or respond to our emails, comment on pages or posts podcast, webinars, or chat rooms, or join any web site you choose, and/or participate in our member forums and disclose any information you choose; however, if you do so, you agree to release Jeffrey Phillips and Dr. Martin J. Schoen, Psy.D., L.P. of ALL LIABILITY for any such disclosures you make in or on Mo’BettaLife.com, whether accidental or intentional. IF you DO comment on pages or posts, a podcast, chat rooms, in webinars, send us emails and/or respond to our emails, register for a membership, and/or participate in our member forums, we recommend that you use a pseudonym (fake name, alias) to disguise your identity AND/OR avoid disclosing that you are or were one of our clients or patients. Regardless of your choice, we WILL NOT interact with you publicly in or on any part of Mo’BettaLife.com’s web site and we WILL NOT DISCLOSE that we know you or that you are or were one of our clients or patients. We may choose to disallow you to join and/or cancel your membership if we deem it is detrimental to your mental health, our professional relationship, or your treatment plan.
Social Media Policy: Friending & Following
WE DO NOT accept friend or contact requests from current or former clients or patients on any social networking site (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc). We believe that adding clients or patients as friends or contacts on these sites can compromise your confidentiality and our respective privacy. It may also blur the boundaries of our professional and/or therapeutic relationship. If you have questions about this, please contact us privately and we can talk more about it.
You are welcome to view any social media web site or account of ours and read or share articles posted there, but we do not accept current or former clients or patients as Fans or Friends of our social media accounts. We believe having clients or patients as social media Fans or Friends creates a greater likelihood of compromised client confidentiality and we feel it is best to be explicit to all who may view our list of Fans or Friends or Followers to know that they will not find client or patient names on that list. In addition, the American Psychological Association’s Ethics Code prohibits Dr. Martin J. Schoen, Psy.D., L.P. from soliciting testimonials from current or former clients or patients. Dr. Schoen feels that the terms “Fan” or “Friend” comes too close to an implied request for a public endorsement of his private practice.
Our primary concern is privacy of current or former clients and patients. If you share this concern, there are more private ways to follow us on social media platforms such as Twitter (such as using an RSS feed or a locked Twitter list), which would eliminate your having a public link to our content. You are welcome to use your own discretion in choosing whether to follow us.
If you’re a current or former client or patient, note that we will not follow you back. If we do so at all, we would only follow other health professionals on Twitter and we do not follow current or former clients or patients on blogs or Twitter. Our reasoning is that we believe casual viewing of clients’ or patients’ online content outside of the psychotherapy hour can create confusion in regard to whether it’s being done as a part of your treatment or to satisfy our personal curiosity. In addition, viewing your online activities without your consent and without our explicit arrangement towards a specific purpose could potentially have a negative influence on our working relationship. If you are a current client or patient and there are things from your online life that you wish to share with us, please bring them into our sessions where we can view and explore them together during the psychotherapy hour.
If you are a current or former client or patient of Jeffrey Phillips or Dr. Martin J .Schoen, Psy.D., L.P., lease do not use SMS (mobile phone text messaging) or messaging on Social Networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn to contact us. These sites are not secure and we may not read these messages in a timely fashion.
Do not use Wall postings, @replies, or other means of engaging with us in public online if we have an already established client/psychotherapist and/or professional relationship. Engaging with us this way could compromise your confidentiality. It may also create the possibility that these exchanges become a part of your legal medical record and will need to be documented and archived in your chart.
If you need to contact us between sessions, the best way to do so is by phone.
Use of Search Engines
It is NOT a regular part of our practices to search for clients on Google or Facebook or other search engines. Extremely rare exceptions may be made during times of crisis. If we have a reason to suspect that you are in danger and you have not been in touch with one of us via our usual means (coming to appointments, phone, or email) there might be an instance in which using a search engine (to find you, find someone close to you, or to check on your recent status updates) becomes necessary as part of ensuring your welfare. These are unusual situations and if we ever resort to such means, we will fully document it and discuss it with you when we next meet.
Business Review Sites
You may find my our private practices on sites such as Yelp, Healthgrades, Yahoo Local, Bing, or other places which list businesses. Some of these sites include forums in which users rate their providers and add reviews. Many of these sites comb search engines for business listings and automatically add listings regardless of whether the business has added itself to the site. If you should find one of our listings on any of these sites, please know that our listings are NOT a request for a testimonial, rating, or endorsement from you as one of our clients or patients.
The American Psychological Association’s Ethics Code states under Principle 5.05 that it is unethical for psychologists, such as Dr. Schoen, to solicit testimonials: “Psychologists do not solicit testimonials from current psychotherapy clients/patients or other persons who because of their particular circumstances are vulnerable to undue influence.”
Of course, you have a right to express yourself on any site you wish. But due to confidentiality, we cannot respond to any review on any of these sites whether it is positive or negative. We urge you to take your own privacy as seriously as we take our commitment of confidentiality to you. You should also be aware that if you are using these sites to communicate indirectly with us about your feelings about our work, there is a good possibility that we may never see it.
If we are working together, we both hope that you will bring your feelings and reactions to our work directly into the psychotherapy, counseling, or consulting process. This can be an important part of professional services, even if you decide we are not a good fit. None of this is meant to keep you from sharing that you are receiving professional services from one of us wherever and with whomever you like. Confidentiality means that I cannot tell people that you are one our clients or patients and Dr. Schoen’s Ethics Code prohibits him from requesting testimonials. But you are more than welcome to tell anyone you wish that we are your psychologist, psychotherapist, counselor, or consultant, or how you feel about the treatment or services we provided to you, in any forum of your choosing.
If you do choose to write something on a business review site, we hope you will keep in mind that you may be sharing personally revealing information in a public forum. We urge you to create a pseudonym that is not linked to your regular email address or friend networks for your own privacy and protection.
Thank you for taking the time to review our policies regarding Social Media, Texting, Interacting, and the Internet. If you have questions or concerns about any of these policies and procedures or regarding our potential interactions on Social Media, Texting, Interacting, and the Internet, do bring them to our attention so that we can discuss them.
*Please see our separate policy below regarding EMAIL*
Privacy Policies and Practices Regarding:
EMAIL Communication with current or former Clients or Patients
As of this writing, Mo’BettaLife.com’s and our professional private practice email accounts email accounts are NOT HIPAA compliant. In other words, they are not encrypted end-to-end and secured by a professional business contract with the technology company providing email services. HOWEVER, HIPAA and the US Department of Health and Human Services now does allow you to OPT-OUT of this protection for email communication. Here is their rule:
“If individuals are notified of the risks and still prefer unencrypted email, the individual has the right to receive protected health information (PHI) in that way, and covered entities are not responsible for unauthorized access of protected health information while in transmission to the individual based on the individual’s request. Further, covered entities are not responsible for safeguarding information once delivered to the individual.” (US Department of Health and Human Services, 2013)
Therefore, please do not email us unless you have signed the OPT-OUT section we will provide you in our face-to-face meetings or sessions. IF YOU DO OPT-OUT, be aware that content related to your psychotherapy, counseling, or consulting sessions or meetings and/or any other content communicated between us via email is not completely secure or confidential. If you choose to communicate with us by email, be aware that all emails may be retained in the logs of your and our Internet Service Providers and/or technology company.
While it is unlikely that someone will be looking at these logs, they are, in theory, available to be read by the system administrator(s) of the Internet Service Provider and/or technology company.
You should also know that any emails we receive from you and any responses that we send to you become a part of your legal record. Note that we prefer using email only to arrange or modify appointments. At your request, we will communicate other, more personal information in unencrypted email (if you have OPTED OUT) at our professional discretion. We may choose not to do so and we will explain our rationale on a case-by-case basis.