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Author Topic: Anyone using Dropbox might want to read the TOS carefully  (Read 3552 times)

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KB

« on: July 04, 2011, 21:47 »
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Just read their recent TOS update email, and noticed this paragraph in the TOS (probably not new):

By submitting your stuff to the Services, you grant us (and those we work with to provide the Services) worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable rights to use, copy, distribute, prepare derivative works (such as translations or format conversions) of, perform, or publicly display that stuff to the extent reasonably necessary for the Service.

Happily, I don't use it to display stock photos, but if you do, you might want to reconsider that. Sorry if this is already well-known; sometimes I'm not in the loop.  ;D


« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2011, 03:29 »
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I think that would make it a violation of the iStock contract for any exclusive to use it, wouldn't it?

I've never seen this referred to anywhere else. It's outrageously wide-ranging. They could even sell your stuff on Zazzle or create their own stock agency.

« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2011, 04:37 »
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They could even sell your stuff on Zazzle or create their own stock agency.

Could they? It says: "to the extent reasonably necessary for the Service. "

In my mind (though I'm not a lawyer) that would exclude any use outside of the service they provide.

« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2011, 05:20 »
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They could even sell your stuff on Zazzle or create their own stock agency.

Could they? It says: "to the extent reasonably necessary for the Service. "

In my mind (though I'm not a lawyer) that would exclude any use outside of the service they provide.

You might be right, I'm not a lawyer, either.

« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2011, 06:42 »
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They could even sell your stuff on Zazzle or create their own stock agency.

Could they? It says: "to the extent reasonably necessary for the Service. "

In my mind (though I'm not a lawyer) that would exclude any use outside of the service they provide.

Exactly.  Nothing to freak over.  You're giving them permission to provide you with the service you want. 

Whether or not you can use these services, legally, including google image search, on content you cannot legally grant the license for (ie, work that is not yours), is the issue.

helix7

« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2011, 06:52 »
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This language appears in many service terms, and so far none of these companies have tried to use content in any way that would be potentially harmful to the content owner.


Is it shady and sort of unnecessary that companies grant themselves these licenses? Maybe. But so far it hasn't proved to be particularly harmful to anyone.

With the one exception being TwitPic, who granted themselves a much farther-reaching license to resell images uploaded to their service.

« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2011, 07:00 »
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It's absolutely unacceptable. Does it mean that if I have to work at home and want to copy images from my office to home computer via Dropbox, they can theoretically appear anywhere for free even when I'm not copyright owner but paid for them? Or preview of advertisment that I'm sending for approval but hasn't been published yet?

Uninstall. Flash disc isn't that bad.

« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2011, 08:06 »
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It's absolutely unacceptable. Does it mean that if I have to work at home and want to copy images from my office to home computer via Dropbox, they can theoretically appear anywhere for free even when I'm not copyright owner but paid for them?

Of course not.  Doesn't anyone understand the bit about 'necessary for the service'?

« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2011, 08:48 »
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It's absolutely unacceptable. Does it mean that if I have to work at home and want to copy images from my office to home computer via Dropbox, they can theoretically appear anywhere for free even when I'm not copyright owner but paid for them?

Of course not.  Doesn't anyone understand the bit about 'necessary for the service'?

I know it won't happen. But is there any exact definiton of what "reasonably necessary" means?

« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2011, 13:42 »
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I'd say that "to the extent reasonably necessary for the Service" translates as "in any way that makes us money".   And I disagree with previous posters who seem to be making rather optimistic assumptions about the future behavior of this company (and others like it). 

The real risks would come if and when they went under, and were madly selling assets and losing control over them.

helix7

« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2011, 13:50 »
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If anyone is so opposed to this sort of language in the terms of a service they use, I'd suggest reading up on the terms of other online services you use.

Right or wrong, this sort of thing is very common today.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2011, 13:52 by helix7 »

« Reply #11 on: July 06, 2011, 15:00 »
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I agree that terms like this are common, and I think it's time we all started kicking back against them.

« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2011, 15:13 »
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I agree that terms like this are common, and I think it's time we all started kicking back against them.

Are you saying you don't want to give them permission to use your content to provide you with the service you're requesting?  How would you word it so they would be able yo use your content to provide you with the service?

RacePhoto

« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2011, 15:20 »
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It's absolutely unacceptable. Does it mean that if I have to work at home and want to copy images from my office to home computer via Dropbox, they can theoretically appear anywhere for free even when I'm not copyright owner but paid for them?

Of course not.  Doesn't anyone understand the bit about 'necessary for the service'?

Yes, they aren't taking anything or using anything, it's pretty clear they need to have the right to manipulate things at our request. It also states that we are responsible for the content and use, not them. There's a CYA in this TOS for them as well. Might go back to the servers being seized at a large company because someone had child porn on them, so the feds came in an took everything! Shut down the whole business and took all their data. This way if someone puts up a collection of MP3s and the music police come, they can't shut down DropBox for hosting it. It's that easy.

Quote: This license is solely to enable us to technically administer, display, and operate the Services.


 

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