- pardon my tardy reply, I've had a busy couple of days...
First, this has never been about me or my content. My concerns are broad and inclusive. This is about everyone's content in an established online community dating back 20+ years.
To further clarify, I stand behind everything in this post
, and all of my other posts on the subject "Forum Issues..." I've tried my best to remain well-reasoned and civil. If you (or anyone) feels differently, by all means call me out.
Again, have I been unclear, ambiguous, or inconsistent? Has anyone who's addressed similar concerns? I don't wish to waste anyone's time rehashing what's already been said. I'm much more interested in what others (in particular folks with legal backgrounds) may have to say on this.
You have absolutely been well-reasoned and civil.
What's been clear to me is that many people have concerns about what Edward owns and who owns the content posted. I can't speak to the first concern. I'm not an expert in the second, but "you retain the copyright" seems pretty unambiguous. To me, that sort of renders the first concern (about what Edward owns) moot.
At the risk of rehashing things that have already been discussed, I don't think you're totally clear in the post you linked. The part of that post that has to do with user content seems to be this part:
But if site policies on use of personal information and content tilt in favor of Edward (and his investors[?]), I can’t imagine that anyone from the “professional” world of architecture, urbanism, academia, or the creative realm will be comfortable participating.
I suppose this refers to the licensing provision, but I'm not certain what it is you're concerned could happen. Apologies if I'm being obtuse and have missed the obvious. Looking back to the earlier skeptical responses in that thread (including the one you linked), the concerns were mostly esoteric, but at a certain point they became pointedly about the Terms of Service. So my post above was very much keeping with the Terms of Service concerns, rather than the more philosophical, communitarian concerns. And to be honest, I don't think you all will be satisfied in that given Edward's management style.
So, in keeping with the ToS, let's actually dig in to the provision that Justin7 quoted some time back:
You are granting us with a non-exclusive, permanent, irrevocable, unlimited license to use, publish, or re-publish your Content in connection with the Service. You retain copyright over the Content.
These terms may be changed at any time without notice.
I may be wrong, but I believe the licensing provision allows things like quoting posts, splitting posts into new threads, etc. As I see it, the copyright clause negates any possible use of user-generated content that would be objectionable. But I'm open to corrections from someone who knows better. This
is what I'm asking about when I keep asking "what are your concerns?"
As far as "these terms may be changed at any time without notice", I agree that this should be concerning to any web user. Particularly the "without notice" provision.
I'm not sure I understand the term "in-house advertising" -- for purposes of promoting aB to another of Edward's holdings (i.e. UrbanToronto)? Please explain.
For example, are you concerned that Edward could use photographs hosted on the site on banners, etc.? As I read the ToS, I don't think he could do that without express permission from the copyright holder.
I did find @Arlington post
yesterday of interest. I'm surprised no one's commented on it.
I didn't notice it, since he posted it in another thread. To be honest, I wouldn't feel very comfortable wordsmithing a ToS because I'm not a lawyer, and I don't fully understand the legal implications behind what Arlington wrote.