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Summary of Terms of Service update
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theljstaff wrote in lj_policy
We felt it was important with the changes to the Terms of Service to have a post here which identifies some of the key changes. We also want to give you all the opportunity to ask any questions you have regarding the changes, or any questions you have about the Terms of Service & Privacy Policy in general.

While a lot of text has changed, these changes do not represent drastic changes in how the Terms of Service are enforced, which is described in our Abuse Policies. The changes to the Terms of Service were primarily done to clarify a number of situations which we did not feel were properly reflected in the previous version of the Terms of Service.

We have exactly one policy change to announce: we no longer allow children under the age of 13 to use the service. The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires service providers to take a number of special actions regarding accounts belonging to children under the age of 13, one of which is obtaining parental permission. We have noticed that almost no parents have opted to grant permission to their children to use the service since we began this program several years ago, and LiveJournal is just not a platform which was ever intended to be used by children.

Now that we've covered the policy change, here is a brief summary of the changes to the Terms of Service which we feel are most significant:

* We have established that we act as a safe harbor on the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) in several places, and have further clarified that we do not claim any rights to, nor liability for, any content posted by users of the service in several places (Sections X, XIII.)

Section X (Termination):

* There is now a brief section explaining that we do not allow malicious Search Engine Optimization (SEO) activity.

* There is now a section regarding offensive content, which notes that we may suspend accounts, remove content, or flag adult content as we see fit to do so. It should be emphasized that this does not represent a change in policies, but briefly identifies the most common activities that result in these actions being taken. What actions are typically taken in response to these activities still follows the guidelines of our Abuse Policies.

* There is now a section regarding purging inactive accounts. We have made periodic announcements in news about these activities over the past few months, and felt that it was important to note within the Terms of Service that inactive accounts may be purged as part of our routine site maintenance.

* There is now a section regarding U.S. court orders and police investigations.


Section XIII (Journal Content):

* We more clearly urge users to flag their own content as adult where applicable, and state that LiveJournal may apply adult content settings to entries or journals/communities if we feel it has not been set appropriately.

These are the most significant changes to the Terms of Service. This post should not be interpreted as a comprehensive list of all changes made, nor should it be used in place of reading the actual Terms of Service.

That said, we welcome any comments, concerns, or questions you may have!

Not that it affects me, but with the "no children under 13" rule, will you be deleting existing accounts of people that fall into that category, or will you allow it if they have parental consent?

(I figured I'd ask because it's bound to come up)

Also answered in the same comment in news, but no, we will not be deleting existing accounts that have gone through our age verification process.

* There is now a section regarding U.S. court orders and police investigations.

Is this new policy, or just an update to the ToS that represents existing policy? (I don't see why it would be the first, but I'm just wondering.)

Edited at 2010-12-17 09:11 pm (UTC)

It is an update that represents existing policy.

With every new account I create though, the site thinks I'm under 13, because of a mistake with an RP account where I entered the wrong birth year :/

Will I just no longer be able to make accounts? (I mainly do it for RPing)

Go ahead and open a Support request about that and we'll see if we can find the source of the problem so you can be cleared to create new accounts again.

* We have established that we act as a safe harbor on the DMCA in several places, and have further clarified that we do not claim any rights to, nor liability for, any content posted by users of the service in several places (Sections X, XIII.)

=============

This mean you're unbanning mightygodking and others?

====•••=======

There is now a section regarding offensive content, which notes that we may suspend accounts, remove content, or flag adult content as we see fit to do so. It should be emphasized that this does not represent a change in policies, but briefly identifies the most common activities that result in these actions being taken. What actions are typically taken in response to these activities still follows the guidelines of our Abuse Policies.

=================

So codifying the random whimsical way it's been asserted in the past?


I can't comment on specific users' suspensions, but in the context of copyright policy, one of the provisions of the DMCA is that service providers must refuse service to people who repeatedly infringe upon the copyright of others.

we do not allow malicious SEO activity.

I thought that was new. Please define 'malicious'? I have in the past run coordinated google bombs, mostly as experiments but partly as political stunts, and I'd like to know if they would count.

Given also that some memes and similar are created as SEO techniques, a clear definition would be useful.

Oh, I'd also like to know what happens to existing child accounts, my fiance runs one for her daughter, who doesn't have direct access herself.

SEO/Spam isn't something I think we can define in a black & white context, and ultimately the word "malicious" just implies that if we believe SEO activities are being done in a way which provides absolutely no content of any interest to other users, and/or engages in activities which are actively degrading other users' experience, we will take some action.

The most common types of SEO activity we act on are journals who serve no purpose other than SEO, and those who engage in mass friending/commenting/private messaging.

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There's a lot of content on LJ that's suitable for teens.
Quite frankly, the vast majority of content is teen-appropriate. There's not actually that much adult content.

Also, 13 is the age that US law says children can make their own accounts for online services.

If you want an 18+ platform, try JournalFen

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насчет вредоносной поисковой оптимизации - это интересно:)

видела несколько блогов, состоящих из однотипных записей вроде "кисти фотошоп скачать здесь", банхаммер по ним плачет:)

В принципе мало изменений и еще меньше самостоятельности

Gee, what a vital and necessary comment. DL;DR.

Очень мешают и надоели ЖЖ пустые, но которые проникают в другие ЖЖ с разными рекламами.

Я активно посылаю их в бан, мне пишут "да-да, вы уже не первый раз их посылаете, но у нас нет времени чтобы с ними разобраться" и спамер пишет в жж уже три недели, не меньше Неоперативненько, однако.

Неактивные дневники определяются следующим образом:
Пользователь удалил учетную запись.
Доступ к дневнику приостановлен более шести месяцев подряд в связи с нарушением настоящего Соглашения.


Означает ли это, что за бездействие (отсутствие записей в течение долгого времени) дневники удаляться все-таки не будут?


Inactive Accounts are defined as follows:
The user has deleted the Account.
The Account has been suspended for a minimum of six months due to violation of the TOS described herein.</a>

Does it mean that Accounts will not be deleted because of inactivity (absence of records during the long time)?

That is how I read it. At least until they change the TOS again.

Что ж вполне нормальные изменения.

Я могу написать Медведеву несколько строк?

Могу ли я написать пару строк в блог Президента? Или только писать коментарии на на Его выступления?

Re: Я могу написать Медведеву несколько строк?

We have no policy which restricts you from expressing your opinion about others.

This all sounds very reasonable to me. I'm suspicious that I've missed something!

Edited at 2010-12-17 09:43 pm (UTC)

How about a policy requesting that the first use of an acronym in any post include an explanation of the letters used?

For example in your 3rd paragraph: "The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires..." is quite informative.

But then you state "...here is a brief summary of the changes to the Terms of Service which we feel are most significant:
...we act as a safe harbor on the DMCA in several places...
...we do not allow malicious SEO activity..."

These statements convey no meaning without an explanation of the acronyms used. WHAT'S THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THAT?

Thanks for pointing that out -- I've gone in and edited the post to provide those definitions.

?

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