Customer Friendly Terms of Use Language

The Aviary web site provides a very nice example of customer focus. They provide the legalese version of the terms of use and then explain what this actually mean in is simple terms. Good job. Legalese example

2. SITE CONTENT. The Site and its contents are intended solely for the use of Aviary Users and may only be used in accordance with the terms of this Agreement. All materials displayed or performed on the Site, other than content developed or posted by User (“User Content”) including, but not limited to text, graphics, logos, tools, photographs, images, illustrations, audio and video, and animations (“Content”) are the property of Aviary and/or third parties and are protected by United States and international copyright laws. As between you and Aviary, however, you own and retain sole and exclusive right, title and interest in and to all of your User Content (subject only to the limited license therein granted to Aviary under this Section 2). The Services may enable Users to develop derivative works based on other Users’ Content. In the event you use the Services to develop a derivative work of another User’s Content with that User’s permission, as between you and the User who developed the original work, you own and retain sole and exclusive right, title and interest in and to your derivative work, and the User who developed the original work retains the sole and exclusive right, title and interest in and to the original work. In the event you permit other Users to use the Services to develop derivative works based on your User Content, as between you and the User who developed the derivative work, you own and retain sole and exclusive right, title and interest in and to your original work, and the User who developed the derivative work retains the sole and exclusive right, title and interest in and to the derivative work. All trademarks, service marks, and trade names which appear on the Site (other than those appearing in any User Content) are proprietary to Aviary and/or third parties. You shall abide by all copyright notices, information, and restrictions contained in any Content accessed through the Services.

Readable example

  • We own our website.
  • You own your content.
  • If you allow another user to make a derivative, you still own your work.
  • Please don’t disregard our copyright notices. 🙂
  • Some content may be licensed under Creative Commons.
  • You can download anything on the site for personal, non-commercial use only. Other uses are not OK (unless you purchased the work from the creator).
  • Just because we let you use our applications doesn’t give you any property ownership in the applications. You are just granted a license to use it.
  • Aviary is allowed to display within Aviary, any work you make available to everyone to view.
  • Additionally, we can allow the work to be used by a third party in a way which promotes Aviary (for example, using the work alongside a newspaper article about Aviary).
  • The content you contribute may not infringe on the property rights of others.

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