So with the start of Google+ many have been critical of Google’s Terms of Service due to the fact Google “owns” your content. Meanwhile Google claims to be addressing privacy issues of Facebook in Google+ with the very focused sharing between “circles”
So what are some key differences between the terms of services?
Facebook found here: http://www.facebook.com/terms.php
Google’s here: http://www.google.com/accounts/TOS
As with most terms of service & license agreements both start with a whole lot of legal babble that even if you were thinking of reading them you probably would have stopped either from boredom or because you’d fallen off your chair into a deep sleep. That being said they are at about 500 pages shorter than the iTunes Terms of Service, which is the only reason I managed to finish reading them.
The main issue with Google comes up to section 11:
11. Content license from you
11.1 You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the Services and may be revoked for certain Services as defined in the Additional Terms of those Services.
11.2 You agree that this license includes a right for Google to make such Content available to other companies, organizations or individuals with whom Google has relationships for the provision of syndicated services, and to use such Content in connection with the provision of those services.
11.3 You understand that Google, in performing the required technical steps to provide the Services to our users, may (a) transmit or distribute your Content over various public networks and in various media; and (b) make such changes to your Content as are necessary to conform and adapt that Content to the technical requirements of connecting networks, devices, services or media. You agree that this license shall permit Google to take these actions.
11.4 You confirm and warrant to Google that you have all the rights, power and authority necessary to grant the above license.
On Facebook the similar section is part 2
- For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (“IP content”), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (“IP License”). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it.
- When you delete IP content, it is deleted in a manner similar to emptying the recycle bin on a computer. However, you understand that removed content may persist in backup copies for a reasonable period of time (but will not be available to others).
- When you publish content or information using the “everyone” setting, it means that you are allowing everyone, including people off of Facebook, to access and use that information, and to associate it with you (i.e., your name and profile picture).
- We always appreciate your feedback or other suggestions about Facebook, but you understand that we may use them without any obligation to compensate you for them (just as you have no obligation to offer them).
In essence both use of Google and Facebook give them rights to use any content you post or use on their services. The key difference is with Facebook that agreement terminates as soon as you remove the IP content or your account (Unless shared with others and they have not deleted it) Google’s agreement is however “perpetual, irrevocable” However keep in mind Google does specify the use of that content:
This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the Services and may be revoked for certain Services as defined in the Additional Terms of those Services.
Note Google Sites has different, additional terms which is located here:
Section 11.1 of the Terms of Service governing Google Sites is replaced in its entirety by:
In addition some professional photographers have raised concerns about using Picasa because of the policy mentioned at the top of the article. However Picasa itself has additional terms of service located here http://picasa.google.com/legal_notices.html
Picasa Legal Notices
Your Intellectual Property Rights
Google does not claim any ownership in any of the content, including any text, data, information, images, photographs, music, sound, video, or other material, that you upload, transmit or store in your Picasa account. We will not use any of your content for any purpose except to provide you with the Service.