The agreement is useful to The Guardian to set the rules and guidelines for visitors, users and customers:
- Registration: inform users that they must agree to a set of rules when they register on your website or mobile app
- Disable or terminate accounts: inform users that their accounts can be disabled or terminated if abuses happen on your website or mobile app, e.g. spamming, swearing etc.
- Owner of content: notify users that you, the company, is the owner of the content appearing on your website or mobile app – except in cases where other users can post content (upload, share, create etc.) where the users are the owners of such content
- Changes to the agreement: users should be informed about upcoming changes to the agreement before the changes are applied.
- DMCA: The Guardian is also informing owners of copyright content that they can submit a DMCA notice to the website if they found infringing content in their DMCA clause.
- And more
These are only a few examples of what kind of clauses and disclosures you can add in this kind of agreement.
Because this agreement simply acts as a contract between you, the company, and the users using or accessing your website or mobile app, the agreement can be named as you’d like:
- Terms of Service (ToS)
- Terms and Conditions (T&C)
- User Agreement
- Conditions of Use
- And so on
eBay names it “User Agreement”:
Agreements like this are usually composed with the following clauses added:
- User Content, if the website or mobile app allows for users to create or share content
- Copyright infringement or DMCA (DMCA is for US only)
- Limitation of Liability
- Choice of law or Governing law
The page provides a quick and clear summary of their agreement:
- You must be at least 13 years old to open a Pandora account.
- Pandora can only be used in the United States, New Zealand, Australia and those countries’ respective territories.
- You are solely responsible for protecting your own account password and other account information.
- Unless you have an active DMX Pandora for Business account, Pandora is for personal use only. That means you can’t play Pandora for the patrons in your bar, coffee shop, etc.
- You can’t use Pandora to steal music or other content, and you have to listen to it through pandora.com or on a device officially supported by Pandora.
The rules set in this agreement are clear and they could have easily been set in a contract:
- Minimum age required to sign and accept the agreement
- The location where the service can be used in
- Rules on how to use the service: you can’t if you are a bar owner and don’t have a business account; you can’t use it to steal music by any means
- Informing users that the service can’t be used if they don’t agree to the agreement
Here’s how the introduction in their agreement informs users that they must agree to the presented agreement in order to use the service (the Instagram app):
It’s linked from the website’s footer as well:
- The text where you state that if your users don’t agree with the terms you posted online, in the presented agreement, they can not register an account.The enforceability of your agreement is important and it depends if you implement this agreement as a browsewrap or as a clickwrap agreement.
- A warranty disclaimer: this section discloses that you can not guarantee that the information provided on your website or mobile app is accurate, complete or suitable for any purpose.
- A termination disclosure in which you will reserve the right to terminate accounts that you may think are abusive towards other users of the community or against your business
- And so on
A Termination clause usually looks like this:
We may terminate your access to the Site, without cause or notice, which may result in the forfeiture and destruction of all information associated with you. All provisions of this Agreement that by their nature should survive termination shall survive termination, including, without limitation, ownership provisions, warranty disclaimers, indemnity, and limitations of liability.
The Terms of Service page of The Guardian mentions a similar “Termination” clause:
If, for any reason, we believe that you have not complied with these terms and conditions, we may, at our sole discretion, cancel your access to the registration areas of Guardian Site immediately and without prior notice.
Intellectual Property disclosure
Another useful clause is the “Intellectual Property” which can explain to users that the content, logo, and design of your website or mobile is your property (your company’s intellectual property).
The Site and its original content, features, and functionality are owned by My Company and are protected by international copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret and other intellectual property or proprietary rights laws.
- Links To Other Websites
- Governing Law
- Contact Information