Terms of Service

Every time you sign up for an online service you have to “read” and agree to the Terms of Service (TOS).  I don’t know about you but I give them a glance and agree because (let’s be honest) you have to if you want to use the service.  There is no way to negotiate these terms and you have very little say in any changes the service may make.

Today I read a post on lifehacker about a site that keeps track of the TOS for 40+ online services.  The TOS from many popular sites (Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and many more) are included.  What do they want to accomplish?  From their ‘About‘ page

Terms-Of-Service and other website policies form the foundation of your relationship with social networking sites, online businesses, and other Internet communities. But most people become aware of these terms only when there’s a problem. TOSBack was created to help you monitor the policies for the websites you use everyday, and show how they change over time.

It’s a laudable goal and is a site that is worth checking every so often.

To see what changes have been made; find the service you are interested in and click the view changes link (click here for recent Craigslist changes).  You will see a side by side comparison with changes highlighted in yellow (added) or blue (deleted).

The site is brought to us by the Electronic Frontier Foundation who has been protecting our networked freedoms since 1990.

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