Net303 Blogger Policy Primer
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  • This Policy Primer is neatly laid out with a good amount of text per slide and quite nicely designed. The images and graphics help to guide the reader around the presentation.
    The content control issued here is interesting, they allow you to retain ownership, however grant themselves the right to use your content for operating, promoting and improving services. It makes me wonder how much actual material from these services get used by google without the users knowledge.
    It is good to see google looking out for copyright issues and infringement, and from some brief research it appears google polices and enforces these infringements well.
    The use of material and age limit sounds similar to most ToS people have covered in their Policy Primers; Steam, Twitter, Youtube and Facebook among others. As is the case for harassment and impersonation, and spam/marketing harvesting and upload of malicious software, similar clauses exist for Steam ToS.
    The potential for marketing/email harvesting is definitely present in this kind of service though, and has great potential for abuse, with the most spam being from emails posted openly on websites (Why Am I Getting All This Spam? Unsolicited Commercial E-mail Research Six Month Report, 2003).
    I would be interested to see how rigorous google are at tracking false accounts allowing anonymous posting, as this could enable a lot of illegal activity as mentioned in the presentation (Barack, 2005).
    Great Presentation!
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  • @vcalle02

    Hi Vicky, I really enjoyed your policy primer and clearly found similarities between our two presentations, yours being Google and mine being a combination of both Google and Blogger. As you discussed in your comment, Google does not actually state the age restriction in their Terms of Service (ToS) and as Carr (2012) describes, it only appears to come into play when providing account details. In hindsight, I should have mentioned that the age restriction was not included in the ToS, however, it is included in Google Support in regards to setting up an account (Google, 2012). As stated, it is difficult to enforce age limitations online, subsequently making it harder to control what minors view, as there is an overall lack of supervision in cyberspace (Patchin & Hinduja, 2006). It is a complex issue as underage users can either innocently (or deliberately) find inappropriate content on Google, Blogger, and YouTube, and can also falsify personal details to gain access.

    As I did not cover the Privacy Policy, I found this part of your presentation really interesting. The amount of information that Google collects from its users has the potential to identify specific people and their online habits. If this data was released publicly it would replicate the AOL incident in which a user was identified and profiled through her search queries (Barbaro & Zeller, 2006). This reinforces Lessig’s (1998, p.10) notion that we are constantly being monitored online, therefore the “searchable remains waiting to be searched”. Your presentation also discusses concerns of an aggregated identity that is created when using multiple Google services and how this could be an invasion of one’s privacy. It certainly makes users more vulnerable, however, it could also be argued (in Google’s favour) that this collection of data will allow Google’s services to provide us with more relevant and efficient results (Lessig, 1998, p.19). It is definitely a contentious issue that will continue to discussed by the wider community.

    References:

    Barbaro, M., & Zeller, T. (2006, August 9). A Face is Exposed for AOL Searcher No. 4417749. New York Times. Retrieved September 23, 2012, from http://w2.eff.org/Privacy/AOL/exhibit_d.pdf

    Carr, J. (2012, July 28). Google and Age Limits. The Huffington Post. Retrieved September 23, 2012, from http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/john-carr/google-and-age-limits_b_1713530.html

    Google. (2012). Age Requirements on Google Accounts. Retrieved September 23, 2012, from http://support.google.com/accounts/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1350409

    Lessig, L. (1998). The Architecture of Privacy. Retrieved September 23, 2012, from http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/works/lessig/architecture_priv.pdf

    Patchin, J., & Hinduja, S. (2006). Bullies Move Beyond the Schoolyard. Youth Violence & Juvenile Justice, 4(2). Retrieved September 23, 2012, from Curtin Library Database.
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  • Your Blogger primer and others for services such as Instagram, Twitter and YouTube, cite a minimum age for use of service, which was not something I encountered for Google (see my primer http://youtu.be/AE4xyAd5pYg ). Blogger as with other services will not create an account for users who list their age as below the required minimum. According to Carr (2012), Google’s Terms originally stated to “join or use any [service]… you had to be capable of entering into a legally binding contract”. This condition changed when Google amalgamated its Terms and Policies (March, 2012) and the new minimum age became 13 years (although I cannot find mention of this age anywhere in Google’s Terms of Service and nor could Carr). Many of Google’s associated services, such as YouTube overtly reference this minimum age in their specific extra Terms - the exception to this is YouTube’s ‘mature content’ which requires users to be ‘18 years+’ and be logged into an account. This is paradoxical to the fact that users of any age can Google search, advertently, or inadvertently receive mature content. According to Carr (2012) you can change the search settings but unless logged in, you cannot lock these settings and prevent children from viewing inappropriate content.


    Given Google’s ease of use and breadth of reach for finding and accessing content, and possible associated problems or Bloggers potential for revealing private or even deeply personal information (children are not discerning in this regard), where does this position minors between 13-18 years? What happens to both the liabilities and responsibilities, if this age group is, technically (legally?) outside the Terms of Service? Carr (2012) asks “what duty of care does Google think it owes [them]”.


    I am sure we all know children under the age of 13 years with Facebook, YouTube or Blogger accounts. This age dilemma is further complicated when you consider the number of children under 18 years who maybe using Android devices and hence susceptible to monitoring, surveillance and significantly, tracking by Google. Once upon a time people used to ask if people knew where their children are but now I think we need to ask who else knows where our children are? Kay (2012) recommends creating a separate Gmail account for each service used, such as YouTube, Blogger or Android devices; the authors suggest that this will limit the amount of data compiled into a single profile.


    Enforcing age limits I think is one of the more difficult things for online services and I think that perhaps ultimately it is not something that is easy to enforce, but nor is it something that m/any appear to put much effort into. It is at least equally the responsibility of parent/s or caregivers to monitor their children’s activities - but it is also a broader social issue that, in my opinion, requires further investigation.


    Carr, J. (2012, July 28) Google and age limits. Huffington Post. http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/john-carr/google-and-age-limits_b_1713530.html


    Kay, M. (2012, February 2) Google’s new privacy policy – a safety workaround for you and your teen. YourSphere For Parents.
    http://internet-safety.yoursphere.com/2012/02/googles-new-privacy-policy-a-safety-workaround-for-you-and-your-teen/
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  • This Slideshare presentation describes Bloggers online policy very thoroughly and is presented in a very formal and professional manner. What I found most interesting in your presentation is that users must agree to, and follow Google’s Terms of Services statement and have a Google account prior to registering to becoming a user of Blogger. This differs to Twitter as it employs its own Terms of Services and Privacy Policy, of which more information can be found in an online policy primer located at http://www.slideshare.net/maroochydoregirl/online-policy-primer-for-twitter

    Interestingly both Blogger and Twitter share a number of similarities in the structure of their Terms of Service agreement and Privacy Policy. Both are free services and enable users to express themselves freely and share a variety of content and multimedia (Blogger, 2012; Twitter Terms of Service, 2012). Both require a minimum age requirement of 13 years, however this differs across Countries for Google, requiring users to be at least 14 years in Spain and South Korea, and 16 in the Netherlands (Google, 2012a). Similarly, in a guide discussing Instagrams Terms of Service which is located at http://www.slideshare.net/tweakedesign/a-littleguidetoinstagram
    , the minimum age requirement is 13 years also.

    Interestingly, the Terms of Service across all of these platforms notes that the users themselves are responsible for the content that they share online, and all users must respect copyright laws (Instagram, 2012; Google, 2012b; Twitter Terms of Service, 2012).
    In contrast to Twitters Terms of Services, both Google and Instagram have the right to access and use the content that it’s users have posted (Google, 2012b) and can use this content in any way they choose (Instagram, 2012). Although Blogger and Twitter do share similar content boundaries, one difference is that Blogger has a ‘mature content’ wall which allows some images that contain nudity and sexual activity to be passed through (Blogger, 2012).

    Nevertheless, all platforms share similar principles and do not condone pornography, especially that involving children, harassment, abuse, or crude content (Blogger, 2012; Twitter Terms of Service, 2012; Instagram, 2012).


    References

    Blogger (2012). Blogger Content Policy. Retrieved 14th September 2012 from http://www.blogger.com/content.g

    Google (2012a). Age Requirements on Google Accounts. Retrieved 14th September 2012 from http://support.google.com/accounts/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1350409

    Google (2012b). Google Terms of Service. Retrieved 14th September 2012 from http://www.google.com/apps/intl/en/terms/user_terms.html

    Maroochydoregirl (September 5, 2012). Twitter Policy Primer: What you need to know before clicking 'I Agree' [Slideshare Presentation]. Retrieved 13th September 2012 from http://www.slideshare.net/maroochydoregirl/online-policy-primer-for-twitter

    Tweakdesign (September 9, 2012). A Little Guide to Instagram’s Terms of Service (ToS) [Slideshare Presentation]. Retrieved 14th September 2012 from http://www.slideshare.net/tweakedesign/a-littleguidetoinstagram

    Twitter Terms of Service. (June 25, 2012). Retrieved 13th September 2012 from http://twitter.com/tos
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  • 1. Victoria JoblingCreative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial- ShareAlike 3.0 Australia
  • 2. Blogger is a free bloggingservice that is provided byGoogle.(Blogger, 2012; Google, 2012a)
  • 3. A blog is apersonal space inwhich users areable to expressthemselvescreatively andexercise their rightto free speech.(Blogger, 2012; Image Credit: Maryntbol,2012)
  • 4. Users are freeto share theirthoughts,opinions,images, art orwhatevertakes theirfancy.(Blogger, 2012; Image Credit:Bethany Actually, 2007)
  • 5. However, you have to abideby the rules …
  • 6. … and as this service isprovided by Google, youmust follow Google‟s Termsof Service.(Google, 2012a)
  • 7. Are there anyagerequirementswhen creatinga Googleaccount?(Image Credit: Askpang, 2007)
  • 8. It‟s important to rememberthat for many of Google‟sservices (e.g. Blogger) youmust have a Googleaccount.(Google, 2012a)
  • 9. And to have an account, there is anage requirement that variesbetween countries: Spain: 14 or older South Korea: 14 or older Netherlands: 16 or older All other countries (including US): 13 or older(Google, 2012b)
  • 10. Who has control andownership of my content? (Image Credit: Free Press Pics, 2012)
  • 11. Google and Blogger willNOT take responsibility forthe content that users shareonline.(Google, 2012a)
  • 12. YOU are solely responsible…(Google Terms of Service, 2012)
  • 13. … and if this content isyours, then it still belongs toyou and YOU retainownership rights.(Google , 2012a)
  • 14. That‟s cool,right?(Image Credit: TheRogue, 2009)
  • 15. Just remember, that byagreeing to the terms ofservice you are allowingGoogle to freely use yourcontent for “all their existingand future services” inwhich …(Google, 2012a; Terms of Service; Didn‟tRead, n.d.)
  • 16. … Google (and thecompanies they work with)have …(Google, 2012a)
  • 17. “a worldwide license to use,host, store, reproduce,modify, create derivativeworks […], communicate,publish, publicly perform,publicly display anddistribute” your content …(Google, 2012a)
  • 18. “for the limited purpose ofoperating, promoting andimproving [their] services,and to develop new ones.”(Google, 2012a)
  • 19. By the way, if at any timeyou decide to no longer useGoogle or Blogger, they arestill allowed to use yourcontent in the previouslymentioned license.(Google, 2012a)
  • 20. Are there anylegal issues Ishould beaware of?(Image Credit: Buckoffive, 2007)
  • 21. Do not post or uploadcopyrighted material if youdo not have permission touse it or have providedappropriate citation.(Google, 2012a)
  • 22. Copyrightinfringement isa serious issueand Googleabides by theU.S. DigitalMillenniumCopyright Act.(Google, 2012a; Image Credit:Fireblend, 2010)
  • 23. However, other jurisdictionsmay be taken intoconsideration whenreporting copyrightinfringement.(Google, 2012c)
  • 24. Google may respond in thefollowing ways: “Removing or disabling access” to the infringing content Notifying the person responsible Terminating access to the user‟s account (especially if they are a repeat offender)(Google, 2012c)
  • 25. If legal issues do arise atsome point and yourcountry provides “certainwarranties, like the impliedwarranty of merchantability,fitness for a particularpurpose and non-infringement” then …(Google, 2012a)
  • 26. … be aware that Googleand Blogger will excludethese warranties (whenpermitted by the law) and alllegal issues will be underCalifornian law in the U.S.A.(Google, 2012a)
  • 27. This may make appearGoogle unfairly bias andcould cause issues if yourrespective country differs inpolicy to California.(Rustad, Buckingham, D‟Angelo,&Durlacher, 2012, p.3 )
  • 28. (Image Credit: Monoglot, 2006)
  • 29. Blogger Content Policy
  • 30. Blogger firmly believes infreedom of expression andnot censoring information,but there are some contentboundaries.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 31. What am I not allowed topost or share? (Image Credit: Free Press Pics, 2012b)
  • 32. Adult Content is defined byBlogger as “images orvideos that contain nudity orsexual activity”.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 33. It is permitted but …(Blogger, 2012)
  • 34. … users need to mark it assuch and know that if theydo not comply it will be putbehind a „mature content‟wall.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 35. You are not allowed to useyour blog to profit from adultcontent.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 36. No incest or bestialitycontent is allowed.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 37. Blogger also maintains a“zero tolerance policytowards content thatexploits children”(Blogger, 2012)
  • 38. No child pornography orassociated links.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 39. No paedophilia or “contentthat encourages orpromotes sexual attractiontowards children”.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 40. If a user chooses to postsuch material their accountswill be terminated and theuser will be reported to theauthorities.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 41. No hate speech is allowed –i.e. content that “promoteshate or violence” towards aparticular person or group.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 42. No crude content – i.e.sharing shocking or graphicmaterial without properreasoning or context.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 43. No violence – do notthreaten other people orencourage others to takeviolent action against aperson or group.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 44. Do not violate copyright –this also includes providinglinks for “readers [to] obtainunauthorised downloads ofcontent”.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 45. Do not post personal orconfidential information ofanother person if it is notpublicly available.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 46. Do not impersonate othersor mislead readers tobelieve you are someoneelse.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 47. Do not engage in orencourage illegal activities.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 48. Do not upload or link peopleto spam.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 49. Do not attempt to installmalware or viruses withoutthe reader‟s consent.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 50. If you find a blog that doesviolate any of these rulesyou can report them toBlogger via either the „flag‟on the toolbar or through aform.(Blogger, 2012)
  • 51. This summary does notcover Google‟s PrivacyPolicy and it is highlyrecommended that eachindividual reads thoroughlythrough the Terms ofService, Privacy Policy andContent Policy before usingany of these services.
  • 52. References Askpang. (2007). Children and Computer [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/askpang/1748588982/in/phot ostream/ Bethany Actually. (2007). Paint in Tin [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/bethanygronberg/162102178 9/in/photostream/ Blogger. (2012). Blogger Content Policy. Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://www.blogger.com/content.g Buckoffive. (2007). Handcuffs [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/buckofive/429319452/in/phot ostream/ Fireblend. (2010). Keyboard [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/fireblend/4926609037/in/phot ostream/
  • 53.  Free Press Pics. (2012a). Diversity in Media Ownership [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/freepress/7419840024/in/photostre am/ Free Press Pics. (2012b). Public Media [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/freepress/7419839674/in/photostre am/ Google. (2012a). Google Terms of Service. Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://www.google.com.au/intl/en/policies/terms/regional.html Google. (2012b). Age Requirements on Google Accounts. Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://support.google.com/accounts/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answ er=1350409 Google. (2012c). Reported Alleged Copyright Infringement: Blogger. Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://support.google.com/bin/request.py?&product=blogger&co ntact_type=lr_dmca
  • 54.  Maryntbol. (2012). Use Your Own Voice [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/marynbtol/6984398413/in/photostre am/ Monoglot. (2006). Silly Graffiti [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/monoglot/216618501/ Rustad, M.L., Buckingham, R., D‟Angelo, D., &Durlacher, K. (2012). An Empirical Study of Predispute Mandatory Arbitration Clauses in Social Media Terms of Service Agreements. University of Arkansas at Little Rock Law Review, Forthcoming Suffolk University Law School Research Paper No. 12-18. Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2043199 Terms of Service; Didn’t Read. (n.d.). Retrieved September 9, 2012, from http://tos-dr.info/ TheRogue. (2009). Thumbs Up [Image]. Retrieved from http://www.flickr.com/photos/therogue/3422550639/in/photostre am/