Terms and conditions

 These Blogging Website Terms and Conditions are designed for use with websites offering free blogging platforms and blog hosting.

These website terms and conditions are designed for acceptance through use. Rather than being required to read them and accept them using a checkbox or similar, visitors to your website are simply deemed to have accepted the terms and conditions as soon as they start using the site. Provision is also made in this document for user accounts. An option is therefore included should you wish to make acceptance of the terms and conditions a part of the account sign-up process.

Important information about the website operator is provided, including company registration details, trading address, and details of any relevant regulatory bodies or associations. It is important to note that for certain trades and professions there may be additional information that you must supply. Members of regulated professions should include professional titles, links to professional rules and other important details. Such details are not included in this template and those working in regulated professions should seek professional advice.

Intellectual property rights are given important attention in this document. IP in user content (i.e. blogs, posts, and comments) is treated separately from the rights in the content owned by the website operator.

Under these terms, in common with most websites offering similar features, users retain the copyright (and any other IP rights) in their content, and grant a licence to you, the website operator, by submitting it to the site. Users’ content is protected, however in common with mainstream blogging platforms, users are free to copy and share (often known as “reblogging”) each other’s content within the site. Users are required to identify the relevant author when doing this and an option has been included for those sites that do this automatically. A further option has been included, requiring users to contact another user directly if they wish to use that user’s content in a way not already permitted under the terms and conditions.

Of further relevance to creation of blogs by users is the Acceptable Usage Policy. Applying to the use of the website in general, but in particular to the creation of blogs, posts, and comments, the policy sets out clearly the types of material and conduct that will not be accepted. Sanctions for breach are also included.

A number of options are included in this template that allow you to choose how much flexibility to give to your users when it comes to copying and saving material from your site, as well as establishing deep-links to pages within your site on other sites. More linking provisions included in the template may also help to prohibit users from establishing links to your site from sites publishing offensive or unlawful content.

An optional reference to advertising has been included, informing users that advertising may appear on the site and/or in their blog, and prohibiting them from attempting to hide or remove it. A further option explains that the website operator is not responsible for the content of advertising, pointing out who is. Note that these provisions only represent a basic example and that more complex terms may apply depending upon the source of the advertising on your website.

Disclaimers and liability provisions in this document seek to protect website operators to the maximum extent deemed reasonable. In particular, and important for websites hosting user content such as blogs, is a disclaimer noting that opinions, views, and values expressed in such content are those of their respective authors and not necessarily of the website operator.

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