Geocities Alert!

Anitra Freeman (anitra@speakeasy.org)
Fri, 2 Jul 1999 01:18:36 -0700 (PDT)


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Yahoo, which recently acquired Geocities, has just made an alarming
change to their Terms of Service agreement.  All free-servers require
members to grant the server use of the webpage content that the user
submits, for well-defined, limited purposes -- to publish your page
across the Web, to promote your page, and to promote the server.  The
agreements have always been pretty standard and in line with what any
publisher could reasonably require.

Yahoo has gone way out of bounds.  They have announced (Section 8 of
their new ToS) that posting any content to any Yahoo service (now
including Geocities) automatically grants them  
   "the royalty-free, perpetual,
   irrevocable, non-exclusive and fully sublicensable right and license
   to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create
   derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such Content
   (in whole or part) worldwide and/or to incorporate it in other works
   in any form, media, or technology now known or later developed."

They claim the right to do whatever they want to with what you have
created.

If you already have a Geocities account, you cannot even modify it
without agreeing to the new terms of service -- that means you cannot
even *remove* your pages from Geocities without agreeing to the new ToS.
A local Seattle writer removed all of her pages by FTP and the next day
found herself locked out of her account.

The following sites have more information:
<http://www.wired.com/news/news/technology/story/20472.html>

More info:
<http://www.sitepowerup.com/boycottyahoo/boycottyahoo.htm>
<http://dragonflames.com/>

How to remove your Geocities site:
<http://www.egroups.com/group/wsba-digest/49.html>

Write On! (but don't write on Yahoo)
 / Anitra L. Freeman /
"Never doubt that a small group of imperfect people can improve the
world--indeed they are the only ones who ever have." Not Margaret Mead