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Copyright concerns are no ‘fantasy’ when it comes to T&Cs


If Simplexo’s concerns focused on who had access to ‘fantasy football spreadsheets’ this would not be an issue

“Over the past month we have been arguing that end users, consumers and business alike take a closer look at the clauses relating to copyright and ask who owns the copyright,” states Simon Bain from UK search specialists Simplexo.

“We have drawn attention to Google Drive’s T&Cs which state that ‘You retain ownership of any intellectual property rights that you hold in that content. In short, what belongs to you stays yours.’ However it then goes on to say: ‘When you upload or otherwise submit content to our Services, you give Google (and those we work with) a worldwide licence to use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works (such as those resulting from translations, adaptations or other changes that we make so that your content works better with our Services), communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute such content.“

Simon continued: “When challenged on this the official response from Google Drive was ‘You retain ownership of any intellectual property rights that you hold in that content. In short, what belongs to you stays yours.’ But a spokesman went on to say ‘Your fantasy football spreadsheets are not going to end up shared with the world unless you want them to.”

“But forgive me for taking a sharp intake of breath. Go back and read the T&C’s and you will see you are giving Google a worldwide license to use that content. And this is not some consumer-focused product that can be flippantly dismissed as only looking after your ‘fantasy football spreadsheets’. Google Drive is actively promoting itself as a business application. Corporate user, look at these T&Cs. There is a mis-match between what Google says the service should be used for – in other words 'Fantasy Football Spreadsheets' - and what we are using it for: corporate documents. Do not let the usage license catch you out!” he continued.

“What we are demanding is clarity on this issue of copyright ownership and unless that is addressed why on earth would any business use this service. So you tell me – who owns your work? And Google Drive is not the only one with these catchall, contradictory, legally confusing clauses. So if you value your creative work then take a close look at the T&Cs of providers and ask yourself this question: are they fit for purpose in the corporate world? The answer has to be no,” added Simon.

“And let's look at that corporate strapline ‘Google Drive. Keep Everything. Share Everything.’ Sorry but from where I am standing it is more like ‘Google Drive. Keeps Everything. Shares Anything.”


Notes to editors

About Simplexo Ltd
Simplexo Ltd is focused on delivering a new experience in federated search, and is founded on a solid history in electronic document management and retrieval. Today, Simplexo technology is delivering value to individuals and organisations in many industry sectors, including financial services, healthcare and local government.

For further information, please contact:
Nick Bird/ Dan Ward
Spreckley Partners Ltd.
T: + 44 207 388 9988