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Google Updates Chrome's Terms of Service 318

centuren writes "In response to the reaction to Chrome's terms of service, Google has truncated the offending Section 11, apologizing for the oversight. The new Section 11 contains only the first sentence included in their Universal Terms of Service, now stating: 'You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services.'"
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Google Updates Chrome's Terms of Service

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  • So do they... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Leptok ( 1096623 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @08:28PM (#24882273)
    relinquish rights to the stuff that may have been created before the update?
  • by GuyverDH ( 232921 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @08:36PM (#24882357)

    If you uninstall Chrome, it leaves a few google'isms behind...

    Like googleupdate and a few other registry entries... /sigh...

    time to reload Winbloze...

  • Re:But.. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Darkness404 ( 1287218 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @09:08PM (#24882585)

    Heck, I'm surprised there's no community project out there to provide an EULA-free Chrome fork.

    2 main reasons. Right now, Chrome is essentially Windows only, and as we know, most people who use Windows don't care about EULAs. And secondly, Chrome isn't used much, right now people are wondering if it is the future or nothing more then a nice experiment, if Chrome stays around then expect Debian to fork it like they did with Mozilla. If it dies, expect a very small fork to continue development of it.

  • by Fastolfe ( 1470 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @09:09PM (#24882595)

    Did you file a bug?

  • Legality (Score:3, Interesting)

    by RockMFR ( 1022315 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @09:16PM (#24882637)
    The uproar and resulting change by Google has me thinking - what is the legality of all of this?
    • Would the Chrome TOS hold any weight at all in a court?
    • Would the former section 11 hold any weight? Could Google really have claimed a license to anything sent via the browser? (or whatever)
    • Under the current section 11, is there any way Google could still claim a license on future submissions via the browser?
    • The blog posting says this is retroactive. Would this statement hold any weight if Google went on to claim a license to anything sent via the browser?
  • Re:But.. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by TwistedSymmetry ( 1354405 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @09:24PM (#24882723)

    I'm sure "Chrome" is trademarked, and Google would certainly enforce its trademark if it chose to. This would be one way to sort of enforce the EULA: Don't allow the recompiled versions to be called Chrome.

    Linux distros are undoubtedly going to want to compile their own version, in addition to wanting to be free of the EULA (which is non-free).

    I wonder what Google will do about this? They either have to ditch the EULA (at least for linux), or be content with a re-branded version of their browser being bundled with linux distributions.

    I wonder how important the EULA is to Google, anyway? I personally don't understand why they feel they need one in the first place.

  • by jonnythan ( 79727 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @09:51PM (#24882935)

    I've used nothing but Firefox for years.

    I switched to Chrome, and I'm not looking back. It's that much better.

    So, it's stolen *one* Firefox user.

  • by eggnet ( 75425 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @10:07PM (#24883033)

    What does the tilde mean? I've seen it a lot lately.

  • Endangered species (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 04, 2008 @10:15PM (#24883085)

    i tried Google chrome for 4 hrs, then i saw that everything was logged !!
    uninstalled & they asked why ?!
    back Firefox. at least i can reduce the amount of data that are being used via gmail or other g services.

    ex of Google analytic options:

    *** Share my Google Analytics data...

    With other Google products only
    Enable enhanced ad features and an improved experience with AdWords, AdSense and other Google products
    by sharing your website's Google Analytcs data with other Google services.
    only Google services (no third parties) will be able to access your data.

    *** Anonymously with Google and others

    Enable benchmarking by sharing your website data in an anonymous form. Google will remove all identifiable information about your website,
    combine the data with hundreds of other anonymous sites in comparable industries and report aggregate trends in the benchmarking service.

  • by jonnythan ( 79727 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @10:20PM (#24883117)

    I used AdBlock Plus, Pennypacker, and FxIF.

    But Chrome is so much better I can live without those for the time being.

  • What I don't get... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rnturn ( 11092 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @10:25PM (#24883153)

    ... is why there are legal types out there that continue to slip these clauses or sections into legal agreements in the first place. Are they really that stupid that they think that as many times as these terms have been ferreted out and publicized that anyone is going to think "well, okay, I guess it's all right this time"? They don't understand that there enough people on the Internet that there will never be a time when there's no one looking for and exposing these sort of legal shenanigans.

  • by emptycorp ( 908368 ) on Thursday September 04, 2008 @10:40PM (#24883245)
    I uninstalled chrome for this exact reason and posted it in the "more info" box and said "retaining rights to everything created in the browser violates the 'Do No Evil' policy"

    I'm still not interested in installing it because they didn't change the bit about how they can send all usage data to them for monitoring, and that's just a bit too scary when you realize Eric Schmidt regularly meets with the head of the NSA.
  • by nephridium ( 928664 ) on Friday September 05, 2008 @02:22AM (#24884721)
    The Chrome browser binary you can download is *based* on the Chromium source code, which is free (see http://dev.chromium.org/developers/how-tos/build-instructions-windows [chromium.org] on instructions how to compile). The Chrome browser itself is NOT under the BSD license. I was quite disappointed when I realized that. - Just because they say "open source" somewhere doesn't make the Chrome browser itself open source.

    And what's this "installer" program to download the browser for you, why not just give us a download link to the browser itself? Furthermore, the browser will also *update* anytime it feels like it. Afaik there's no way to deactivate this *feature*.

    I'd love to see a site dedicated to compiling daily builds of the Chromium source code, maybe through in some forks by private fiddlers, because right now following the instructions from the link requires you to use a non open source tool "gclient" to download about 500MB of source and then compile it using M$ Visual Studio - and then hope it produces a working binary (oh, and have the time for this). So far I couldn't find anyone doing this and putting the binaries online yet - not even using google ;)
  • by TheP4st ( 1164315 ) on Friday September 05, 2008 @03:54AM (#24885183)
    In written form there is good reason for doing so.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarcasm#Highlighting_sarcasm_in_written_form [wikipedia.org]
  • Funny how their stuff routinely fails to fail...
  • by repvik ( 96666 ) on Friday September 05, 2008 @07:53AM (#24886335)

    Yeah, if you're only talking to stupids...
    The more intricate and hard-to-discover humor is, the funnier it is for the persons who actually get it. Dumbing it down to reach a wider audience lessens the impact. If you don't get it, accept it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 05, 2008 @11:05AM (#24888507)

    IMO this is evidence that Google has not developed any kind of interesting OS, otherwise the Linux version would have been out first. WHY?

    Any OS developed by Google would surely be non-windows based and likely linux-based with their intimate development expertise on that platform.

    With independent processes running each tab, and a lightning fast JS execution engine, the logical approach for OS development would be an active-desktopesque interface for KDE or Enlightenment or Gnome etc.

    Instead of having multiple desktops (which hardly anyone uses these days when u factor in mainstream use) you could have a multiple tabbed interface as default. Eg. user logs into OS and default is online javascript enriched interface on the default tab (which could be a static tab)
    Instead of other desktops - other tabs - all this WOULD be the desktop in JavaScript form, and it could access all OS features, eg. xterm, etc. but it wouldn't need to access the browser as this desktop would effectively be the browser - some form of Chrome.

    Moreover, the initial desktop would be highly customizable. A user could log in and immediately have a JavaScript enriched desktop tab with a google earth FRAME ebbedded in it, a google map FRAME embedded in it and a conventional HTTP FRAME embedded in it.

    The HTTP frame would be smaller than a conventional window and could be zoomed in and dragged around like in the ipod. This together with a Chrome version of Mozilla labs' Ubiquity (Ubiquity allows for streamlined net use -ie easily embedding a google map in a email and having it sent to your address book etc.) would provide a really excellent OS experience.

    But, if I thought of this then I'd say google labs did too, and there IS NO Linux version of Chrome yet so I must assume they are not far along in their desire to develop and OS, or at least an OS interface like KDE etc.

    IF, Chrome had been delivered first as an alternative to KDE, Gnome etc, I'd be excited but I don't think their utilizing / want to utilize it in this manner as yet.


  • by ErkDemon ( 1202789 ) on Friday September 05, 2008 @12:24PM (#24889527) Homepage
    Yeah, just because people who are well-educated realise that a contract is "bad" and legally unenforceable, it doesn't mean that the issuing of the contract to the general public is okay.

    Contractual clauses like this are harmful to the internet business environment. They set precedents and help to define the perception of common (bad) industry practice.

    If you're working at some little software company, and you want to add an outrageous statement to your user-licence, and you see that Google are already doing stuff like this, you're liable to think, well, Google are one of the largest corporations in the world, with access to as many lawyers as they like, and if they reckon that companies can get away with stuff like this, than my company is going to do the same.

    There are plenty of legal "terms and conditions" out there that aren't (or shouldn't be) legally enforceable ... but that doesn't mean that bad companies aren't still sheltering behind them, and that their customers aren't still being intimidated by what they've unwittingly agreed to.

    The argument that it doesn't matter because people don't read the legal stuff anyway also doesn't wash, because by including sloppy psuedo-legal "junk" clauses that obviously shouldn't be there, the company is encouraging end-users to think that
    (a) online legal contracts are worthless junk that're not worth reading, and
    (b) that if a contract appears to say something daft that potentially screws the customer over in an outrageous way, that they, the customer, don't need to worry because the company lawyers will obviously never attempt to use that clause in their favour.

    There are "bad" companies out there whose whole business model depends on exploiting contractual clauses that the customer either doesn't read, or thinks that the company won't try to enforce on the grounds of unreasonableness, so these contracts encourage a dangerous sense of complacency in end-users over what they sign up to online.

    On the plus side, Google did the right thing by acting immediately and emphatically to fix the problem once it had been brought to their attention.
    Good for them for doing that.

    But really, there was no excuse for a company as much in the spotlight as Google, whose business depends so much on public goodwill, releasing a contract in that state in the first place. People in large corporations get paid an awful lot of money to make sure that things like this don't happen.

To do two things at once is to do neither. -- Publilius Syrus