By reading this series and using this website, you agree to my Terms of Service and acknowledge that this is not legal advice but for informational purposes only. If you are a Colorado business with an online presence, please contact me, Elizabeth Lewis, your online business attorney for more information about how you need to structure your business, what you need to do to make sure your website complies with all the laws and protects you, and for all your business needs at 720-258-6647 or Elizabeth.Lewis@eclewis.com.
The sixth section of Facebook’s TOS goes over what a user can do (“User Conduct”). Like most sites, Facebook wants to have some control over how you use their site. Among the things that want to ensure are that you don’t use Facebook for illegal purposes, to harass others, to distribute copyrighted material for which you don’t own the copyright, spam others, solicit information from people under 18. In addition to these things, there is a list available on Facebook’s TOS. Most of these are pretty self-explanatory and almost everyone should understand the reasoning behind the stuff that isn’t allowed.
One thing with Facebook’s TOS that may differ from other sites (most notably Twitter) is that you can only have one account. If you create two accounts on many sites like I do to keep business and family/friends separate, you can’t do this on Facebook under the Sept. 23, 2008 TOS. You also cannot register an account for a group or entity. Therefore, if you want to register an account for your company, you would need to contact Facebook for permission since this would be seen as an entity.
Another thing that businesses need to be careful of is that you are only suppose to use your account for personal, non-commercial use only. Although Facebook doesn’t appear to be enforcing this strictly now, as I know many individuals who are starting to use Facebook to help advertise their business, individuals and businesses should note that this is against the policy.
So what does this mean for you? If you have a business, you may want to limit the content that users can post on your site. For instance, you may want to limit people to one account or not allow vulgar language. If you are starting a website, it is a good idea to talk to an attorney about what content you should allow and what content you should keep off your site.
For more information about terms of services, or if you need a terms of service written for your company, please contact me, Elizabeth Lewis, your business attorney at 720-258-6647 or Elizabeth.Lewis@eclewis.com.