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Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Cloud: Who Owns the Uploaded Material?

I'll be honest and straightforward with my readers that I'm not much of a fan of the Cloud...at least being used completely without physical storage drives like we have now. I do enjoy Google Music (now known as Play Music or something like that) as well as Clouds used for storage space like back-ups.

But this is something that I never thought about: who owns and is responsible for your uploaded content?

It's been common sense that you shouldn't upload material that you don't own or own the license for which is why torrent sites are being attacked, the LimeWire service was legally shut down, as well as upload sites like MegaUpload have been taken down. It's been common sense because this information is pretty well open to any and all peoples such as law enforcement to download and check out which can lead to legal troubles.

But who owns and is responsible for your uploaded content? According to the LA Times article, it varies upon each service's EULA. With services like Google's newest Cloud service, Google has written that "When you upload or otherwise submit content to our Services, you give Google (and those we work with) a worldwide license to use, host, store, reproduce, modify, create derivative works (such as those resulting from translations, adaptations or other changes we make so that your content works better with our Services), communicate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute such content." To me, this scares me especially if I was working on a patent or new innovation/invention/program. This would mean, at least to me, that Google has the right to use your information. Is that scary to you too or did you translate that to something else?

Other Cloud services say something similar to Google's and others say that they will not use your uploaded content at all except to modify it to work with their systems.

What do you guys think of this? What do you think of the Cloud in general?

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