Conditions of Use

  1. About these Conditions
  2. What Scholar Does
  3. Student Users
  4. How You Promise to Behave in this Publishing Environment
  5. Copyright
  6. Your Business and Other People's Business
  7. Things for which Common Ground will not be Responsible
  8. Privacy and Security
  9. University of Illinois Terms

1. About these Conditions

1.1 Welcome to Common Ground’s Scholar environment! We’re pleased to have you use Scholar for your knowledge work and learning. However, please be aware that everything you do in Scholar is subject to the following conditions of use. These conditions of use are a contract between us (Common Ground) and you (the user). If you use this online software, you must agree to the following terms and conditions.

1.2 These conditions may be updated from time to time. The current agreement is posted at the foot of every page of Scholar and replaces all earlier agreements. Please return to these conditions regularly to check whether there have been any changes. This agreement is governed by the laws of Illinois, USA, where Common Ground’s office is located.

2. What Scholar Does

2.1 Scholar is an online software environment that allows knowledge-producing communities such as publishers or teachers and students in universities or schools to collaborate in online discussions and the creation of works, and then communicate these discussions and works to private groups or to the public through the Internet.

2.2 Scholar is a piece of web software. Before you use Scholar, you need a computer with Internet access, a recent release of a web browser (see documentation for supported browsers), and software for creating digital content.

3. Student Users

3.1 Users who are under 18 years of age must have a student account managed through their school by teachers and other adults affiliated with the school. In these cases, the school agrees to explain these conditions to the student user and to make sure that the student user abides by them. Administrators of student accounts must agree to comply with the laws of their locale relating to child online privacy and parental rights. In seeking to act as administrators of student accounts, authorization is required from the school or relevant educational authorities with whom they work.

3.2 Students may enter personal information into Scholar. Such information is not sharable beyond the organization to which the student belongs. Organizational administrators obtain student licenses and maintain student accounts. It is their responsibility to seek and secure parent or guardian consent to use Scholar before opening student accounts, as required by local laws. Common Ground may at any time request evidence that that this consent has been obtained, and reserves the right to remove such accounts when evidence is not provided.

4. How You Promise to Behave in this Publishing Environment

4.1 This agreement is a software license. Under this license, only one person is allowed to log in under a single username and password. You must never provide your password to anybody else.

4.2 You must not mislead Common Ground or your collaborators in the creation of a work (other creators, contributors, and publishers), about your true identity or date of birth. All personal details entered into the private, collaborations space in this online environment must be true, accurate, and up to date. These details will only be disclosed to other people working in this environment that you choose or, or if you are a student, to appropriate account administrators.

4.3 You must not enter Scholar through any other identity other than your own, using your own, unique user name and password. This being said, Common Ground takes no responsibility for the actions of those who have broken the terms of this agreement by entering under false identity.

4.4 Material posted to Scholar, including the works published through this software, must not infringe upon another person or organization’s copyright, patent, trademark, or trade secret. It must not be defamatory, libelous, unlawful or incite unlawful behavior. It must not be obscene, invasive of another person's privacy, harmful of children, hateful, harassing, racially or ethnically objectionable, abusive, threatening, harmful, fraudulently deceptive, in breach of confidentiality, or in contempt of court. If your material is alleged to be harmful in any of these ways, Common Ground may remove it.

4.5 You may not use this software environment for 'spamming' or activities associated with spamming, or share or transmit files that are corrupt, have viruses, or which will do harm to the usability of anybody's computer who is receiving these files.

4.6 Everything you post to the Scholar website or create as a published work is your sole responsibility, such as text, images, sound, or video material. As Common Ground does not review or screen any of the material that is posted to the web or published using the Scholar software, we can take no responsibility for any of this content — yours or other people's.

5. Copyright

5.0 All software and content in the Scholar environment is copyright and is protected by international copyright laws.

5.1 Your Copyright

5.1.1 The copyright of all material posted in the Scholar software is owned by the person posting the content, or the organization that has given a person permission to post content on that organization's behalf.

5.1.2 All material formally published through the software is subject to the copyright agreements negotiated between the creators and admins using the Scholar software and stated publicly in the copyright notices published with each work.

5.1.3 Permissions to copy or republish any material posted to the web or published as a work through this site can only be secured by contacting the copyright owner directly.

5.1.4 By sharing posts and works privately or publicly in Scholar, you agree to give Common Ground a non-exclusive, royalty free license to display your work.

5.2 Other People's Copyright

5.2.1 As a part of this agreement, you agree to respect other people's copyright. Material owned by other people or organizations can only be used with their permission, or within the bounds of 'fair use', or when a particular piece of content is in the public domain. You are responsible for keeping a record of submissions, which you must provide to Common Ground when we request it.

5.2.2 In the case of a copyright dispute, Common Ground reserves the right to remove material. You also agree deal with any such disputes directly, taking full responsibility for the consequences of breeches of copyright.

5.3 Our Copyright

5.3.1 This agreement is a license to use the Scholar software. This software, and the code upon which it is based, is the property of Common Ground. You agree not to copy, distribute, lend, sell, rent, lease, or modify or reverse engineer either the whole or part of this software without our written permission.

5.3.2 Common Ground's rights are limited to the intellectual property it has created, but not any underlying programming languages or open source software that we have used.

6. Your Business and Other People's Businesses

6.1 Organizations or people may use the Scholar software to publish other creators' works. As a consumer, you may use Scholar to access or purchase works. Scholar promises to offer no more than a medium for these transactions. All responsibility for content rests with the organizations and persons who have chosen to use Scholar.

6.2 Common Ground does not endorse any products marketed through its software and accepts no liability or responsibility for any aspects of any of the works published using the software. If you have any difficulties, please contact the organization or admin directly.

7. Things for which Common Ground will not be Responsible

7.1 Scholar is a continuously evolving environment. Common Ground may at any time and without notice modify or discontinue all or part of its service. You agree that Common Ground shall not be liable to you or anybody else if this happens.

7.2 Common Ground will not take responsibility for lost content or temporary lack of access to your work. We recommend that you maintain your own backup of material of importance or value to you, independent of and separate from the Scholar storage facilities. You can do this, for instance, by exporting versions of works.

7.3 Common Ground does not warrant that its software will be error free, continuously and permanently available, or secure. Access to material generated by the software is at the user's own risk, and Common Ground takes no responsibility for damage done to the user's computer system, or content stored on that system, as a consequence of access to the software or content stored using the software.

7.4 Common Ground may without notice remove accounts which have not been used for more than twelve months or when their owners have not paid license or other fees within 30 days of their due date. We take no responsibility for the consequences of removing these accounts.

7.5 You acknowledge that Common Ground has no control over content. The copyright of all content entered into or uploaded into Scholar remains with creators and publishers. The responsibility for that content is entirely theirs. Common Ground may, however, at its own discretion terminate without notice any person's or organization's access to Scholar and remove any part or any of the content that a person or organization has stored on our server. We will not be liable to you or any other person or organization if we take any of these actions.

7.6 We do not guarantee the accuracy or legality of any content posted to the web or published using the Scholar software. As a consequence, we will not accept any claims made against us in relation to this content.

7.7 Common Ground will not take any responsibility for the use of your account by other people, with or without your permission, and expressly forbids you from permitting another person to use your account or giving them your password.

7.8 You agree to indemnify Common Ground against any claims that may be made against us as a consequence of the way you have used this software environment, and any related costs if we are required to deal with these claims.

8. Privacy and Security

8.1 Common Ground respects the privacy of the users of its software and the visitors to the sites generated using the software. No personal or contact data will be passed on to any other person or organization without your permission, or unless we are required by law. Common Ground may from time to time contact all users of Scholar on matters connected with its software and related services.

8.2 Scholar has private collaborations spaces and public communications spaces. All data entered into the private collaborations space, including all contact details, will be accessible to persons and representatives of organizations with whom you choose to collaborate (such as other creators or contributors to a work, and admins as nominated or agreed by you). None of this data will be divulged to any other person or organization, nor will it be made public through the web, without your permission or posting by you to your Scholar-generated web space.

8.3 Scholar requires that "cookies" are enabled on your web-browser. Data which is collected using cookies will not be used to track individuals; it will only be aggregated, for instance as a part of general website usage statistics made available to publishing administrators. No individuals will be identified.

8.4 Personal information, credit card or bank account details, content not yet posted to the web and unpublished content is all stored securely on the Common Ground server. It can only be accessed by persons or organizations who have permission to access that data.

8.5 Although Common Ground makes every endeavor to secure the contents transmitted through Scholar, it does not take responsibility for breeches of security or improper uses of usernames and passwords.

8.6 Common Ground may communicate with you from time to time through the messages service in Scholar, and through your email address if you have provided one.

8.7 Common Ground may use data generated by Scholar for the purposes of research and development. If research results are published, all data will be anonymized.

9. University of Illinois Terms

The following terms will apply because you (“End User”) are licensing, using, or are provided access to software or services (“Company Product”) that incorporates, or is based on, certain software (“University Software”) of The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois (“University”).

9.1 Rights End User may (1) use the University Software only as an integral component of the Company Product; (2) make copies of the Company Product for back-up or archival purposes only (provided that all notices are included as specified in Section 4 below); and (3) End User may use the Company Products for its internal business purposes only, and will not sublicense, redistribute, or otherwise allow third parties to use them directly or indirectly, whether on a time sharing, remote job entry or service bureau arrangement. Any use of the Company Products beyond these limitations will be subject to Company’s prior written consent and payment of the applicable fees.

9.2 Ownership All patents, copyrights, trade secrets and other proprietary rights in or related to the University Software are and will remain the exclusive property of University, whether or not specifically recognized or perfected under applicable law. End User will not take any action that jeopardizes University’s proprietary rights. End User acknowledges and agrees that it acquires no right in the University Software, except the limited use license specified in Section 1. University will own all rights in any copy of the University Software or any derivative work thereof, including any improvement or development of the University Software.

9.3 Source Code The End User is not entitled to receive the source code version of the University Software, and under no circumstances may the End User recipient reverse-compile, reverse-assemble, decompile, disassemble, decrypt, extract, or otherwise reverse-engineer or modify the object code version of the Company Product.

9.4 Notices The End User must reproduce and include the copyright notice(s) and proprietary legend(s) of University, as applicable, as they appear in the Company Product and on any media containing the Company Product and on all copies of the Company Product prepared by the End User.

9.5 Third Party Beneficiary End User acknowledges that the provisions of its agreement with Company, including, but not limited to these Terms (“Agreement”), are intended to inure to the benefit of University as a third party beneficiary of this Agreement, and University will be entitled to enforce such provisions against End User. End User further acknowledges that University accepts its third party beneficiary rights hereunder and that such rights will be deemed irrevocable.

9.6 All warranties, maintenance, and support (if any) with respect to the University Software and Company Products will be provided solely by Company and not by University. University makes no warranties or representations concerning the University Software, Company Products or any other materials, services, information, or technology, and University expressly disclaims all such warranties and representation, express or implied, including, but not limited to, any implied warranties or merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement.

9.7 Under no circumstances will University be liable for consequential, indirect, special, punitive or incidental damages or lost profits, whether foreseeable or unforeseeable, based on claims of end user or any other party arising out of breach or failure of express or implied warranty, breach of contract, misrepresentation, negligence, strict liability in tort, failure of any remedy to achieve its essential purpose, or otherwise. Notwithstanding the form (e.g., contract, tort, or otherwise) in which any legal or equitable action may be brought. In no event will University be liable for damages or losses that exceed, in aggregate, the amount of fees paid by the end user for the products that gave rise to such damages or losses for each respective breach or series of related breaches, and end user agrees that it must first pursue and exhaust all remedies against company before pursuing any remedy (if any) against University.

Common Ground Publishing
University of Illinois Research Park
2001 South First St., Suite 202
Champaign, IL 61820 USA

Tel: +1-217-328-0405
Fax: +1-217-328-0435