8 Legal Things to Know About FaceBook

10 Aug 2007 (Fri)

READING LEGAL ANDREW’S LATEST POST on Facebook has just gotten me worried. He wrote (summarized):

“…have you bothered to read Facebook’s Terms of Service (”TOS”) or Privacy Policy? What legal relationship have you agreed to? Who has access to your data and personal details? I waded through their terms and policies. Here are some things I found.

  1. The terms can change any time…. you’re deemed to accept those changes by continuing to use the site. Even if you didn’t know of the change.
  2. Personal use only. LinkedIn is all about jobs and business. MySpace is full of profiles for companies and products. But Facebook is supposedly only for personal use.
  3. A single, individual user account…. you can’t have two accounts on Facebook.
  4. You’re giving up a HUGE license… did you know that posting content gives Facebook a license to do whatever they want with your content?
  5. Applications are NOT guaranteed safe… “installer beware.” A malicious application developer could break through Facebook’s security protocols and expose your info… but Facebook wouldn’t have to take the blame.
  6. Disputes are arbitrated under Delaware law. You’ve agreed to “final and binding arbitration” for resolving most disputes with Facebook.
  7. You surrender all submissions. If you send it to them, it becomes their property.
  8. Privacy is NOT guaranteed. Besides, Facebook’s own third-party contractors might misuse your information.


Afternote 11 Aug 2007: See also: Terms of Use and Privacy Policy on NETCoachAsia.com. Most terms in these statements have stipulated and approved by TrustSg.

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Posted by J.K. in Legal, Possibilities, Problems, Social Media | View Comments |

Can Map.gov.sg Replace StreetDirectory.com?

9 Aug 2007 (Thu)

TEDFOX AND COBALT PALADIN SUGGESTED that we try using map.gov.sg instead of StreetDirectory.com. So, I decided to try looking for “Rochester Park” on map.gov.sg AND StreetDirectory.com and found that:

  • I cannot simply enter “Rochester Park”. I must enter a block number. So, I plucked a number from the air: “9″.
  • After x seconds of inactivity, map.gov.sg would show a timeout message and then a timeout screen (!) as follows:
    Timeout screen on Map.gov.sg
  • As TedFox noted, “[map.gov.sg does] not provide any bus/mrt directions (which can be taken from the sbs website though)”. It also does not provide other useful information such as “Satellite Image”, “What’s nearby”, “Analyse Loc”, “Related Editorials” at the top of the StreetDirectory.com page:
    Related info on StreetDirectory.com
  • Nor does it provide this useful titbit of information at the bottom of the page:

    “Streetdirectory.com Rochester Park is located in Dover, Singapore. The Dover district is a small one filled with schools and tertiary institutions. Private schools such as Anglo Chinese School (Independent), or ACSI, and Anglo Chinese Junior College are located here, as well as public schools such as Fairfield Methodist Secondary School. Many locals study in ITE Dover to obtain technical certificates or go for a diploma education at Singapore Polytechnic. Many expatriates sent their children to United World College Southeast Asia (UWCSEA), one of Singapore’s international schools. These expatriates also enjoy going for a drink at Rochester Park, a popular cluster of restaurants and wine bars in Dover.”

  • Finally, the location map itself look like this on Map.gov.sg: Read the rest of this entry »
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Posted by J.K. in Copyright, Design, Possibilities, Problems, Singapore | View Comments |

Is this the end of StreetDirectory.com?

8 Aug 2007 (Wed)

I FEEL VERY PERPLEXED READING this report in The Straits Times (H2) this morning:

“A district court yesterday ruled that Virtual Map (Singapore)’s online maps on StreetDirectory.com had breached the Singapore Land Authority’s (SLA) copyright. The judge also ordered the company to destroy or deliver up all infringing material.”

I’ve been referring to the maps and related services (e.g. Bus/MRT directions) on StreetDirectory.com for years and found them very useful in helping me find my way around Singapore. Yes, we are living in a very small island (only 699.0 sq km). But this island also has a population of more than four million people and God knows how many streets and buildings. I’m sure at least thousands (or even hundreds of thousands) of other users find the site very useful too.

What a dreadful piece of news to read on the eve of our national day! Does this court case mean the end of a free and very useful reference site for Singaporeans and visitors? Or (still hopeful…) will SLA start providing this service instead?

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Posted by J.K. in Copyright, News, Possibilities, Problems, Singapore | View Comments |

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