Setting the Tone for your API Terms of Service
21 Mar 2011
I wanted to establish a base Terms of Service
for my API area.
So I went and read the API terms of service from 15 top APIs
I found the opening paragraph says a lot about how a company approaches their API.
Here are the opening paragraphs for the top 15 API terms of service I came across:
Twitter maintains an open platform that supports the millions of people around the world who are sharing and discovering what's happening now. We want to empower our ecosystem partners to build valuable businesses around the information flowing through Twitter. At the same time, we aim to strike a balance between encouraging interesting development and protecting both Twitter's and users' rights.
So, we've come up with a set of Developer Rules of the Road ("Rules") that describe the policies and philosophy around what type of innovation is permitted with the content and information shared on Twitter.
Amazon Web Services
Thank you for your interest in the Google Maps/Google Earth APIs. The Google Maps/Google Earth APIs are a collection of services that allow you to include maps, geocoding, and other Content from Google in your webpages or applications.
These terms and conditions constitute a legal agreement between you and Rapleaf, Inc. ("Rapleaf," "We" or "Us"). By accepting these terms and/or using the Rapleaf Personalization API service ("Personalization API" or "API"), you are representing that you have the authority to bind the party being issued an API Passkey for this Personalization API and otherwise act on their behalf (you and any such party are collectively referred to as "You"). The "API Passkey" is the Personalization API service user passkey given to you by Rapleaf upon successful sign-up for this service. In exchange for use of and access to an API Passkey and Rapleaf's proprietary Personalization API and its technical specifications ("Specifications") you agree to be bound by these Rapleaf Personalization API Terms and Conditions (this "Agreement"). This Agreement shall take precedence over and supersede any prior agreement, whether oral or written, express or implied, between the parties, including any non-disclosure or confidentiality agreement.
Welcome to the Scribd, Inc. (hereafter referred to as Scribd) content management and file download platform consisting of web sites, services, software applications and networks that allow for the authorized download and distribution of digital content over the internet (the Scribd Platform).
Thank you for your interest in the eBay Developers Program, which allows you to build applications that usecontent from and interact with eBay-branded marketplaces around the world. Because we are committed toprotecting our users and our sites and services, we require you to abide by the following terms governingyour participation in the eBay Developers Program and your use of the eBay API, this eBay DevelopersProgram & API License Agreement (Agreement).
Below this introduction is quite a bit of important legal language. Please read it. Inside Etsy, we talk a lot about the importance of humanity, honesty and transparency in our communications. So, before you read on to the important legalese, we want to share a few thoughts in human and honest terms.
BY INTERACTING IN ANY WAY WITH THE FOURSQUARE API, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO REQUESTING CREDENTIALS OR MAKING API CALLS, YOU OR THE ENTITY OR COMPANY THAT YOU REPRESENT ("YOU") UNCONDITIONALLY CONSENT AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY AND A PARTY TO THESE TERMS AND CONDITIONS (AGREEMENT).
Facebook Platform is an extension of Facebook, whose mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.
Platform applications and developers are required to comply with the following documents:
- Statement of Rights and Responsibilities: requirements for anyone who uses Facebook.
- Principles: the spirit of the law for Platform.
- Policies: the letter of the law for Platform.
Thank you for using the Flickr application programming interfaces (the "Flickr APIs"). By using the Flickr APIs, you agree to the terms below. If you disagree with any of these terms, Flickr does not grant you a license to use the Flickr APIs. We reserve the right to update and change these terms from time to time without notice. You can always find the most recent version of these terms here http://www.flickr.com/services/api/tos/.
The first paragraph sets the tone as strictly legal, business or welcoming you to the API community.
How will you set the tone for you API terms of service?