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Website Acceptable Use Policy

Why is an Acceptable Use Policy important?

An Acceptable Use Policy is like laying out the set of rules that players are to adhere to when playing a game.

The players need to know how to play the game, what is fair and what is not allowed. In this case, the players are your website visitors, and the rules are how they may use your website.

The last thing you want is for your site to be abused by some shadier characters who prowl the World Wide Web. An Acceptable Use Policy can arm you with the power to claim against misuse.

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What is an Acceptable Use policy?

The Acceptable Use Policy sets out the rules which visitors must adhere to when using your website.

This comes with duties that range from stealing imagery and intellectual property to not posting harmful, illegal or discriminating content on your website.

An Acceptable Use Policy should list prohibited uses, content standards, and suspension and termination rules. At Law 365, we’ve created a list of key items in a Website Acceptable Use Policy template, which you can access by requesting the “key facts” below.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is an Acceptable Use Policy important?

A: As well as setting out the code of conduct for your website, an Acceptable Use Policy is a tool to reduce your liability for anything a website user does on your website. This is of vital importance if there are any interactive tools like comment sections, on-site reviews, chatrooms or places where users can upload their own content.

What if a user uploads harmful information, or information that offends another user, or content that infringes on the intellectual property of another? You do not want to be held liable.

Q: Is an Acceptable Use Policy legally binding?

A: There are two ways to present an Acceptable Use Policy on a website; Browse-Wrap and Click-wrap.

Browser wrap (the most common) is where you post the policy on the website; you might have a link to it on various pages, in your site footer, or reference it in the Website Terms and Conditions. Legally speaking, this method limits your liability for user content, but probably wouldn’t be legally binding on users. The reason being is that a user could simply say “I didn’t read that".

However, Click-Wrap, where visitors must click “accept”, would be a more efficient way of proving that users have given consent.

Q: What is included in an Acceptable Use Policy?

A:Request our “key facts” below for a detailed breakdown of what you should consider including in your Acceptable Use Policy.

In summary, An Acceptable Use Policy should list prohibited uses, content standards, and suspension and termination rules.

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Table of contents

View the contents of the Acceptable Use Policy

Sample table of contents

Key facts

Get the key facts for the Acceptable Use Policy

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Contact the Law 365 team about this policy

For these Microsoft Partners

  • Managed Services Provider
  • ISV, Software, Apps and IP
  • System Integrators Professional Services Consultancy Partners
  • Hosting Partners
  • Licensing Partners

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This is a 'Forever template'

We will continually update this template with the frequent Microsoft updates such as CSP and other flow down terms, plus we will update the relevant terms to ensure you can claim as many rebates as possible, and get recognised by Microsoft such as CPoR, (Claims Partner of Record) DPoR (Digital Partner of Record), and PAL (Partner Admin Link).

We will also continually update this template as the law changes, for example, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and the effects of Brexit on our laws, as we untangle ourselves from the European Union.