Advantage ISP: Terms of Service as Media Law

TitleAdvantage ISP: Terms of Service as Media Law
Publication TypeJournal Article
AuthorsBraman, Sandra, and Stephanie Roberts
JournalNew Media & Society
AbstractAll users must access the internet through ISPs on the basis of contracts known as `terms of service' or `acceptable use policies' that are becoming de facto law for internet communications. This article examines contracts fr om over two dozen ISPs. Findings include a knowledge differ ential between users and ISPs regarding rules and their applications. User s have liability irrespective of intention, while ISPs do not. User s must license content to ISPs. And ISP agreements disregard constitutional standar ds regarding freedom of expr ession and privacy. Public forum analysis provides a legal foundation for seeking ter ms of service more protective of constitutionally-based civil liberties and intellectual property rights.
Short TitleAdvantage ISP