No sale of personal information
LibraryThing will not sell or give personally-identifiable information to any third party. This would be evil, and we are not evil. We reserve the right to sell or give away anonymous or aggregate information. (See LibraryThing for Libraries for a service we provide libraries.)
Email from LibraryThing
LibraryThing will not send you mass emails without your consent. By default, new members are signed up for our State of the Thing newsletter.
LibraryThing's "find friend" feature starts with no friends selected, and has no "select all" button.
LibraryThing allows "private" libraries—libraries that others can't see. We cannot give an absolute 100% guarantee of privacy. After all, even Amazon had a day when all their "anonymous" reviewers were exposed by mistake. If the public disclosure of your library would really damage you, by all means don't post it online.
We take reader privacy very seriously. LibraryThing will not cooperate with US law enforcement unless compelled to do so by law. If you are using LibraryThing from a foreign country with an oppressive government, LibraryThing urges you not to put yourself at risk.
LibraryThing allows members to connect to various apps, like Facebook and Twitter that require application authorization. We will not use this for anything other than explicitly agreed to. The data we collect from these apps is used only for authentication purposes, and is not displayed, transferred or shared in any way. LibraryThing will not sell or give personally-identifiable information to any third party. This would be evil, and we are not evil.
Most of our payments come through PayPal, so we never receive credit cards numbers. Remaining payment information is stored separately, and not linked to your member name.
LibraryThing is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of religion, race, color, national origin, ethnic origin, age, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy status, parental status, marital status, veteran status or any other classification protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.
Get off my lawn, you kids!
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) severely restricts what information can be collected from children under 13. For this reason, children under 13 are prohibited from using LibraryThing. Children 13 and over may participate with the permission and guidance of their parent or guardian. Users of all ages are warned not to provide profile information without weighing the risks and benefits, and never to provide their phone number, address or other critical personal data on-line.
By posting content to LibraryThing, you grant—and you represent and warrant that you have the right to grant, represent and warrant—LibraryThing a non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, omnipotent, royalty-free, fully-transferable and sublicenseable right to display, use, analyze, aggregate, modify, adapt, publish, translate, transform, create derivative works from and perform in any venue or media, online or offline, as well as
"In Painting, Sculpture, and rapt Poesy, / And arts, though unimagined, yet to be." (Shelley, Prometheus Unbound)
We do NOT assert copyright over the things you post to LibraryThing. The phrase "non-exclusive" above means you can post your content elsewhere. By posting something to LibraryThing you let us use it, but you do not restrict what you can do with it. We love it when people post their reviews on their blog, on Amazon and other sites!
As stated above, LibraryThing will not sell any personally-identifiable information to any third party.
You can control whether your reviews will ever be made available to libraries or others. Click here to edit your profile and change your preference.
Freedom of discussion and personal attacks
How to deal with abuse
Individual accounts are designed for personal collections. Couples and families are fine too. Organizations, like churches, companies, schools and museums, can also join, with some restrictions. (See organizational accounts.)
People who pay for lifetime memberships get what they paid for, and probably a lot more. If, however, LibraryThing adds major new features, including but not limited to tracking your borrowed books by satellite and punishing malefactors with a death-ray, using these new features may require an additional payment.
LibraryThing asks for $25 (life) or $10 (year) for over 200 books. If you go to pay, you will discover that you can pay what you want.
In adding a Member recommendation to any given work page, you are expected to make good-faith, disinterested recommendations. You can only make three recommendations per book, and cannot recommend the same book more than five times overall. Recommending your own book is strictly forbidden. Members can rate the validity of other member recommendations from the Rate Recommendations page. You are free to recommend books already listed by others or by LibraryThing itself.
We take it all back
These terms and conditions are subject to the usual change-at-any-time rule that websites put on their terms and conditions and which seem so unfair. ("What, I have to submit a DNA sample?") We have edited them as new situations have come up, but we promise not to change any of the core principles, particularly with regard to sale of information, copyright and death rays. We promise to make all changes openly, with tracking and with the opportunity for users to withdraw their accounts.
Credit where it's due
We proudly use some icons from these great icon sets:
LEXILE®, LEXILE FRAMEWORK® and the LEXILE® logo are trademarks of MetaMetrics, Inc., and are registered in the United States and abroad. Copyright © 2010 MetaMetrics, Inc. All rights reserved.
LittleFreeLibrary® and the LittleFreeLibrary.org® logo are trademarks of Little Free Library, Ltd., and are registered in the United States, as well as internationally. Copyright © Little Free Library, Ltd. 2010-2012.
BookCrossing™ and the BookCrossing™ logo are trademarks of BookCrossing, Inc. Copyright © BookCrossing, Inc. 2001-2013.
Certain content that appears in on this site comes from Amazon Services, LLC. This content is provided "as is" and is subject to change or removal at any time.
06/25/15. Added "topics" to Other Rules section on "pointless" groups.
8/12/14. Added equal opportunity employer statement.
5/1/14. Added suggestive images of minors bullet.
1/27/11. Major design changes to page. No textual changes.
5/27/10. Added plagiarism bullet.
12/15/08. Added "Disclaimers/Attributions" section.
3/25/08. Added "Review integrity" section.
10/31/08. Fixed a spelling error.
3/2/08. Fixed a spelling error.
2/29/08. Added italics, capital letters.
2/28/08. Clarified posting rules, which have been on and off this document and elsewhere on the site. Edited don't-dos to include impersonating someone else.
8/11/07. Reordered a bit; clarified that authors promoting their books is commercial.
7/12/07. Added prohibiton against duplicative or nonsense groups.
7/1/07. Added prohibition against reposting flagged content.
1/2/07. Added "Participating in Translation" link. Reordered items a bit.
12/17/06. Added "sock puppets" to "shell accounts." Edited some of the "don't be a jerk," for brevity not content.
12/11/06. Added "Participating in Talk and Groups." Removed "Intellectual Property and Reverse Engineering" clause.
9/11/06. Added part about use by booksellers to "Individual accounts".
8/21/06. Updated "Individual accounts" section to link to information about organizations.
4/3/06. Added section on "Automated Input and Retrieval," and second paragraph of "Individual accounts."
11/8/05. Added IP and reverse engineering clause.
11/8/05. Made it clearer that your username can't be an insult, general or specific, or use a term that suggests you run the website.
10/3/05. Added rule about empty libraries.