Terms of service

Welcome to Byzans!

These Terms govern your use of Byzans and the products, features, apps, services, technologies, and software we offer (the Byzans Products or Products).

1. Our services

Our mission is to give people the power to build community around our shared passion for books. To help advance this mission, we provide the Products and services described below to you:

Provide a personalized experience for you:

Your experience on Byzans is unlike anyone else’s: from the posts, chatrooms, comments, ads, and other content you see in your feed and other features you might use. We use the data we have – for example, about the books you read, want to read or have read, the choices and settings you select, and what you share and do on and off our Products – to personalize your experience.

Connect you with people and organizations you care about:

We help you find and connect with people, groups, businesses, organizations, and others that matter to you across the Byzans Products you use. We use the data we have to make suggestions for you and others – for example, books to read, events to attend, authors to follow or send a message to, and people you may want to become friends with. Stronger ties make for better communities, and we believe our services are most useful when people are connected to people, groups, and organizations they care about.

Empower you to express yourself and communicate about what matters to you:

There are many ways to express yourself on Byzans and to communicate with friends, family, and others about what matters to you – for example, sharing status updates, photos, videos, across the Byzans Products you use, sending messages to a friend or several people, creating events or groups, or adding content to your profile.

Help you discover content, products, and services that may interest you:

We show you ads, offers, and other sponsored content to help you discover content, products, and services that are offered by the many businesses and organizations that use Byzans and other Byzans Products. Our partners pay us to show their content to you, and we design our services so that the sponsored content you see is as relevant and useful to you as everything else you see on our Products.

Combat harmful conduct and protect and support our community:

People will only build community on Byzans if they feel safe. We employ  develop technical systems to detect misuse of our Products, harmful conduct towards others, and situations where we may be able to help support or protect our community. If we learn of content or conduct like this, we will take appropriate action – for example, offering help, removing content, disabling an account, or contacting law enforcement.

Enable global access to our services:

To operate our global service, we need to store and distribute content and data in our data centers and systems around the world, including outside your country of residence.

2. Our Data Policy

We collect and use your personal data in order to provide the services described above to you. You can learn about how we collect and use your data in our Data Policy.

3. Your Commitments to Byzans and Our Community

We provide these services to you and others to help advance our mission. In exchange, we need you to make the following commitments:

a. Who can use Byzans

When people stand behind their opinions and actions, our community is safer and more accountable. For that reason, you must:

  • Use the same name that you use in everyday life.
  • Provide accurate information about yourself.
  • Create only one account (your own) .
  • Not share your password, give access to your Byzans account to others, or transfer your account to anyone else (without our permission).

We try to make Byzans broadly available to everyone, but you cannot use Byzans if:

  • You are under 15 years old.
  • You are a convicted sex offender.
  • We previously disabled your account for violations of our terms or policies.
  • You are prohibited from receiving our products, services, or software under applicable laws.

b. What you can share and do on Byzans

We want people to use Byzans to express themselves and to share content that is important to them, but not at the expense of the safety and well-being of others or the integrity of our community. You therefore agree not to engage in the conduct described below (or to facilitate or support others in doing so):

  1. You may not use our Products to do or share anything:
    • That is unlawful, misleading, discriminatory or fraudulent
    • That violates these Terms and Community rules that apply to your use of Byzans.
    • That infringes or violates someone else’s rights.
    • That encourages suicide or self-injury
    • That encourages sexual exploitation
    • That constitutes bullying or harassment
    • That constitutes hate speech
    • That glorifies or celebrate violence
    • Spam
    • That breaches Intellectual Property
  2. You may not upload viruses or malicious code or do anything that could disable, overburden, or impair the proper working or appearance of our Products.
  3. You may not access or collect data from our Products using automated means (without our prior permission) or attempt to access data you do not have permission to access.

We can remove content you share in violation of these provisions and, if applicable, we may take action against your account. We may also disable your account if you repeatedly infringe other people’s intellectual property rights.

Where appropriate, we will take steps to notify you when we remove your content for violating our Community rules. We may not be able to provide notice in all cases, for example if we are prohibited from doing so by law or where it might harm our community or the integrity of our Products.

To help support our community, we encourage you to report content or conduct that you believe violates your rights (including intellectual property rights) or our terms and policies.

c. The permissions you give us

We need certain permissions from you to provide our services:

  1. The information about your book activity (the books that you want to read, are currently reading, want to read) and your comments in clubs are shared with the full Byzans community.
  2. Permission to use content you create and share: You own the content you create and share on Byzans and the other Byzans Products you use, and nothing in these Terms takes away the rights you have to your own content. You are free to share your content with anyone else, wherever you want. To provide our services, though, we need you to give us some legal permissions to use that content.

    Specifically, when you share, post, or upload content that is covered by intellectual property rights (like photos or videos) on or in connection with our Products, you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, and worldwide license to host, use, distribute, modify, run, copy, publicly perform or display, translate, and create derivative works of your content (consistent with your privacy and application settings). This license is only for the purpose of making our Products available to you. This means, for example, that if you share a photo on Byzans, you give us permission to store, copy, and share it with others (again, consistent with your settings) such as service providers that support our service or other Byzans Products you use.

    You can end this license any time by deleting your content or account. You should know that, for technical reasons, content you delete may persist for a limited period of time in backup copies (though it will not be visible to other users). In addition, content you delete may continue to appear if you have shared it with others and they have not deleted it.

  3. Use of your name, profile picture, and information about your actions with ads and sponsored content: Your name and profile picture and information about actions you have taken on Byzans can be used next to or in connection with ads, offers, and other sponsored content that we display across our Products, without any compensation to you. For example, we may show to other users that you are interested in an advertised event or have liked a Page created by a brand that has paid us to display its ads on Byzans. Ads like this can be seen only by people who have your permission to see the actions you’ve taken on Byzans.
  4. Permission to update software you use or download: If you download or use our software, you give us permission to download and install upgrades, updates, and additional features to improve, enhance, and further develop it.

d. Limits on using our intellectual property

If you use content covered by intellectual property rights that we have and make available in our Products (for example, images, designs, videos, or sounds we provide that you add to content you create or share on Byzans), we retain all rights to that content (but not yours). You can only use our copyrights or trademarks (or any similar marks) with our prior written permission. You must obtain our written permission (or permission under an open source license) to modify, create derivative works of, decompile, or otherwise attempt to extract source code from us.

4. Additional provisions

a. Updating our Terms

We work constantly to improve our services and develop new features to make our Products better for you and our community. As a result, we may need to update these Terms from time to time to accurately reflect our services and practices. We will only make changes if the provisions are not appropriate anymore or if they are incomplete, and only if the changes are reasonable for you in consideration to your interests. Unless otherwise required by law, we will notify you of the changes and the choices you have (for example, by email or through our Products) at least 30 days before we update the Terms and we will give you an opportunity to review them before they go into effect. Once any updated Terms are in effect, you will be bound by them if you continue to use our Products.

We hope that you will continue using our Products, but if you do not agree to our updated Terms and no longer want to be a part of the Byzans community, you can delete your account at any time.

b. Account suspension or termination

We want Byzans to be a place where people feel welcome and safe to express themselves and share their thoughts and ideas.

Our right to terminate for good cause remains unaffected. Good cause is specifically if a party violates obligations under these Terms, any laws, third party rights, or privacy policies, and the terminating party cannot be expected to continue the contractual relationship under consideration of all circumstances of the individual case and having weighed the interests of both parties up until the agreed time of termination or the expiry of a period of notice. A termination for good cause is possible only within a reasonable time frame after becoming aware of the violation.

If you delete or we disable your account, these Terms shall terminate as an agreement between you and us, but the following provisions will remain in place: 3, 4.b-4.e

c. Limits on liability

We are liable only as follows: We have unlimited liability in accordance with statutory provisions: arising out of injury damaging to life, limb or health; in case of intent; of gross negligence; and in accordance with the Product Liability Act.

Without limiting any of the above, we shall be liable for slight negligence only in the case of violation of an “essential” obligation under this agreement. “Essential” obligations in this sense are obligations necessary for the fulfillment of the agreement, the breach of which would jeopardize the purpose of the agreement in question, and which you can trust to be complied with. In these cases, liability is limited to typical and foreseeable damages; in other cases, there is no liability for slight negligence.

d. Disputes

If you are a consumer and habitually reside in a Member State of the European Union, the laws of that Member State will apply to any claim, cause of action, or dispute you have against us that arises out of or relates to these Terms or the Byzans Products (“claim”), and you may resolve your claim in any competent court in that Member State that has jurisdiction over the claim. In all other cases, you agree that the claim must be resolved in a competent court in the Federal Republic of Germany and that German law will govern these Terms and any claim, without regard to conflict of law provisions.

e. Other

  1. These Terms make up the entire agreement between you and Byzans regarding your use of our Products. They supersede any prior agreements.
  2. If any portion of these Terms are found to be unenforceable, the remaining portion will remain in full force and effect. If we fail to enforce any of these Terms, it will not be considered a waiver. Any amendment to or waiver of these Terms must be made in writing and signed by us.
  3. You will not transfer any of your rights or obligations under these Terms to anyone else without our consent.
  4. These Terms do not confer any third-party beneficiary rights. All of our rights and obligations under these Terms are freely assignable by us in connection with a merger, acquisition, or sale of assets, or by operation of law or otherwise.
  5. You should know that we may need to change the username for your account in certain circumstances (for example, if someone else claims the username and it appears unrelated to the name you use in everyday life).
  6. We always appreciate your feedback and other suggestions about our products and services. But you should know that we may use them without any restriction or obligation to compensate you, and we are under no obligation to keep them confidential.
  7. We reserve all rights not expressly granted to you.
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