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Thread: [Content site] thisisby.us

  1. #1
    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    [Content site] thisisby.us

    Can anyone here tell me about thisisby.us? (Their motto: "Write for the world. Get paid.")

    Thanks --
    Last edited by HapiSofi; 08-13-2007 at 10:45 PM.
    Winner of the Best Drycleaner on the Block Award.

  2. #2
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    It seems to be an article site, much like Useless Knowledge. They have some kind of obscure scheme for dividing up the ad revenue they get from the google ads and blog ads and banner ads and other ads among the writers and commenters.

    Their FAQ doesn't answer some of the questions that I'd ask, like "Does accrued income roll over from month to month?"

  3. #3
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    I trust everyone can see the contradiction in these two adjacent sentences from their Terms and Conditions page.

    "You retain all copyright to all original user content you submit to the Site. By posting, uploading, or otherwise transmitted user content to the Site, you hereby grant us a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free, perpetual, and fully sublicensable and transferable right to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, translate, distribute, publish, create derivative works from and publicly display and perform such User Content in any media, now known or hereafter devised."

  4. #4
    I wouldn't really call it a contradiction. They are just taking all the rights granted by copyright as well. I'm sure they allow the author to reproduce, transfer and modify the work to their hearts content as well. (If the author can find someone willing to take a work that has already granted such rights to someone else.)


  5. #5
    Cat hair collector PVish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
    I trust everyone can see the contradiction in these two adjacent sentences from their Terms and Conditions page.

    "You retain all copyright to all original user content you submit to the Site. By posting, uploading, or otherwise transmitted user content to the Site, you hereby grant us a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free, perpetual, and fully sublicensable and transferable right to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, translate, distribute, publish, create derivative works from and publicly display and perform such User Content in any media, now known or hereafter devised."
    Some sites are even sleazier: On a site that allegedly encourages kids to write stories in the hopes of winning prizes, Associated Norcliffe Digital (AND) is grabbing all rights that it can:
    "By submitting any material to Toowrite Young Writers members are:
    --representing that they are the sole author of that entry and are fully entitled to enter their work; and
    --grant AND a non-exclusive, royalty-free, non-terminable licence to copy, modify, distribute, sub-licence, show in public and create derivative works from that material in any form, anywhere in the world; and
    --authorise AND to adapt the relevant material in the course of doing so, and so waive all of your moral rights including the right to be identified as the author of the material in question.

    Members also agree that AND may use entries on other websites owned or managed by AND, including www.ukplus.co.uk. Members agree that AND may also forward entries to regional newspapers for publication and on a royalty-free basis."
    However, the originator still retains copyright. Huh? Is this sort of rights grab in exchange for a gullible writer seeing his/her work online, supposedly making money, or supposedly winning a prize becoming a trend?

  6. #6
    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    Hi, guys. Sorry it's taken me so long to get back to this thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
    I trust everyone can see the contradiction in these two adjacent sentences from their Terms and Conditions page.

    "You retain all copyright to all original user content you submit to the Site. By posting, uploading, or otherwise transmitted user content to the Site, you hereby grant us a non-exclusive, irrevocable, royalty-free, perpetual, and fully sublicensable and transferable right to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, translate, distribute, publish, create derivative works from and publicly display and perform such User Content in any media, now known or hereafter devised."
    Woo.

    I went and read the whole thing. There's no reversion clause, they reserve the right to change the agreement at any time, and their contract is binding on anyone who uses the site in any way, which means they claim the same comprehensive set of rights for any comments that get posted there.

    You know, I'm really starting to feel that nothing screams "amateurs!" quite as loudly as a "we own everything, forever" rights grab combined with the complete absence of any provision for reverting rights in the event that the company either ceases to make the writing available to potential readers, or goes out of business.

    I notice that they allow writers to re-post articles, stories, weblog posts, etc., that they've already posted elsewhere -- as long as they hold the rights. Thisisby.us doesn't mention that that's the last time the writers will hold the rights to that material. They also allow writers to delete their material from Thisisby.us, but again, they don't mention that that won't get their rights back.

    I don't like their payment plan. They reserve the right to stop paying their writers:
    We further reserve the right to change or discontinue the payment of earnings at any time.
    Also, if you stop using your thisisby.us account, they stop paying you, even if they're still making money off your writing.

    Aside from all that, Thisisby.us looks like it's just another perpetual motion site: readers post all the content, readers judge and recommend the content, and the proprietors do nothing beyond writing a few checks every month. For this, they keep 50% of the take.

    Also, their system's susceptible to being gamed. If a group of passably decent writers there made it a policy to always recommend each other's articles, they'd collect a disproportionate share of the swag, and it would be hard to prove the voting was motivated by anything other than enthusiasm.
    Winner of the Best Drycleaner on the Block Award.

  7. #7
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    From cache:

    thisisby.us has discontinued operation as of February 1 2009.

    thisisby.us has thrived as a writing community since its launch in the Spring of 2006. We have seen over 50,000 posts by over 15,000 different writers, numerous (self-organized) meet-ups around the country, and dozens of features on some of the Internet's most popular websites.

    Sadly, thisisby.us could not be economically sustained. Though the site attracted a base of dedicated writers, the advertising market that caters to writers is neither large nor fast-growing; even given alternative business models, we could not afford the maintenance and labor required to sustain TIBU.

    If you have any remaining questions regarding your thisisby.us account, you can e-mail support@thisisby.us.

    Again, we cannot tell you how sad we are to announce this. We are extremely proud of the community we have built at thisisby.us. We hope that you will continue to practice the art of writing through other venues.
    All our best,
    bill and Elle Dee
    ICAO
    ---------
    Achievers strive for excellence. Perfectionists drive themselves to extinction. -- A Grapple A Day
    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. -- Charles DeSecondat

    II 2016: 2017:

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