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Terms of Use

Welcome to Voter’s Edge. These Terms of Use are a binding agreement between you and Voter’s Edge (“VE” - a project of MapLight, and in California a joint project of MapLight and the League of Women Voters California Education Fund for Voter’s Edge California) regarding the use of the website Votersedge.org and associated services (the “Site”). Please read these Terms of Use before using or submitting content in any form or medium on the Site.

By visiting or submitting content on the Site you agree to abide and be bound by these Terms of Use. VE reserves the right to change these Terms of Use at any time, and you agree to be bound by any such changes. Unless explicitly stated otherwise, any new features or functionalities (including, without limitation, video and related projects) that augment or enhance our site shall be subject to these Terms of Use.

Use of the Site API and Site widgets by candidates and by groups engaging in independent expenditures in support of or in opposition to candidates is prohibited.

Please review VE’s Privacy Policy in conjunction with these Terms of Use. If you do not agree to these Terms, please do not use the Site.

1) DESCRIPTION OF THE SITE

General Description. The Site is a project of MapLight, and in California, a joint project of MapLight and the League of Women Voters California Education Fund to provide voters objective, comprehensive nonpartisan information on elections, politics, and government. The Site is provided free-of-charge to voters as a public service. From time to time, VE will partner with other organizations that will serve as the source of some or all of VE’s content. We call the services available on the Site, whether accessed directly, or through the Mobile Software or such third party applications, the “Service(s).”

Right to modify site. VE reserves the right to immediately change, suspend, remove or discontinue any part of the site or any content (whether submitted by VE or by a user) for any reason, without prior notice or liability.

Changes to these terms of use. VE reserves the right to modify these Terms of Use at any time, and without prior notice, by posting amended terms to these policies. Once you have submitted an email address to our site, you authorize VE to communicate with you via email. VE will place unsubscribe links in emails sent from the Site. Please allow ten business days for unsubscribe requests to be processed through our list management systems.

2) USER CONDUCT

Conditions of use. As a condition of use, you agree to all of the following:

  • You acknowledge that the site is for personal use only. You agree that you will not use the site for commercial purposes.
  • You are responsible for all activity that occurs under your name, profile, or other online identities.
  • You are solely responsible for your conduct and any Content (defined below) that you submit, post, and display on the site, or that you allow others to submit, post and/or display on the site under your name, profile, or other online identities.
  • You may not harass, threaten, impersonate or intimidate other Site users.
  • You may not misrepresent your identity or affiliation with us or any other person or entity when using any function or service on the Site.
  • You may not upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available any content that is unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortious, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, invasive of another's privacy, hateful or racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable.
  • You may not upload, post, email, transmit or otherwise make available any unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, promotional materials, “junk mail,” “spam,” “chain letters,” “pyramid schemes,” “affiliate links” or any other form of solicitation, regardless of whether such material is commercial or non-commercial in nature.
  • You may not transmit any worms or viruses or any code of a destructive or disruptive nature.
  • You may not violate any local laws in your jurisdiction (including, but not limited to, intellectual property laws).
  • You may not use the site for any illegal or unauthorized purpose. If you are an international user, you agree to comply with all local laws in your jurisdiction regarding online conduct and acceptable content.
  • You may not access, “hack,” alter, or otherwise use any part of the site in any manner that you do not have access to or exceeds your authorized access.
  • You may not utilize any bugs, robots or other technological device to access or extract any data or information contained on the site or its servers.
  • You agree that you will not submit material that is copyrighted, protected by trade secret or otherwise subject to third party proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights, unless you are the owner of such rights or have permission from their rightful owner to post the material. By posting any material on the Site, you thereby grant VE a non-exclusive, perpetual, worldwide royalty-free right to publish, redistribute, or otherwise use such content in connection with the Site or any associated services.
  • You agree that you shall be solely responsible for your own content and the consequences of posting it.
  • VE reserves the right, in its sole and absolute discretion, to reject, refuse to post or remove any posting by you, or to restrict, suspend or terminate your access to all or any part of the Site at any time, for any or no reason, without prior notice or warning, and without liability.

3) SUSPENSION OR TERMINATION OF USE

We may discontinue or suspend the site or terminate your access to it. We reserve the right at any time and from time to time to modify or discontinue, temporarily or permanently, our Site (or any part thereof) with or without prior notice. You agree that VE shall not be liable to you or any third party for any such modification, suspension or discontinuance of the Site. In addition, we reserve the right to terminate your access to the Site for any reason, and to take any other actions that VE, in its sole discretion, believes to be in the interest of the project and of our users as a whole.

4) THIRD PARTY CONTENT

Some of the content on the Site is provided by third-party users or affiliates.

a. Notification. If any articles, blogs, comments, images or other content appear on the Site that are in violation of copyright laws, please follow the notification steps outlined below in our Copyright Policy in Section 6.

b. We are not responsible for and do not necessarily hold the opinions expressed by our content contributors: Opinions and other statements expressed by users and third parties (e.g. candidates, campaigns, bloggers, authors, etc.) are theirs alone, and are not the opinions of VE, its employees or its affiliates. Content created by third parties and its form, content, accuracy or truthfulness is the sole responsibility of its authors. VE is not able to fact-check or independently verify the accuracy or completeness of such third-party submissions, we do not undertake to monitor or edit words in any respect, and users are advised to use reasonable diligence before relying on any third-party material appearing on the Site. VE is not undertaking any obligation or liability relating to the content, and you are using the Service at your own risk. VE and its affiliates and employees assume no responsibility or liability which may arise from third-party content on the Site, including, but not limited to, claims for defamation, libel, slander, infringement, invasion of privacy and publicity rights, obscenity, pornography, profanity, fraud or misrepresentation, based on either direct, or contributory, vicarious or third party liability, or based on any other legal theory. Notwithstanding the foregoing, VE reserves the right to block or remove communications, postings or materials at any time at our sole discretion.

i. Candidate Provided Data. In addition to the foregoing, and without limitation, views expressed in candidate-provided data do not necessarily reflect any of the views or preferences, if any, of the League of Women Voters Education Fund, MapLight, or project partners. Neither the League of Women Voters of California Education Fund, MapLight, nor any project partners take any position on or express any preference about the issues or candidates displayed on this site. The League of Women Voters of California Education Fund, MapLight, and project partners neither support nor oppose candidates or political parties.

c. Sample ballot and polling location data. The information used to generate sample ballots and polling locations has been provided by either local election authorities, and, for statewide contests, by the Secretary of State's office, or by Google’s Civic Information API. Data is also mined from the Census database of the U. S. Government. Neither the League of Women Voters of California Education Fund nor MapLight are responsible for the accuracy of this data. The election official of your county remains the sole authoritative source for information regarding the content of ballot and polling place location. If you believe that either the polling place or ballot data is inaccurate, please report the problem to Voter’s Edge in the state where the problem is observed.

d. We are not responsible for linked sites. The Site contains links to various third-party websites that contain additional information related to elections and the political process. VE does not endorse, approve, certify, or control these external websites. VE does not exercise editorial control or oversight over the content featured by these third-party sites and makes no representation as to their accuracy, objectivity, fairness, completeness, efficacy, timeliness, or correct sequencing of information. Reference therein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not constitute or imply endorsement, recommendation or favoring by either the League of Women Voters Education Fund or MapLight. VE is not responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any material available on or through such websites.

e. Definition of intellectual property rights. When we refer to “Intellectual Property Rights” in these Terms, we mean all patent rights, copyright rights, moral rights, rights of publicity, trademark, trade dress and service mark rights (and associated goodwill), trade secret rights and all other intellectual property and proprietary rights as may now exist or hereafter come into existence, and all applications for any of these rights and registrations, renewals and extensions of any of these rights, in each case under the laws of any state, country, territory or other jurisdiction.

5) VE CONTENT

We Have and Retain All Rights in Our Site and Aggregated Content.

a. VE Content. Except for third party content, the Service itself, all content and other subject matter included on or within the Service, and all Intellectual Property Rights in or related to the Service or any such content or other subject matter (“VE Content”) are the property of VE and its licensors. Except as expressly provided in these Terms, you agree not to use, modify, reproduce, distribute, sell, license or otherwise exploit the VE Content without our permission.

b. VE’s license to you. Subject to the terms and conditions of these Terms, we grant you a license to use the Service, including accessing and viewing VE Content, for your personal, noncommercial use. VE may terminate this license at any time for any reason or no reason. Except for the rights and licenses expressly granted, VE reserves all other rights and no other rights are granted by implication or otherwise.

VE respects the Intellectual Property Rights of others and expects its users to do the same. It is VE’s policy, in appropriate circumstances and at its discretion, to disable and/or terminate access of users who repeatedly infringe or are repeatedly charged with infringing the copyrights or other Intellectual Property Rights of others.

In accordance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, the text of which may be found on the U.S. Copyright Office website at http://www.copyright.gov/legislation/dmca.pdf, VE will respond expeditiously to claims of copyright infringement committed using the Site that are reported to VE’s Designated Copyright Agent, identified below.

If you are a copyright owner, or are authorized to act on behalf of one, or authorized to act under any exclusive right under copyright, please report alleged copyright infringements taking place on or through the Site by completing the following DMCA Notice of Alleged Infringement and delivering it to VE’s Designated Copyright Agent. Upon receipt of the Notice as described below, VE will take whatever action, in its sole discretion, it deems appropriate, including removal of the challenged material from the Site.

Procedure for DMCA Notice of Alleged Infringement (“Notice”)

If you find you have a complaint under the DMCA, please comply with the following procedures in contacting VE.

(a) Identify the copyrighted work that you claim has been infringed, or, if multiple copyrighted works are covered by this Notice, you may provide a representative list of the copyrighted works that you claim have been infringed.

(b) Identify (i) the material that you claim is infringing (or to be the subject of infringing activity) and that is to be removed or access to which is to be disabled, and information reasonably sufficient to permit us to locate the material, including at a minimum, if applicable, the URL of the link shown on the Site where such material may be found, and (ii) the reference or link, to the material or activity that you claim to be infringing, that is to be removed or access to which is to be disabled, and information reasonably sufficient to permit us to locate that reference or link, including at a minimum, if applicable, the URL of the link shown on the Site where such reference or link may be found.

(c) Provide your mailing address, telephone number, and, if available, email address.

Include both of the following statements in the body of the Notice:

(i) “I hereby state that I have a good faith belief that the disputed use of the copyrighted material or reference or link to such material is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law (e.g., as a fair use).

(ii) “I hereby state that the information in this Notice is accurate and, under penalty of perjury, that I am the owner, or authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyright or of an exclusive right under the copyright that is allegedly infringed.”

Provide your full legal name and your electronic or physical signature.

Deliver this Notice, with all items completed, to VE’s Designated Copyright Agent:

VE Copyright Agent

Gagnier Margossian LLP

224 Townsend Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Email: gagnier@gamallp.com

What if I receive a copyright complaint (DMCA) notification?

If you receive a notification that your third party content has been removed due to a copyright complaint, it means that the content has been deleted from the Site at the request of the content’s owner. If VE believes or has reason to believe you may have violated the Intellectual Property Rights of a third party, it may restrict or prohibit you from making future submissions to the Site in its sole discretion.

If you believe your third party content was removed in error, you have the option to file a counter-notice by following the steps below. When VE receives a valid counter-notice, we will forward a copy to the person who filed the original complaint. If we do not receive notice within 10 business days that the submitter of the original complaint is seeking a court order to prevent further infringement of the content at issue, we will remove the complaint from your record, and we may replace the content that was removed.

Note: There are legal and financial consequences for fraudulent and/or bad faith submissions. Before submitting a counter-notice, be sure that you are the actual rights holder of the removed content or that you have a good faith belief that the material was removed in error, and understand the repercussions of submitting a false claim.

How to File a Counter-Notice.

(a) Reply to the notification you received.

(b) Include ALL of the following:

(i) Your name, address, and telephone number;

(ii) DMCA ID printed at the bottom of the notification email;

(iii) The source address of the content that was removed (copy and paste the link in the notification email);

(iv) A statement under penalty of perjury that you have a good faith belief that the content was removed in error;

(v) A statement that you consent to the jurisdiction of Federal District Court for the judicial district in which the address is located, or if your address is outside of the United States, for any judicial district in which VE may be found, and that you will accept service of process from the person who provided the original complaint under 17 U.S.C. § 512(c)(1)(C) or an agent of such person; and

(vi) A physical or electronic signature (for example, typing your full name).

7) TRADEMARK POLICY

VE respects the trademark rights of others. Accounts with usernames or any other content that misleads others or violates another’s trademark may be updated, transferred or permanently suspended.

VE Trademarks. The MapLight, Voter’s Edge (including all versions and variations), and the League of Women Voters of California Education Fund (LWVCEF) names and logos are registered trademarks and are the intellectual property of VE or their respective owners. You agree not to display or use this intellectual property in any manner without MapLight or the LWVCEFs prior, written consent. The names and logos of third parties may be their trademarks. You may not infringe on their Intellectual Property Rights. All rights are reserved.

If you are concerned that someone may be using your trademark in an infringing way on our site you can let us know by completing the form below. VE will review your submission and take whatever action, in its sole discretion, it deems appropriate, including temporary or permanent removal of the trademark from the VE site.

Trademark Infringement Claim Form.

(a) Identify the infringing username, the exact word or symbol that is trademarked and details regarding how the trademark is or was being infringed. Please also include the following:

(i) The trademark registration number; and (ii) The trademark registration office (e.g., USPTO).

(b) Provide your full name, email address (preferably a company email address), your relation to the trademark holder, your company name, your full mailing address and your phone number.

(c) Also helpful, but not mandatory, are the following:

(i) Link to the trademark record; (ii) Date of first use; (iii) Date of trademark application; and (iv) Date of Registration.

(d) Finally, tell us whether you:

(i) Want to claim the username at issue; (ii) Want to blacklist the username from further use; or (iii) Want VE to take other action.

(e) Include both of the following statements:

(i) “I hereby state that I have not authorized the challenged use, and I have a good-faith belief that the challenged use violates my rights.”

(ii) “I hereby state under penalty of perjury that all of the information in this notification is accurate and that I am the owner of the trademark, or authorized to act on behalf of the owner of the trademark.”

Send the above described notice to:

VE Trademark Agent

Gagnier Margossian LLP

224 Townsend Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Email: gagnier@gamallp.com

8) INDEMNIFICATION

You will be responsible for any harm we suffer as a result of your violation of these terms of use. You agree to indemnify and hold harmless VE and its affiliates and employees from and against all losses, expenses, damages and costs, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, resulting from any violation by you of these Terms of Use. We reserve the right to take over the exclusive defense of any claim for which we are entitled to indemnification under this Section 8. In such event, you shall provide us with such cooperation as is reasonably requested by us.

9) DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY

Your use of the site is subject to certain disclaimers. OUR SITE IS AVAILABLE “AS IS.” WE DO NOT WARRANT THAT OUR SITE WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED OR ERROR-FREE. THERE MAY BE DELAYS, OMISSIONS, INTERRUPTIONS AND INACCURACIES IN THE NEWS, INFORMATION OR OTHER MATERIALS AVAILABLE THROUGH OUR SITE. WE DO NOT MAKE ANY WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, THOSE OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, WITH RESPECT TO OUR SITE OR ANY INFORMATION OR GOODS THAT ARE AVAILABLE OR ADVERTISED OR SOLD THROUGH OUR SITE. WE DO NOT MAKE ANY REPRESENTATIONS, NOR DO WE ENDORSE THE ACCURACY, COMPLETENESS, TIMELINESS OR RELIABILITY OF ANY ADVICE, OPINION, STATEMENT OR OTHER MATERIAL OR DATABASE DISPLAYED, UPLOADED OR DISTRIBUTED ON THIS SITE OR AVAILABLE THROUGH LINKS ON OUR SITE. WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO CORRECT ANY ERRORS OR OMISSIONS ON OUR SITE. WE DO NOT GUARANTEE OR WARRANT THAT OUR SITE OR MATERIALS ARE FREE FROM ERRORS DEFECTS, OR FAILURES, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION VIRUSES, WORMS, “TROJAN HORSES” OR OTHER DESTRUCTIVE MATERIALS AND WE EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ANY LIABILITY FOR DAMAGE CAUSED BY SUCH ISSUES. IF YOU RELY ON OUR SITE AND ANY MATERIALS AVAILABLE THROUGH OUR SITE, YOU DO SO SOLELY AT YOUR OWN RISK.

OUR SITE MAY CONTAIN VARIOUS COMBINATIONS OF TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIOVISUAL PRODUCTIONS, OPINIONS, STATEMENTS, FACTS, ARTICLES, DATA OR OTHER INFORMATION CREATED BY US OR BY THIRD PARTIES. DUE TO THE NUMBER OF SOURCES FROM WHICH CONTENT ON OUR SITE IS OBTAINED, AND THE INHERENT HAZARDS OF ELECTRONIC DISTRIBUTION, THERE MAY BE DELAYS, OMISSIONS OR INACCURACIES IN SUCH CONTENT. ACCORDINGLY, SUCH CONTENT, INCLUDING DATA, IS FOR YOUR REFERENCE ONLY AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON BY YOU FOR ANY PURPOSE. IN ADDITION, WE STRONGLY URGE YOU TO BACK UP ALL OF THE PERSONAL CONTENT THAT YOU MAINTAIN ON THE SITE.

10) DISCLAIMER OF CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES

IN NO EVENT SHALL VE, ITS SUPPLIERS OR ANY THIRD PARTIES MENTIONED ON VE BE LIABLE FOR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, PUNITIVE AND STATUTORY DAMAGES, LOST PROFITS OR DAMAGES RESULTING FROM LOST DATA OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) RESULTING FROM THE USE OR INABILITY TO USE VE AND VE CONTENT, WHETHER BASED ON WARRANTY, CONTRACT, TORT OR ANY OTHER LEGAL THEORY, AND WHETHER OR NOT VE IS ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

11) VE LIABILITY FOR USER CONTENT AND INTERACTIONS THROUGHOUT THE WEBSITE

VE may take any action with respect to third party content that it deems necessary or appropriate in its sole discretion if it believes that such third party content could create liability for VE, damage VE’s brand or public image or cause VE to lose (in whole or in part) the services of its ISPs or other suppliers.

While VE reserves the right in its sole discretion to remove third party content and other material from VE from time to time, VE does not assume any obligation to do so and disclaims any liability for failing to take any such action.

VE is not involved in the actual communications between VE users. As a result, VE has no control over the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of any content submitted by users on VE and makes no representations about any such content on VE.

In addition, you should note that there are risks – including, but not limited to, the risk of physical harm – when dealing with strangers, foreign nationals and/or underage persons or people acting under false pretenses. You assume all risks associated with dealing with other users with whom users come in contact through VE. By its very nature, other people's information may be offensive, harmful or inaccurate, and, in some cases, will be mislabeled or deceptively labeled.

We expect that you will use caution and common sense when using VE. Because user authentication on the Internet is difficult, VE cannot and does not confirm that each user is who they claim to be. As third party websites are used in features on this site, refer to the policies to these third party websites referenced in Section 5(c) of this Terms of Use.

If you are a California resident, you agree to waive California Civil Code Section 1542, which says: “A general release does not extend to claims which the creditor does not know or suspect to exist in his or her favor at the time of executing the release, which if known by him or her must have materially affected his or her settlement with the debtor.” In other words, understand that VE will be relieved of all liability arising from unknown or unsuspected claims. Because we do not and cannot be involved in user-to-user dealings or control the behavior of participants on VE, in the event that you have a dispute with one or more users, you release VE (and our agents and employees) from claims, demands and damages (actual and consequential and direct and indirect) of every kind and nature, known and unknown, suspected and unsuspected, disclosed and undisclosed, arising out of or in any way connected with such disputes.

VE may contain inaccuracies or typographical errors. VE makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of any VE content. The use of all VE content is at your own risk. Changes are periodically made to VE and may be made at any time. You acknowledge and agree that you are solely responsible for the form, content and accuracy of any resume or material contained therein placed by you on VE.

VE cannot guarantee and does not promise any specific results from use of VE. No advice or information, whether oral or written, obtained by a user from VE shall create any warranty not expressly stated herein.

12) LIMITATION OF LIABILITY

VE’S MAXIMUM LIABILITY ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH VE OR YOUR USE OF VE CONTENT, REGARDLESS OF THE CAUSE OF ACTION (WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT, BREACH OF WARRANTY OR OTHERWISE), WILL NOT EXCEED $100.

VE and its affiliates and employees are not liable for incidental, indirect, consequential, special, punitive or exemplary damages of any kind, including, without limitation, lost revenues or profits, loss of business or loss of data, in any way related to this site or for any claim, loss or injury based on errors, omissions, interruptions or other inaccuracies in our site (including, without limitation, as a result of breach of any warranty or other term of these Terms of Use).

13) PRIVACY POLICY

VE takes the privacy of its members very seriously. Our Privacy Policy is available here. By accepting the Terms of Use, you agree to be bound by our Privacy Policy.

14) MISCELLANEOUS

These Terms of Use, and any rights and licenses granted hereunder, may not be transferred or assigned by you, but may be assigned by VE without restriction. Any attempt to assign or transfer these Terms of Use and any rights and licenses will be null and void.

Entire Agreement. The Terms of Use, including VE’s Privacy Policy, which are hereby incorporated by reference, constitute the entire agreement between you and VE and governs your use of the site, superseding any contemporaneous or prior agreements between you and VE.

Governing Laws. The Terms of Use will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of California, without regard to its conflict of law provisions.

Waiver and Severability. The failure of VE to exercise or enforce any right or provision of the Terms of Use shall not constitute a waiver of such right or provision. If any provision of this Agreement is invalid, illegal or unenforceable under applicable law, it shall not affect the validity or enforceability of the remainder of the terms of this Agreement, and without further action by the parties to this Agreement, such provision shall be reformed to the minimum extent necessary to make such provision valid and enforceable.

Notices. VE may provide you with notices, including, without limitation, those regarding changes to the Terms of Use and other site-related announcements, by postings on the site (for example, by posting to the blog, or on the relevant page(s) of the site affected by such changes) or via email.

Limitation on claims. Any action concerning the site must be brought within one year after the reason for the action arises, or the claim is barred.

VE may be legally compelled to disclose certain information. You agree that in the event VE receives a subpoena issued by a court or from a law enforcement or government agency, VE may have to comply with such subpoenas without your consent or prior notice to you and may need to disclose your IP address, name, IP location or other information in response thereto.

Contact Information. Please send any questions, comments or report any Terms of Use violations to california@votersedge.org, illinois@votersedge.org, or newyork@votersedge.org.

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