Author Topic: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately? (MERGED)  (Read 84297 times)  

Online Blocked Writer

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Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
« Reply #675 on: September 20, 2018, 10:42:49 am »
This thread was 31 pages two days ago and I'm sure there have been another 31 pages since then. hehehe! It's kinda weird.

I knew it!  :D That's why I made a note of the number of pages earlier. I thought it had already been longer.

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    Offline Just Another Vampire Writer

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #676 on: September 20, 2018, 10:52:47 am »
    What a mess.

    I was a moderator on another popular forum years ago (it wasn't writing related), and I watched it die a prolonged and miserable death after the owner there sold. Like the former owners of Kboards, I don't think they sold it to who they did maliciously, and once it was out of the original owner's hands, there was nothing to be done about it. They had their reasons for needing out, and I get that. I hold no ill-will to the former owners, the problem has arisen from VS's tactics. I hate to see this happening here, but the signs are all too familiar.

    This is certainly the forum I frequent the most, and it's sad. I learned a lot here. I went from a rookie who made all the typical mistakes-no editing, crappy covers, etc.-to someone who now sells because of what I learned here over the years. I'm not deleting my posts at this time, I've hardly posted enough to even justify doing so over the last 7 years, but man, what a bummer this all is. I hope this ship rights itself, but I'm gonna hang out near the lifeboats for now.

    Oh, fun note, though I've deleted nothing, my post count has dropped by several hundred this week. I was at 675 and as of this I'm at 115? Interesting.
    « Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 10:55:58 am by Just Another Vampire Writer »

    Offline AltMe

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #677 on: September 20, 2018, 10:56:14 am »
    In a thread titled "Trial Moderator is now on duty," someone whose title is "Forum Owner" says "I've appointed a first moderator ... If a thread deteriorates when I'm not here, the Mod is instructed to lock the thread until I'm back."
    That strikes me as quite authoritarian.  Is there a "we" in there anywhere?

    Blocked Writer, if you have a problem with me, do what everyone else is doing and talk to me. I don't bite.

    What you just quoted is for tonight. It's 3.40am for me, and the new moderator and I have not had a chance to actually talk about how to go about it. We have moderating guidelines in place, but until I need to do more than boot out the odd spammer, while I'm asleep, if anything comes up, I want it frozen until I'm up tomorrow morning to deal with it. I actually dont expect anything, as everyone has been brilliant today. But there is too much activity at the moment to leave it completely unattended. I was offered experienced help, and I took it. Tomorrow is a different and new day.

    Most of what else your saying is a case of already sailed. Had we been able to form a co-op and buy here as such, what you keep saying would be possible. But we never got the chance, and unless VR sells the forum in the future, and gives people left here the chance, it isn't going to happen.

    I started a Facebook group to discuss how to set up a new forum. I was quite happy for anyone else to do it. No-one went in that direction. I know how to set up a forum, having done it 8 times already. I could do it, I had the site it could be done on, I had the time to devote to it, and so I did it. So I'm not a committee, but I'm talking to everyone about what they want. A little authoritarianism is going to happen, as the last word is always mine, given its my site, my time, and my money going into it. The latter is not an issue. But the combination means the last word is always mine, especially since its me implementing it. As it was Harvey's here, back in the day.


    I'm not sure what your problem is, but I know my new forum wont be for everyone. Nothing ever is. Its not even an issue. You can choose to go where ever you like. Like everyone else. But you are welcome to talk to me about any concerns you might have. Or not. But not now.


    I'm choosing to go to bed.

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    I do not consent to the new TOS, and do not give my consent by posting and maintaining my membership here.

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    Offline Used To Be BH

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #678 on: September 20, 2018, 11:04:48 am »
    For those of you wondering about legal remedies, EU citizens are not the only ones protected, particularly in the event of a change in terms of service with no notice. Rights and remedies may vary, but here are some examples relative to the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (serving California, Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, Alaska, Arizona, Nevada, Montana, Idaho).

    Quote
    It may seem obvious to any first-year law student that one party to a contract can't change the terms of that contract without notifying the other. But the Ninth Circuit in Douglas v. US District Court ex rel Talk America, No. 06-75424 (9th Cir. July 18, 2007), had to remind the district court of this basic principle. In Douglas, Talk America had posted revised contract terms on its website, which included a mandatory arbitration clause for its customers. When Douglas, a Talk America customer, filed a class action lawsuit against the company, the company moved to compel arbitration based on the revised contract, and the district court granted the motion. Douglas petitioned the Ninth Circuit for mandamus. In granting the petition, the Ninth Circuit held that "[p]arties to a contract have no obligation to check the terms on a periodic basis to learn whether they have been changed by the other side." The district court's decision, according to the Ninth Circuit, "reflect[ed] fundamental misapplications of contract law."
    (emphasis mine) The case did not address the issue of whether a company can build in a responsibility to check terms periodically into an agreement, but
    Quote
    The Ninth Circuit in Douglas noted how cumbersome such a requirement would be, forcing customers to "check the contract every day for possible changes" and "compare every word of the posted contract with [the] existing contract in order to detect whether it had changed."
    http://pubcit.typepad.com/clpblog/2007/07/courts-says-aol.html

    Quote
    Basically, this logic creates two-tiered system of online contract making. In the first instance, a clickwrap agreement (clicking OK or I agree) is used to bind the user. But, in the second instance, after a modification to the first agreement, a browsewrap agreement (continued use=assent/agreement to the new terms) is used to bind the user. The Court, thankfully, doesnt look too kindly upon this new contractual arrangement, arguing that it creates the expectation for consumers to spend time inspecting a contract they have no reason to believe has been changed and that the imposition of such an onerous requirement on consumers would be particularly lopsided.

    The Court [in Rodman v Safeway, Inc.] put the situation pretty simply: The safeway.com agreement did not give Safeway the power to bind its customers to unknown future contract terms, because consumers cannot assent to terms that do not yet exist. A user confronting a contract in which she purports to agree to terms in whatever form they may appear in the future cannot know to what she is are agreeing.
    https://medium.com/@jlkoepke/we-can-change-these-terms-at-anytime-the-detritus-of-terms-of-service-agreements-712409e2d0f1

    Those two cases, taken together, make it clear that a company cannot bind customers to a new or amended TOS without their consent, and the second case makes clear that browsewrap agreement is not enough.


    I have not consented to the new Terms of Service, which were implemented without any announcement and without the ability to accept or reject them. My continued participation on the forum is related only to addressing this issue and cannot be construed as implied consent.  9/19/2018

    Offline Evenstar

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #679 on: September 20, 2018, 11:23:19 am »

    Offline LL2018

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #680 on: September 20, 2018, 11:29:09 am »
    Deleted.
    « Last Edit: September 25, 2018, 08:25:09 am by LL2018 »
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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #681 on: September 20, 2018, 11:37:39 am »
    Discussion of any other forum and it's rules and policies should take place THERE . . . not here. Further such posts will be removed.

    Thanks for understanding.



    Also: if posts are being removed, know that it is not Betsy, Becca, or I doing the removing -- except infrequently in the case of violations of the existing Forum Decorum
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    Offline Marston

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #682 on: September 20, 2018, 11:45:09 am »
    So what exactly is your point, Bill?

    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=billhiatt.com

    See what I did there? That's just a generic TOS Verticalscope uses for every single one of the thousand message boards they own. They put absolutely no effort into it, the script is written so that they can auto-generate a TOS for any website they purchase just by inserting a domain name at the end of the URL.

    Once they buy a forum, they slap that generic TOS on the bottom. This forum still has the exact same registration agreement that it has always had. The real TOS that members actually agree to has not changed, as far as I can tell. The one you see at the bottom of the forum, that none of us have agreed to, is not enforceable, it's just a link to another website. People have been saying this from the start.

    The real issue is that this forum went from a family operated website to one owned by a corporation that doesn't care about the members and is just looking to make money selling advertisements. If you're uncomfortable with that, find an alternate forum. The previous owner "sold out." I don't blame her for it, but it is what it is.

    Offline 99896

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #683 on: September 20, 2018, 11:53:19 am »
    The old man told me to take any rug in the house.
    « Last Edit: September 22, 2018, 03:28:33 pm by thedudeminds »

    Offline Monique

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #684 on: September 20, 2018, 12:05:25 pm »
    Insert "stay on target" gif here.

    Too lazy to look for it and don't want VS to think it's suddenly theirs. :)

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #685 on: September 20, 2018, 12:09:16 pm »
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=verticalscopesucks.com
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=verticalscopeisclueless.com
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=thisisfunny.com



    That's...bizarre...and hysterical. And probably explains why this company has had two major security breaches if their TOS is so easily screwed with.

    Offline DanielGibbs

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #686 on: September 20, 2018, 12:10:58 pm »
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=verticalscopesucks.com
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=verticalscopeisclueless.com
    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=thisisfunny.com



    That's...bizarre...and hysterical. And probably explains why this company has had two major security breaches if their TOS is so easily screwed with.

    I laughed so hard at that I almost sprayed my coffee out of my mouth. Bravo. :)
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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #687 on: September 20, 2018, 12:12:36 pm »

    Offline Becca Mills

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #688 on: September 20, 2018, 12:14:17 pm »
    A number of posts back, Tobias wondered if there might be ways to move toward the positive. I won't hazard a general answer on that one. I do think some things are just plain old bad, and all you can do is endure the badness of them. Maybe a silver lining emerges later, maybe it doesn't. That said, I have taken one action today that's made me feel a little better and figured I'd share it.

    As Tiffany Turner noted,

    They bought the very chronicles of the rise of self publishing in the ebook/digital age.

    Well, the Wayback Machine crawled and saved www.kboards.com "369 times between March 25, 2002 and August 28, 2018." It saved www.kindleboards.com (our earlier incarnation) "964 times between June 12, 2008 and September 13, 2018." Each of those saves created a discrete, publicly accessible representation of the site as it was on that date, one anyone can view for free. I don't think it's too much to say these saves form a record of the rise of self-publishing, along with Konrath's blog, Passive Voice, and a few other early sites. It's certainly not everything -- plenty of major indie authors never posted here -- but it's a lot.

    I've stopped my monthly donation to KBoards, as I doubt VerticalScope needs financial help the way the Chutes did, and have set up a monthly donation to Wayback instead. I'm not sure what the future holds for KBoards, but I'm going to do my part to make sure our past is preserved, because indie publishing is wonderful and amazing, and if anyone in the future is interested in how it played out, I want our stories to be there.

    Please note this is not a solicitation for donations for Wayback, but rather a personal narrative of an action that's brightened my outlook. I hope you each find your own ways to feel better.

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    Offline munboy

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #689 on: September 20, 2018, 12:15:00 pm »


    You beat me to it! lol That was the exact one I was going to use, too.

    But, yeah...I'd love to see VS tell Disney to have their lawyers contact theirs.  ;D

    Offline Susanne O

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #690 on: September 20, 2018, 12:16:27 pm »
    So no DNA checks, blood donation, drop 'em and cough? Good to know, So authors can remain anonymous?

    If you want, you can be invisible too. And the private part is not visible to the naked eye.

    Offline Curious Author

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #691 on: September 20, 2018, 12:38:49 pm »
    Just want to add my 2c and get in my thanks to the mods, Betsy, Ann and Becca (and also Evenstar). I was a forum moderator for a while (and paid, not even volunteer!), so I know what it's like to be on the other end of things.

    I've enjoyed my time here (under a different name) and will miss the community. I have benefited so much from all of the assistance and advice and am sad to see another good platform fade away. Kboards and Kindleboards have helped launch and boost many an indie author career, including mine, and I am deeply saddened to think of all the "institutional memory" and expertise that will be lost as people leave and go elsewhere.

    Hopefully, another platform will arise, and maybe our mods will find a new home there, too. Best wishes to each and every one of you, mods and authors, in your various career paths.

    Offline Used To Be BH

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #692 on: September 20, 2018, 12:39:30 pm »
    So what exactly is your point, Bill?

    https://www.verticalscope.com/aboutus/tos.php?site=billhiatt.com

    See what I did there? That's just a generic TOS Verticalscope uses for every single one of the thousand message boards they own. They put absolutely no effort into it, the script is written so that they can auto-generate a TOS for any website they purchase just by inserting a domain name at the end of the URL.

    Once they buy a forum, they slap that generic TOS on the bottom. This forum still has the exact same registration agreement that it has always had. The real TOS that members actually agree to has not changed, as far as I can tell. The one you see at the bottom of the forum, that none of us have agreed to, is not enforceable, it's just a link to another website. People have been saying this from the start.

    The real issue is that this forum went from a family operated website to one owned by a corporation that doesn't care about the members and is just looking to make money selling advertisements. If you're uncomfortable with that, find an alternate forum. The previous owner "sold out." I don't blame her for it, but it is what it is.
    My posts was directed to people who wish to leave in the event that VS refuses to allow them to delete their accounts. Basically, a lot of courts have rejected the idea that a company can change the TOS and bind previous members to it without their consent. That gives people grounds to ask for deletion if they do not wish to continue under the current TOS.

    The discrepancy between the registration agreement and  the VS generic TOS has already been noted--but so what? All that means is that someone forgot to update the registration form. I don't see why that should increase any of our confidence levels. As far as the new TOS, yes, I'm pretty much sure it is unenforceable--but I don't want to spend thousands of dollars to fight that battle, and I doubt anyone else does, either. People and sometimes even large companies, sometimes sue because they have deeper pockets.

    I'd love to find an alternate forum, but, like many others, I'm not going to leave my intellectual property lying around here to be used at VS's discretion under the terms of the new TOS. The fact that it's more extensive than what companies typically ask for has already been documented. So that, to answer your original question, is exactly my point: that there are legal remedies available if VS tries to force people to keep their posts up. I'm hoping it won't come to that, of course, but one should be prepared for the worst-case scenario.
    I have not consented to the new Terms of Service, which were implemented without any announcement and without the ability to accept or reject them. My continued participation on the forum is related only to addressing this issue and cannot be construed as implied consent.  9/19/2018

    Offline Rick Gualtieri

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #693 on: September 20, 2018, 12:41:23 pm »
    I've been through this - twice. I sold my own company, and I was concerned about my customers continuing to get the integrity of the service claimed. I built certain assurances into the sale documents to give me grounds to sue if they didn't meet certain criteria, and I joined the new company that bought me. In that case, it actually worked out - I became the control of the new larger company, got promoted, became a Director. It went well.

    I've been there several times before: Small to medium sized company, independently owned ... then a corporation, sometimes a holding company, swoops in and buys it.  And the first words out of their mouths are always the same, "Don't worry, nothing is going to change" aka one of the biggest lies in corporate America.

    Not surprising at this point in my life, but always sad because you know it's only a matter of time before the heart and soul of the original company is completely cut out.


    Making fantasy fun again, one corpse at a time
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    Offline TiffanyTurner

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #694 on: September 20, 2018, 12:57:17 pm »
    A little music to lighten the mood.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47E2tfK5QAg



    Thanks. I needed a good laugh. At least we're keeping the humor until the very end. Working on a blog post right now. ;-)
    I do not consent to the new TOS, and do not give my consent by posting and maintaining my membership here.
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    Offline writerlygal

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #695 on: September 20, 2018, 12:59:06 pm »
    Yeah, this is just a business transaction & a fact of life. Look, ya'all, no one care about us little people & a community. It's all about money. This is true w/ Amazon & true about Kboards or pretty much any internet forum that needs money to run, to defend against lawsuits, to have moderators, that can have advertisements, etc.

    I have always said that Amazon, like politicians as someone mentioned a few pages back, pits us little people against each other & makes vendors fight w/ each other so we don't unify & demand fair treatment & better terms. Companies that own message boards do the same thing. Or maybe they don't have to do it - they just let us loose & we do all the work ourselves. But that doesn't fix anything & it doesn't change the fact that the Internet is a for profit venture.

    Thanks to the mods for all your hard unpaid work. My condolences to the Chute family. I'm sure you did what you thought was necessary & best after trying times on many fronts.

    Offline 69959

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #696 on: September 20, 2018, 01:19:06 pm »
    https://bardsandsages.com/juliedawson/2018/09/19/verticalscopes-overreaching-tos/

    3rd time posting this now, but I can understand how it gets lost in all the chaos.

    I shared this post on G+ and now my G+ account is under suspension. Not saying that's why, but it's also the only thing I've posted in some time. Not saying I particularly care, either, but I do find it interesting. Won't stop me from sharing.

    Offline MarilynVix

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #697 on: September 20, 2018, 01:39:47 pm »
    Blocked Writer, if you have a problem with me, do what everyone else is doing and talk to me. I don't bite.

    What you just quoted is for tonight. It's 3.40am for me, and the new moderator and I have not had a chance to actually talk about how to go about it. We have moderating guidelines in place, but until I need to do more than boot out the odd spammer, while I'm asleep, if anything comes up, I want it frozen until I'm up tomorrow morning to deal with it. I actually dont expect anything, as everyone has been brilliant today. But there is too much activity at the moment to leave it completely unattended. I was offered experienced help, and I took it. Tomorrow is a different and new day.

    Most of what else your saying is a case of already sailed. Had we been able to form a co-op and buy here as such, what you keep saying would be possible. But we never got the chance, and unless VR sells the forum in the future, and gives people left here the chance, it isn't going to happen.

    I started a Facebook group to discuss how to set up a new forum. I was quite happy for anyone else to do it. No-one went in that direction. I know how to set up a forum, having done it 8 times already. I could do it, I had the site it could be done on, I had the time to devote to it, and so I did it. So I'm not a committee, but I'm talking to everyone about what they want. A little authoritarianism is going to happen, as the last word is always mine, given its my site, my time, and my money going into it. The latter is not an issue. But the combination means the last word is always mine, especially since its me implementing it. As it was Harvey's here, back in the day.


    I'm not sure what your problem is, but I know my new forum wont be for everyone. Nothing ever is. Its not even an issue. You can choose to go where ever you like. Like everyone else. But you are welcome to talk to me about any concerns you might have. Or not. But not now.


    I'm choosing to go to bed.



    Dude, you are awesome. If we have a place to go, that is the important part. We'll build the rest. It will take time.
    If you build it, they will come. ;-)

    I've been catching up and blogging about recent events all morning.
    Here is my blog post about the last few days. Might help others catch up too.
    https://marilynvix.com/2018/09/20/the-death-of-kboards-com-my-indie-publishing-home-implodes/
    « Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 01:41:36 pm by MarilynVix »

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    I do not agree to the terms of the new TOS and my usage of my current account is for maintenance esp. since accounts are not being deleted anymore. I maintain I still own copyrights to the posts, covers and my pen name used on this board. VerticalScope cannot use my copyrighted material or sell to third party without my permission. Dated: 9/20/18

    Offline lyndabelle

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #698 on: September 20, 2018, 03:38:40 pm »
    Looks what happens when I go away for a few days.

    This is why we can't have nice things.

    Made the big migration. Will check back from time to time. But my promos/deals threads will be moving there.

    Adios everyone! Going to miss you all.

    I will be only maintaining this account. New posts will be on the new forum.

    Thanks for the good times everyone.  8)



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    I do not consent to the new TOS, and do not give my consent by posting and maintaining my membership here. Date: 9-20-18

    Offline Marti talbott

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    Re: Has any one noticed the terms of service for KB lately?
    « Reply #699 on: September 20, 2018, 04:00:41 pm »
    Discussion of any other forum and it's rules and policies should take place THERE . . . not here. Further such posts will be removed.

    Thanks for understanding.

    So Ann, usually when I post the thread dies. Want me to try it?



    Also: if posts are being removed, know that it is not Betsy, Becca, or I doing the removing -- except infrequently in the case of violations of the existing Forum Decorum
    Based on an actual event: The 1909 Dotsero Train Wreck https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B084H4Z23C/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p6_i5

    Author of over 50 novels   www.martitalbott.com

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