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David Brian said:
To be fair, Oily, as they themselves stated, they have 30 days to comply to requests. Nothing much can happen before then.
They're saying they will only anonymize the account, not delete the information:
David Brian said:
Actually, no.
I've been lurking throughout this thread, my thoughts leaning toward those copyright protections set down by Shane. I was interested to see how long it would take someone from your end to step-up, and hopefully dispel some worries.
I have to say your opening lines were a doozy... and not in a good way.

Anyhow, perhaps your company has a representative who actually understands the implications of GDPR, because it seems you do not.

Firstly, with regards your sneaked in TOS: Consent under GDPR must be active, requiring affirmative action by the data subject, rather than the passive acceptance under some current models that allow for pre-ticked boxes or opt-outs.
Controllers (that's you) must keep a record of how and when an individual gave their consent, and that individual may withdraw their consent whenever they want. Your current model for obtaining consent must be in place for when the GDPR applies in 2018.

Secondly, any citizen can withdraw consent whenever they like. They might do so because they object to how an organisation is processing their information, or simply because they don't want it collected anymore. In this instance all data will be removed.
The controller (again, that's you) is responsible for telling other organisations (for instance, Facebook, Google, PhishingScams.com, etc) to delete all and any links to copies of that data, as well as the copies themselves.

Thirdly, it may be worth mentioning for those covered by GDPR, if you wish to transfer any of the data you have posted here, and use it elsewhere; the controllers (Vertical Scope) are required to assist you - and to assist you swiftly: the legislation means citizens can expect to have a request honored within four weeks. Controllers must ensure the requested data is in an open, common format such as CSV, meaning that when it moves to another provider it can still be read.

Helena, I hope this helps to clarify your obligations under GDPR. It is a worldwide regulation, affecting all companies holding data on EU residents/citizens.
 

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David VanDyke said:
It's utterly fair to hold "management" responsible, collectively, for the train wreck we are all watching--the owners, the mods, and anyone else involved in running KBoards.

Note that holding them responsible is not the same as saying who's at fault, in the same way the President (whomever it is) is responsible for running the country, but not necessarily at fault for the actions of any individual member of their administration.
I'm unsure what you want the mods to do, or what you think they have the power to do. I'm also confused by your analogy.

The President holds the power. According to you, the President is responsible for what the people under him do (even though he may not be at fault). I agree with this.

But the moderators don't hold the power. According to your analogy, the moderators are responsible for what the people who hold the power do (even though they may not be at fault).

That's not how it works.

If you read the thread, you'll see that the power of the moderators is already being stripped away.

At any rate, the very last thing I want to do is get sidetracked from the real issue. And I'd really hate to see us pull a Lord of the Flies-type scenario and start attacking our own.
 

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I don't know about all of you guys, but I'm fascinated with Vertiscope's apparent business model. It's shady and mysterious. It's international. It involves piles and piles of money. I think this is exactly the type of story that something like NPR's planet money or Freakanomics would love to explore. This whole fiasco touches on all kinds of hot topics like privacy, cyber security, GDPR, copyright laws, information manipulation and the state of public discourse. Nearly everyone has some nostalgia for the quirky little forums that used to be ubiquitous before Facebook and Reddit came along, and they might like a story about the little underdog communities pushing back. 

You would think a community of writers would be able to convince a major outlet that this is a story that's got legs.
 

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I admit, I'm confused.

I'm just a prawnie author. Could somebody describe for me the worst-case scenario of what this company can do to me because of my posting here? I don't really understand what it is I'm supposed to be worried about. They might re-post my posts somewhere? They might sell my email address? Is that it?
 

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I'm new to this board, and I've been so impressed with the real community feeling here and the skilled moderators. You don't get a strong community like this without very good moderation. Just wanted to voice my appreciation.
 

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loraininflorida said:
I admit, I'm confused.

I'm just a prawnie author. Could somebody describe for me the worst-case scenario of what this company can do to me because of my posting here? I don't really understand what it is I'm supposed to be worried about. They might re-post my posts somewhere? They might sell my email address? Is that it?
I'm a bit like you, but not so prawny, and have been online for a long time. I don't really see what they can do with the info other than target ads at me, and loads of people are already doing that so see if I care, because I really don't.

That said...

Not notifying us of the changes in TOS is NOT COOL.
Not replying to concerns was NOT COOL.
Helena's "response" was DEFINITELY NOT COOL.

And it's getting to the point where I'm like IDGAF about my stuff here. It's mostly banter and eh. It would have been really nice to have been notified, but I get it, big company, different priorities yada yada.

But to let someone as unprofessional as that loose in an already charged environment and insult all of us?

I don't have to put up with that BS on top of all the other BS.

I have loved the KB because of the community. I might just log out for the first time since 2011, close the tab and go somewhere else. We don't have to put up with people who don't respect us. I've been invited into a lot of cool FB groups today.

What a pity that Facebook appears to have temporarily and goofily removed the ability for almost everyone in Australia and New Zealand to see comments. Gah. Maybe I should go and write.
 

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vsAdmin said:
WE DO NOT OWN... nor want... the copyright to your material. We do however own the RIGHTS to your posted content (images, text any raw posted information)
You have ZERO rights to any book covers displayed here. Book covers are a special case, and they involve rights assigned by artists to authors, licenses and rights involving the owners of specific images on the cover, and often publisher contracts.

You have NO RIGHT to anything to do with book covers, and never will.

vsAdmin said:
OK have them contact our lawyers.
Word to the wise. That attitude in here will just make things worse. And apparently has.

And before you think it will be joe bloggs local lawyer calling, if it comes down to it, authors will be contacting the really big author associations who have lawyers on staff to deal with anything author related. If enough of us complain to them, you'll be dealing with lawyers who deal with author issues all day every day. And they will be telling yours all about the law regarding author rights.

And as it happens, it might actually be an idea for those who can explain this situation coherently to start contacting the associations for advice. I think we need a heavy hitter in here. Both for cover rights, other author related rights, and the whole EU legislation thing.
 

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Based on this thread, it seems the fight is not going to end any time soon. My purge has begun in earnest and I reitterate my refusal to accept all claims foisted on users by this new TOS. See you all in the void.
 

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I wasn't worried about the TOS changes. They seemed unnecessarily broad, but struck me more as the kind of stupid thing some idiot's barely competent cousin in the legal department thought up as opposed to something actively malicious. So I wasn't going to stress over it.

But that was before I read Helena's completely unprofessional response. And then I did a search for "VerticalScope problems." Seems this company has a habit of taking over boards, driving them into the ground, and taking a giant crap on the members. I found several forums with "Open Letter to VerticalScope" posts complaining about increases in spam, ignoring technical issues, and lack of communication.

Congratulations, VS. You just saw a minor grease fire and went, "Y'know what this fire needs? A few gallons of gasoline."
 

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Bards and Sages (Julie) said:
Because this thread is 20 pages, I've highlighted the problematic parts of the TOS and created a timeline of events in the event members are put in a position where we need to file formal complaints in order to get our content removed. I've always found having dates available to be very helpful with these things.

https://bardsandsages.com/juliedawson/2018/09/19/verticalscopes-overreaching-tos/
Thank you Julie. I was trying to figure out what happened, and have been crawling through all the pages of thread. This is what happens when you work on the weekend, and have to catch up mid week.

I have just two words.

THIS SUCKS!
 

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This thread & the 'community outreach' person's posts in it are crazy. It's really scary that anyone can buy all of our data & info & be this crazy about it. I keep thinking it's got to be one of the following explanations:

1. It's Amazon who bought the forum to silence negativity against it.

2. The VerticalScope people are intentionally stirring drama & chaos to make KBoards more active & get more clicks & attention.

3. It's one of the banned KU scammers who bought the forum so they could keep scamming, while also getting all the deets on their enemies so they can exact revenge.

😮🤔🤨😮😯

I don't know about ya'all but at this point, any of these consipracy theories make about as much sense to me as anything else I can come up w/ to explain why an admin would post such things. Yikesies!
 

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Okay. I have more to say now. I've been on this thread since 2009. I have advertised. I have started a new pen name and advised for almost 10 years on how to self publish. Tonight, it's as if I'm seeing an era disappear. Corporate takeover, data mining. I'm on the verge of tears. Because I know the people on this board know exactly what is going on. They didn't buy an ignorant lot of people and data.

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

People on this board are too smart not to see what is going on.

I'm just flabbergasted right now.  :eek:

I'm sure Harvey is rolling in his grave. And yes. I remember Harvey, his posts, and I'm sure his family didn't realize what they may have been doing, or that this would happen. Or maybe they did. Who knows.

All I can say is that most likely, this is the death of this board people. I am so upset right now.

And most likely, it's time to start moving the community somewhere else.

UNLESS, something happens like real administrators doing something like talking to us.

But over the last few weeks, I haven't seen that. I've only seen the mods I know trying to do the lip service these new owners have told them. And the owners aren't even instructing them well.

All I know is that the friends and people I respect for the last decade, people I trust, are not trolling. They are not freaking out. They are sounding a true alarm that is going to maybe get lawyers involved. So, I'm going to take their advice.

I don't agree to the new TOS. I have years of personal data and posts that I don't agree to be used under any new TOS.
Using this forum now is to just try to straighten out what is going on until I can figure my next steps. What that may be might be determined in the way this administration decides to handle this situation.

I'm going to miss Kboards. Dang, I even remember when Harvey announced he had to change the name from Kindleboards.com to Kboards.com. I am like near tears here. I've run promotions, worked on projects, made so many friends here. This board jump started my career into Romance writing.

I am going to miss this community.

The only thing that would save it is somebody coming on the board from the new ownership and making an effort to solve this problem.
This thread is of legitimate issues and needs to be properly addressed.

Just so sad right now.
First Createspace and AMS and KDP all joining together and messing up my life.
Now this.
It's like the world is out to destroy the Indie Publishing Movement and try to drag us into corporate slavery.

*Sorry* But my emotions are really running high tonight.

:-[

 

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Crayola said:
I requested my old posts and post starters be deleted, but I wanted to keep my profile. It's easier for me than making a new profile. Now I can lurk and sometimes comment with the new TOS in mind. The mods weren't sure it would work, but it did!

Something peeps may want to consider.

I'm glad you kept your avatar. I would have missed it. ;-)
 

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I'm sad as well. The writing's on the wall and despite everything this place has given me, I can't stay. The new reality here is feeling very dystopian, or even diabolical.

I'll be lurking from now on and tidying up loose ends. And I guess I'll go check out Tim's forum. I'd say there's a wake for Kboards going on over there right now...

Hugs to all. Thanks, mods.
 

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TiffanyTurner said:
I remember Harvey, his posts, and I'm sure his family didn't realize what they may have been doing, or that this would happen. Or maybe they did. Who knows.
I know.

I want to stop this line of thought now. I know that the Chute family thought this was the best for KB going forward--and that they felt there was a commitment that KB's culture would not be changed. I don't know if Carrie is aware of the discussion in this thread--I hope not--but I know without a shadow of a doubt that this would be heartbreaking for her and Harvey's daughters. Please stop this line of speculation, it helps no one.

Betsy
KB Moderator and member since 2008. Member no. 72
 

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vsAdmin said:
Hello All,

Helena here :) I am the director of Community Management here at VS and have been with the company for 8 years. I am and have been for over 15 years a forum user. I am an active user on 3 forums and in my youth was active on over 10.

Why I am telling you this, well because I want you to understand that I am a forum user as well as an employee of verticalscope.

I have read through all I can on here and have to say that it seems like there is more trolling going on in this thread than actual relevant debate. When My team posts to you instead of talking to the points some people resort to troll tactics and just wish to confuse everyone and take away from the topic.

SO .... Let's have a real conversation about this.

I chose to quote Shane Lochlann Black because he has posted the most accurate to what the law is.

The TOS is broad yes, correct, but as you all know people are sue happy so we cover our bases.

WE DO NOT OWN... nor want... the copyright to your material. We do however own the RIGHTS to your posted content (images, text any raw posted information) Now there is a big difference between copyright and rights.

Copyright means we are liable for your content. So if you wrote a biography essay about Kim Kardashian and posted it on here and in said article used defamatory information she could sue us. Since we would own the copyright to that content. I will take it one step further, if you posted child pornography and we owned the copyright, we would be charged. (sorry I know that is extream but highlights the point).

Owning the rights to your content on the forum means we own the right to have your content here and to use that content on the site. Why do we do this and need to say this well, me quoting Shane Lochlann Black, for example, if the site did not own the rights, he could come after me as a user and sue me for copying his content. Or if we posted your thread on the home page, or in a newsletter, we need the rights to do that.

It means that you gave the site permission to post on it. - now we don't technically need a TOS, since the internet is an open forum and when you post on the internet you automatically give that place the rights to that content. Larger companies needs more protection then that. This is a privatly owned forum, so by signing up and posting you gave that right to the old owner without a TOS, If that wasnt the case, we couldnt buy sites.

Now there are many a legitimate question in here. I would like to answer all of them. So if we can stick to legitimate questions and concerns and try to keep them in a singular place or post. so that means if the question was asked please don't ask again.

I read that users (authors) are upset about I think google ad works showing up to guests, I can have it turned off in the author's section.

Look we will make mistakes, something you don't like will happen, but I assure you we will fix it and work with you all. But the post blasting, and trolling is not the right way to go about it.

The sky isn't falling and we are not the devel. We won't reply real time to a post or a PM, because we can't be online every second. But we will try to answer you when we can.

Now if you still want clarification about the TOS I can have my legal team answer some questions, so work together and put them into a single post that is easy to work with and I can make that happen.

If there is someone who feels cheated about the site being sold PM us ask for Helena and gives us your email address and I will email you back.

Before you think the sky is falling take a breather. We are not here to steal your content and sell it for profit if we did that we would not be very successful and people would not be inclined to sell to us.

I hope this helps, and I hope we can have a better conversation about this. I appreciate you all reading this.

Side note, I am a read-a-holic and am trying to read a book a week this year. I have been snooping around for books I may want to read :D ... ok off topic I know

Helena
Okay, I finally found this post. My main thought was, maybe she should hang out on our board a little before belittling everyone here.
COCKYGATE ended up in court. It was international news. And there were people on this board involved in it.
That's just one thing to mention that maybe people thought was a whole bunch of romance writers having a spat, but really had huge reprocussions throughout the web and news media.

Things that get out of hand on this board get REAL very fast and seriously. Treating everyone on her like children is NOT going to fly.

So, I'd say, the new owners are scoring a 2 so far on a scale of 1-10. If they want any new content or users to sell their precious ads to, they better get on the ball better than this kind of message. Worst customer service I've ever seen.
 

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Betsy the Quilter said:
I know.

I want to stop this line of thought now. I know that the Chute family thought this was the best for KB going forward--and that they felt there was a commitment that KB's culture would not be changed. I don't know if Carrie is aware of the discussion in this thread--I hope not--but I know without a shadow of a doubt that this would be heartbreaking for her and Harvey's daughters. Please stop this line of speculation, it helps no one.

Betsy
KB Moderator and member since 2008. Member no. 72
Betsy,
This entire thread is heartbreaking to me. I'm sure it is upsetting to anybody that has been on this board for as long as we have.
I won't mention anything along those lines again. But I have to acknowledge my own grief for what I am seeing unravel before my eyes tonight.

And what has been done to you is unfair. People on this board are not stupid. Many of us understand how boards work, can write them, code them, and calling us "trolls" was not a way to try to communicate well. I'm sure the moderators were left in charge because you know the community. But this is getting to the point that I can see many of the writers on the board leaving, just like what happened to the erotica writers when Ad Words came into play on the board.

So, this is most likely another evolution of the board. But I don't know if I see it surviving this time. Though, I hope it does. Too many good points have been brought up.
 

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As I posted before, there is a Modification for the forum to be GDPR compliant. All they need to do is install the free version, or the very cheap pro version. It will be on my forum shortly.
 
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