Question by answerman: Commercially exploiting information?
“You are not permitted to reproduce, distribute, transmit, publish, or commercially exploit any information provided by The Referral Service without the appropriate permission of the copyright owner. This prohibition precludes emailing, faxing, posting to any bulletin board, storage in a database accessible to persons other than you, or otherwise making information available electronically or in any other form.”
Am I Commercially exploiting the information they have about their clients(contractors) who pay to use their service to get in contact with homeowner leads, so that I have a list of contractors to call and sell my same services to? or no. I know It can be frowned upon but thats no the question is that illegal?
Answer by bcnu
US Copyright law does not include “commercial exploitation” of the information. The information can be protected by contract (i.e., non-disclosure agreement), but the information itself is not copyrighted. Copyright only protects the “creative expression” of the information, such as the selection, format and order of a list, not the actual contents of a list.
The European Database Directive, however, protects information itself.
If you have agreed to the Terms of Service, you are (in theory) bound by its terms and can be sued for damages or receive an injunction to prevent violations (assuming they know about it and can find you and feel it’s worth going after and you don’t have any defense…)
What do you think? Answer below!