Terms and Conditions
Beaufort Media GmbH
Represented by Managing Directors Christoph Gaschler and Marc-Michael Braun
For customers of the Independent Publishing internet service.
Independent Publishing is a platform that brings together authors and clients. Our authors write texts on topics submitted by our clients and are paid on a per-word basis. Our clients receive custom texts written according to their specifications from authors via the Independent Publishing platform. The customer has the possibility to choose from two different types of orders; Open Orders or Direct Orders. Open Orders are made available to all Independent Publishing authors, while Direct Orders can be targeted at a specific group of authors chosen by the customer. Acceptance of a submitted text entitles the client to its exclusive use. The client has the additional possibility, either via Open Order or Direct Order, to have the texts edited by the editorial department at Independent Publishing. The client has no obligation to publish an accepted text. The author is not entitled to publish texts that he or she has written.
Supplies, services, offers and agreements between Independent Publishing and the user shall be based exclusively on these general terms and conditions. Customers who do not wish to be bound by these general terms and conditions may not use Independent Publishing.
Independent Publishing reserves the right to alter these terms and conditions in the future. In such cases, Independent Publishing will notify authors of changes beforehand via e-mail or website notice. Amendments to terms and conditions will be considered accepted if the author does not object within a period of four weeks.
2. Service Use
2.1 Registration with Independent Publishing
The user must register prior to using services provided by Independent Publishing. This process requires completion of the online registration form at www.independent-publishing.com. Registration constitutes the customer's acceptance of the general terms and conditions which are applicable at the time.
The customer certifies that all information provided is truthful, current, accurate and complete. The customer commits to keeping details current and up to date and to not make it accessible to any third persons. A customer may not demand access to Independent Publishing services.
2.2 Formation of Contract
By creating an account, the customer enters into contract with Independent Publishing. When a user accepts a task from a customer as either author or copy-editor, this user likewise enters into contract with said customer.
2.3 Obligations of Customer
The customer is required to formulate their requirements as clearly as possible and as detailed as necessary. The requirement must contain the following information:
- the title, topic and the required content,
- the number of words,
- the level of quality,
- the keyword, including the keyword density,
- the processing time.
The customer may not violate rights of third persons through their requirements. Moreover, the requirements may not contain any content which would be libellous, defamatory, pornographic, would promote violence or be in any other way illegal. Also, it must not request any such content. Should the customer breach this requirement, Independent Publishing has the right to delete the tasks in questions and block the customer.
2.4 Obligations of Author
The author is required to submit texts within the time period specified by the customer. The author must comply with the requirements (job description) provided by the customer. Both author and customer are bound by contract to the time limits specified in the terms and conditions. The delinquent party will bear an appropriate penalty if the given deadline is not met (see section 3). The author transfers drafted content to the customer via the user interface of Independent Publishing. Independent Publishing does not guarantee correctness or the usability of the content of the submitted texts.
2.5 Obligations of Copy-editor
The copy-editor is required to submit texts within 24 hours of the time the task is accepted. The copy-editor must comply with the job description provided by the customer. The copy-editor transfers drafted content to the customer via the user interface of Independent Publishing. The copy-editors are bound by formation of contract to the set deadlines. If the deadlines are not met, the editor must bear the corresponding consequences (see section 3.2). Independent Publishing does not guarantee correctness or the usability of the content of the submitted texts.
2.6 General Obligations of the Customer
The customer may use the internal messaging system exclusively for order processing. The sending of messages not corresponding to a specific task is forbidden. Customers have the ability to report abuse or other non-order related messages (e.g. spam). Independent Publishing will act immediately with regard to reported offenses and, in cases where a violation has occurred, lock the account of the corresponding customer.
The customer is not permitted to bypass the Independent Publishing system nor settle orders directly with authors or copy-editors. Any attempt to lure authors or copy-editors from Independent Publishing will, upon detection, lead to immediate exclusion from Independent Publishing.
Authors and copy-editors as well as customers are bound by time limits. Independent Publishing does not guarantee observance of deadlines by the authors or copy-editors.
3.1 Submission Time and Deadlines of Authors
The customer has the option of setting an individual processing deadline for the author once a order has been created. This deadline spans between one and five days and begins once the author agrees to undertake the order. The customer has one opportunity to request a revision. Once the customer has made a revision request, the author must revise the text within one day (24 hours).
Lack of compliance with the deadline will result in withdrawal of the author from, as well as the re-posting of, the task. All authors will then be able to accept on the re-posted task.
Lack of compliance with the deadline will result in withdrawal of the author from, as well as the sending back of the task to the customer. Afterwards, the client has the possibility to re-post the task as an Open order or as a Direct Order.
3.2 Submission Time and Deadlines of Copy-Editors
Once the copy-editor takes on a task title, the task becomes visible in the author section and can then be taken on by the potential author. After the task is written, it is submitted by the author to the copy-editor. As soon as the text is received, the copy-editor has a limited time of 24 hours to revise the text based on the required standards (see section 2).
The copy-editor has the possibility to request one revisions. Once the copy-editor requests a revision, the author has one day (24 hours) to revise the text. If the author is asked to revise, the deadline for the copy-editor is suspended. A new 24-hour deadline is then activated once the copy-editor receives the revised version. Lack of compliance with the deadline will result in withdrawal of the copy-editor from the task.
3.3 Customer acceptance period
Once an author submits a text, the customer has five working days to either accept it or submit a request for revision. The customer has the option to reject the text following a revision, but must then justify said rejection in writing to Independent Publishing.
If the customer has ordered the task with the copy-editing option, he or she has a minimum of three and a maximum of five days to accept or reject the text.
The job is automatically deemed accepted if the deadline passes without any action from the customer. The corresponding fee shall then be deducted from the project account of the customer.
3.4 Deadline and Time Period Calculation
Saturdays and Sundays are not included in time period calculations.
4. Forbidden Content
During the course of the use of the Independent Publishing, the customer may not:
Save, publish or transfer data, text, images or other content which is, in the opinion of Independent Publishing, unlawful, harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, hateful or discriminatory.
Save, publish or transmit data, text, images or any other content which violates third party rights, particularly patents, trademarks, copyright or ancillary copyright law, trade secrets, privacy rights or property rights.
5. Copyright and Usage Rights
Once the customer has accepted the text and paid the text purchase price, the unrestricted and exclusive right to use the text is transferred from the author to the customer. The customer is free to decide how, when and in which medium to publish content purchased from Independent Publishing. The customer is under no obligation to publish the text. Moreover, any use of purchased content is at the customer's own discretion. Any amendment, use, copying, reproduction or public utilization of the text shall take place at the customer's own discretion.
6. Revision and Rejection of Articles
The customer has the right to request one revision from the author via the Independent Publishing user interface. Any requests for revision shall be formulated with as much precision as possible so as to allow the author to improve the text to the satisfaction of the customer. The author may also make inquiries to the customer via the internal messaging system.
The author shall be required to revise the text if the requested points of revision coincide with the job description and the author has not yet addressed them in the text, or if the submitted text contains errors which the customer assumes should have been avoided without any specific job guidelines.
Once the article has been received for revision, the author has one day (24 hours) to make corrections and re-submit the text to the customer. If the author does not meet the deadline, the job will automatically be withdrawn from the author, placed in the task pool and made available to all authors.
Once the article has been received for revision, the author has one day (24 hours) to make corrections and re-submit the text to the client. If the author does not meet the deadline, the job will automatically be withdrawn from the author. In case of Open Order it will be placed in the task pool and made available to all authors. In case of Direct Order, the customer has the possibility to place the job as an Open Order or as a Direct Order.
The customer has the option to have the revision process carried out by the copy-editing department of Independent Publishing. In such cases, however, the customer maintains the right to ultimately either accept or reject the article.
In cases of rejected texts, Independent Publishing will reach a decision which is binding for all parties. Taken into consideration are the job description, revision requests, communication between customer and author, communication between copy-editor and author, and the work of both the copy-editor and author. If the rejection is deemed incomprehensible or to have insufficient grounds, Independent Publishing reserves the right to dismiss the rejection. In such a case, the author and copy-editor will be paid and the customer will be charged.
7. Quality control
Every task submitted by an author is rated by the corresponding customer or copy-editor. This serves quality control and guarantees that only the best authors write for Independent Publishing. Both customer and user grant Independent Publishing the right to review job description information and customer-author, customer-copy-editor and author-copy-editor communication as well as submitted texts, in support of the quality control process. Moreover, text rejections by the customer shall also be subject to review. Independent Publishing shall randomly check the quality of submitted texts in an effort to ensure consistently high-quality work. Independent Publishing is not liable for the content, scope or results derived from these checks.
8. Compensation and Transfer of Payment
Authors and Copy-editors receive payment for texts accepted by a customer. Compensation is calculated on a per-word basis. Any additional work that exceeds the maximum word count is not compensated.
Authors and copy-editors have no right to compensation if the conditions outlined in Section 6 are found to be violated or if the text is ultimately rejected by the customer. As outlined in Section 7, the customer rejection must be approved by Independent Publishing.
A project account is made available to the customer upon successful registration with Independent Publishing. Before the customer orders a text, they must first ensure that they have enough credits in their account. Independent Publishing may define a minimum amount which can be paid into the account.
Once a customer has ordered a text, the expected value of said text, defined by the number of words and the price level* as well as editing services, should these be needed, and an administrative fee, shall be frozen in the customer's project account. After the text has been accepted, the amount shall be deducted from the customer's account. Should the customer withdraw the job, the frozen amount will be released and can be used to order new jobs.
The customer pays all the incurred taxes and fees. The credits on the account bear no interest rate. The customer may at any time request that the free credit be paid out to him.
* Direct Orders are subject to the highest price per-word
9. Contract Period and Termination
The account issued to the customer on the Independent Publishing platform is of indefinite duration. The account, however, can be terminated with 14 days' prior notice sent by email, fax or letter. Independent Publishing has the right to deactivate the accounts of customers who have not ordered any jobs during the previous twelve months.
Independent Publishing and the customer reserve the right to extraordinary termination of the contract. Serious violations of these terms and conditions, in particular the duties outlined in Section 2, shall warrant the termination of all contracts without notice and the deactivation of the user's account. If there are credits in the project account, the customer will be issued payment for the corresponding amount.
10. Offset, retention
The right of retention on the side of the customer is excluded unless the customer's counter claim comes from the same contractual relationship is undisputed or established by force of law. An offset at the side of the customer is also only possible with undisputed demands or demands established by force of law.
11. Data back-up
Independent Publishing will conduct regular back-ups of data stored by the customer in their accounts. Independent Publishing will attempt to retrieve any lost data as quickly as possible but shall not be liable for said loss.
12. Data protection
The privacy statement is available here.
Independent Publishing guarantees neither to the customer nor to any other persons that the service will meet their needs at all times or be available in an uninterrupted, timely, secure or flawless manner. Independent Publishing makes no guarantee in relation to results that can be achieved via use of the service, or in relation to the accuracy and reliability of information that shall be available within the scope of the service.
Independent Publishing likewise does not guarantee that the hardware or software used as part of the service will function flawlessly or that possible hardware or software errors will be corrected, and assumes no liability for damages that may arise from the use or inability to use Independent Publishing, including damages for data loss or corruption.
Independent Publishing also accepts no liability for the conduct of users or other third parties, or for content created or statements made by users or other third parties within the scope of the service.
14. Liability and Limitation of Liability
The liability of Independent Publishing is restricted to damages resulting from injury to life, limb, or health, insofar as these do not arise from an intentional or grossly negligent breach of duty on the part of Independent Publishing, or from an intentional or grossly negligent breach of duty on the part of a legal representative or agent of Independent Publishing.
Our liability is limited for other damages caused in the course of using our service insofar as these do not arise from an intentional or grossly negligent breach of duty on the part of Independent Publishing, or from an intentional or grossly negligent breach of duty on the part of a legal representative or agent of Independent Publishing.
Independent Publishing assumes no responsibility for damages caused by technical failures, other technical deficiencies or force majeure. In particular, Independent Publishing shall assume no responsibility for the accuracy of data or texts made available by third parties, or for the constant availability of Independent Publishing and its on-demand services.
Independent Publishing shall not be held liable for delays or defects resulting from unclear, incorrect or incomplete order issuance or transmissions, or from faulty data feeds.
Independent Publishing assumes no responsibility for the response to content submitted by the user for publication and shall not guarantee that its publication is suitable for any particular purpose.
Independent Publishing reserves the right to make future amendments to these terms and conditions. In such cases, Independent Publishing shall notify customer of changes beforehand via email or a notice on the website. Terms shall be deemed adopted if a customer does not object to changes within a period of one week.
16. Applicable law, place of performance and jurisdiction
The laws of the Federal Republic of Germany apply. Place of performance and exclusive jurisdiction is Hamburg, to the extent permitted by law. No oral side agreements exist in connection with this contract. Amendments to these terms and conditions shall be made in writing. The repeal or amendment of this written form clause shall likewise be made in writing. Should individual provisions be partially or completely invalid, the remainder of the contract shall remain valid.
Effective date: 24th September 2012