Terms and Conditions of
Beaufort Media GmbH
Represented by Managing Director Christoph Gaschler
For authors and copy-editors registered with 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. Authors 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 email 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 user’s acceptance of the general terms and conditions which are applicable at the time.
The user certifies that all information provided is truthful, current, accurate and complete. The user commits to keeping details current and up to date.
Upon successful registration, the user must submit a sample text. If accepted by the editorial team, the user must proceed to the second step of providing additional personal details. This will complete the registration process, allowing the user to begin working as an author for Independent Publishing.
In order to become a copy-editor, the user must edit a sample-text. If this edited text is approved by our editing team, the user can start working as a copy-editor for Independent Publishing. Independent Publishing can, however, subject this permission to become copy-editor to other conditions.
The user shall be solely responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of all login information. The user is not allowed to set up multiple accounts with differing personal details.
2.2 Formation of Contract
By creating an account, the user enters into a contract with Independent Publishing. When a user accepts a task from a client as either author or copy-editor, this user likewise enters into a contract with said client.
Independent Publishing reserves the right to exclude authors from the authors' community. Reasons upon which such a decision is made include but are not limited to: instances of copyright infringement or inadequate services rendered, among others. In the case of such an exclusion, the author receives a notification via email informing them of the situation. Their account and all associated data is deleted. Articles previously created by the author and already accepted by customers are refunded.
2.3 Obligations of Author
The author is required to submit texts within the time period specified by the client. The author must comply with the job description provided by the client.
Both author and client 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 client via the user interface of Independent Publishing. Said content must meet the following criteria:
- The specifications of the job description must be met.
- The text must be solely the work of the author and not contain any elements of other people's work. The use of text generators and translation tools is forbidden.
- The texts must not violate any third party rights as well as be free from third party protection rights. Independent Publishing will not be held liable for legal disputes or difficulties arising from incorrect or misleading content, or the infringement of trademark, property or other laws in texts created by the author.
2.4 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 client.
The copy-editor transfers drafted content to the client via the user interface of Independent Publishing. Said content must meet the following criteria:
- The specifications of the job description must be met
- The text is to be checked regarding spelling, grammar, punctuation, and typography
- The style (sentence length, articulation, appropriateness for target group) must be perfect
- The text is to be revised based on the value and logic of its content
- The default layout must be strictly maintained (headings, paragraphs, enumeration, etc.)
If the deadlines are not met, the editor must bear the corresponding consequences (see section 3.2).
2.5 General Obligations of the User
The user is not permitted to bypass the Independent Publishing system nor settle orders directly with clients. Any attempt to lure clients from Independent Publishing will, upon detection, lead to immediate exclusion from Independent Publishing and, where applicable, be punishable by law.
The user may use the internal messaging system exclusively for order processing. The sending of messages not corresponding to a specific task is forbidden. Clients have the ability to report abuse or other non-order related messages (e.g. spam). Independent Publishing will act immediately with regard to reported offences and, in cases where a violation has occurred, lock the account of the corresponding user.
The user is bound to maintain the confidentiality of Independent Publishing as well as that of the client in the face of third parties. In particular, the client’s identity and services rendered to the client must be kept confidential. This obligation persists even after the contract has been terminated.
Users who are paid via bank transfer are required to accurately submit the information for the account where payments are to be made. The user shall be responsible for any fees resulting from the submission of inaccurate information.
Authors and copy-editors as well as clients are bound by time limits.
3.1 Submission Time and Deadlines of Authors
The customer has the option of setting an individual processing deadline for the author once an 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 customer has the possibility to re-post the task as an Open Order or as a Direct Order.
The client has the opportunity to request one revision. Once the client 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 eligible to take on the re-posted task.
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 a maximum of one revision. 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 Client acceptance period
Once an author submits a text, the client has five working days to either accept it or submit a request for revision. The client has the option to reject the text, if it does not fulfill the requirements after the revision, but must then justify said rejection in writing to Independent Publishing.
The task is automatically deemed accepted if the deadline passes without any action from the client. The corresponding fee shall then be deducted from the project account of the client.
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 user 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. Content from Users
The user authorizes Independent Publishing to produce thumbnails (reduced-size images) of shared profile images for use in Independent Publishing.
6. Copyright and Usage Rights
Once the client has paid the text purchase price, the unrestricted and exclusive right to use the text is transferred from the author to the client. The client is free to decide how, when and in which medium to publish content purchased from Independent Publishing. The client is under no obligation to publish the text. Moreover, any use of purchased content is at the client's own discretion. Any amendment, use, copying, reproduction or public utilization of the text shall take place at the client's own discretion.
7. Revision and Rejection of Articles
The client 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 client 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 client 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 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 client can request one revision. If the text meets the requirements in the job description, the customer shall be obliged to accept the text. The rejection of a final text by the client must be justified to Independent Publishing in writing.
The client has the option to have this correction process carried out by the copy-editing department of Independent Publishing. In such cases, however, the client 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 client 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 client will be charged.
8. Quality control
The user accepts that submitted texts shall be subject to a process of quality control. Upon registering, the user must provide a writing sample which may be accepted or rejected by Independent Publishing. Submitted texts are also rated by the corresponding client.
Both client and user grant Independent Publishing the right to review job description information and client-author communication as well as submitted texts, in support of the quality control process. Moreover, text rejections by the client 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.
9. Compensation and Transfer of Payment
Authors and Copy-editors receive payment for texts accepted by a client. 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 client. As outlined in Section 7, the client rejection must be approved by Independent Publishing.
A project account is made available to the user upon successful registration with Independent Publishing. Credits for finished texts shall be issued to this account. Independent Publishing transfers payments on a biweekly basis. Bank transfers take place only for accounts which have a minimum balance of $10. A payment confirmation is simultaneously generated for the account upon transfer and is made available for download by the author.
The user’s project account balance bears no interest.
Independent Publishing reserves the right to postpone payments. In such cases, the user shall be notified in advance via e-mail. Compensation is subject to income tax. The user is responsible for the proper payment of taxes on compensation. The same applies to any (compulsory) contributions to social insurance.
Payments are settled via credit entry. Where required by law, said payments must include any tax which is legally applicable to Value Added Tax (VAT)-registered users, as outlined in the VAT Act (Umsatzsteuergesetz - UstG). To this end, the user shall provide a VAT number or tax identification number issued by the corresponding tax office to Beaufort Media GmbH, as well as company name and legal form. Furthermore, the author shall expressly confirm status as a VAT-registered entrepreneur (as opposed to small business status, as outlined in $19 of the UStG). The user is required to communicate any changes to said status immediately and without solicitation. Beaufort Media determines the payment method as either Paypal transfer or direct bank transfer, dependent on the user’s place of residence.
Only those accounts which feature the aforementioned tax information are eligible for payment inclusive of VAT. Beaufort Media GmbH is under no obligation to correct credits which have already been issued.
Compensation is not required if an accepted text violates copyright law. In such cases, any compensation issued to the author shall be repaid.
10. Contract Period and Termination
The account issued to the user 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 users who have not worked on any task during the previous twelve months.
Independent Publishing and the user 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 credits in the project account exceed the minimum payout balance, the user will be issued payment for the corresponding amount. Any balance lying below the minimum payout requirement at the time of termination shall be forfeited.
If an author or a copy-editor continually fails to perform as they are required to (see section 2), Independent Publishing has the right to permanently withdraw his or her access to its service.
11. Data back-up
Independent Publishing will conduct regular back-ups of data stored by users 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 user 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 users of changes beforehand via e-mail or a notice on the website. Terms shall be deemed adopted if a user does not object to changes within a period of two weeks.
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: 25th July 2012