Nearly every day, some sort of terms-of-service agreement is popping up on my computer—for software, a plug-in, an app, or to register for a website.
For me, the routing is always the same: Scroll to the bottom, do whatever I have to do to denote my agreement, and hope for the best. There was even a recent episode of South Park mocking the casualness with which we treat these contracts. I won't spoil the episode for you, but you might want to actually read what you're agreeing to when you next update iTunes.
More seriously, the popular image-hosting-service Twitpic recently came under fire for its terms of service, which seem to allow the celebrity-photo group WENN to license photos uploaded to Twitpic for commercial purposes—without asking permission and/or providing compensation to the photographers. WENN insists that it only intended to appropriate the photos of famous people, but the agreement doesn't make any such distinction.
There are a number of other photo-hosting sites, and the Twitpic hubbub should have us all asking: What are we giving up when we use free services online?
THE WEEK ON THE RANGE
We filled you in on the surgery to repair Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' skull; followed the Endeavour mission as Mark Kelly's team did their work aboard the International Space Station; tried to make sense of Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign; and broke the sad news that The Daily Show has evidently spiked the segment on the Baja Arizona movement to split Pima County into its own state.
We told you about UA journalism school alumna Dorothy Parvaz's detention in Syria; talked about mayoral candidate Jonathan Rothschild and his beer preferences, using a cartoon avatar of famed rap group Run-D.M.C.; salivated over a portrait of Sheriff Joe Arpaio in bacon created by the Phoenix New Times; and wondered about state Rep. Vic Williams' characterization of downtown Tucson as "becoming more decayed" and "a corpse."
We followed the approach and aftermath of the Rapture that didn't happen; were a bit disappointed to realize that many pro-life activists were unaware that The Onion was not a real news source, even if it is America's finest; and wondered if it was possible that Nazi doctor-of-death Josef Mengele genetically altered children to look like space aliens and then put them into a Soviet flying saucer, which crashed near Roswell, N.M., back in 1947 as part of Stalin's plan to create mass panic in America.
We filled you in on the latest cycling news; followed the Tucson Padres' home stand at Kino Stadium; wondered why lizards do push-ups; celebrated HBO's renewal of Treme; mourned "Macho Man" Randy Savage; and enjoyed a visit to Oro Valley's Noble Hops Gastropub.
COMMENT OF THE WEEK
"What a rag! Does this thing have any real reporting or just liberal dreaditorializing? Russell Pearce is doing great things for the state. God bless our Governor and Senate President."
—TucsonWeekly.com commenter "Romadness" invents a word in her astute critique of our publication ("Seriously, Arizona Elections Director Amy Bjelland? Seriously?" The Range, May 20).
BEST OF WWW
We're always looking to present information in new ways here at the Tucson Weekly, and in order to keep things fresh, you'll see some changes to our website within the next few weeks. The changes won't be too dramatic, but we now have so much material every day on The Range, our daily dispatch, that we need to tweak some things to make that information more accessible to our regular viewers. It will still be easy to find the content from the print edition, but soon, the front page and each section page will look more like the daily publication we've become.
We always welcome tips or suggestions about the functionality of our website, so if you have an idea to make your TucsonWeekly.com experience better, feel free to e-mail our web producer at firstname.lastname@example.org.