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about drugs and Couchsurfing TOU
Posted October 9th, 2009 - 9:27 pm by from Niteroi, Brazil (Permalink)
In the TOU we find:

5.2 Content Restrictions. You are solely responsible for any content that you submit, post or transmit via our Services. You may not post or submit any content that:

(e) depicts use of illicit drugs;


In the groups we find:

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=4696 about legalization od recreational drugs
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=790 marijuana
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=2110 marijuana
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=7339 marijuana
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=17219 gay guys smoking marijuana
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group.html?gid=8729 hallucinogens mushrooms

just to indicate the most active groups.

Are these groups against TOU 5.2 (e) ?

If they are why Cs has not removed this kind of groups?

If they aren´t what exactely means the TOU 5.2 (e) ?

Due that in TOU we find at art. 18 that "You and we agree to submit to the personal jurisdiction of a state court located in Carroll County, New Hampshire or a US federal court located in Concord, New Hampshire."

Is correct to say that what is legal or illegal is was estabilished by New Hampshire Law or US Federal One?


Thank you

Gianluca

Posted October 12th, 2009 - 12:56 am from Athens, Greece
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Posted October 12th, 2009 - 6:42 am from La Paz, Bolivia
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Posted October 12th, 2009 - 12:32 pm by from St. Catharines, Canada (Permalink)
Thank you for your questions, Gianluca, Menelaos and Cecilia. We are researching for the answer. In accordance with a rule installed by the CS General Manager about a month ago, only the MDST team leader may respond to policy questions related to Safety and Abuse policies.

We are contacting her for response.

Menelaos, please notice that your question, if we understand it correct, has nothing to do with CS policies. It is up to each individual state to decide whether its law will allow to charge a person with something (s)he has posted on CS.

Posted October 13th, 2009 - 6:09 am from Athens, Greece
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Posted October 17th, 2009 - 4:36 pm by from Woodside, United States (Permalink)
Hmmm - this thread is getting insteresting...

Does the FCPA (Foreign Corrupt Practices Act) play a role in CS activities at all?

~~~

From Wikipedia:

[...]
The anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA make it unlawful for a U.S. person, and certain foreign issuers of securities, to make a payment to a foreign official for the purpose of obtaining or retaining business for or with, or directing business to, any person. Since 1998, they also apply to foreign firms and persons who take any act in furtherance of such a corrupt payment while in the United States. The meaning of foreign official is broad. For example, an owner of a bank who is also the minister of finance would count as a foreign official according to the U.S. government. Doctors at government-owned or managed hospitals are also considered to be foreign officials under the FCPA, as is anyone working for a government-owned or managed institution or enterprise. Employees of international organizations such as the United Nations are also considered to be foreign officials under the FCPA. There is no materiality to this act, making it illegal to offer anything of value as a bribe, including cash or non-cash items. The government focuses on the intent of the bribery rather than on the amount.
[...]

~~~

In other words, say, a CSer from the US is looking into doing business abroad and finds another CSer, who happens to fall under the broad 'Gov't official' definition and requests his/her couch in a foreign country and then a business relationship results from that encounter. Would it violate FCPA rules if more surfing/hosting (it has value although no $ is exchanged) takes place that benefits that business relationship?

We all know that CS is not a dating site yet love happens here all the time. We also know that CS is not a commercial site so what's there to keep CSers from engaging in business relationships as well?

Thoughts? Do the TOU protect CS/CSers in cases FCPA rules are violated?

Posted October 18th, 2009 - 12:01 pm by from St. Catharines, Canada (Permalink)
Luis, while your question is not quite a follow-up to this thread, the answer is fairly straightforward.

According to paragraph 2a of the ToU,
"In your use of our Services, you must act responsibly and exercise good judgment. By way of example and not limitation, you shall not violate any applicable law or regulation".

Which means it is the responsibility of CS members to acquaint themselves with all applicable laws and make sure they do not violate them.

Please let us know if it leaves any part of your question unanswered.

Posted December 13th, 2009 - 1:16 am by from Niteroi, Brazil (Permalink)
any news about this question?

I think that is really important to understand our policy about this facts.

Gianluca

Posted December 14th, 2009 - 5:15 am by from St. Catharines, Canada (Permalink)
Hello Gianluca,

We want to point you towards this recent post: http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=20198&post=4489200

Since you are the one to post here - please refer your question to the CUQs under "Problem with Member" category, then repost here the answer you get.

Many thanks for helping us to keep the members well educated and informed!

Posted February 11th, 2010 - 8:30 pm by from Niteroi, Brazil (Permalink)
As asked by Eli here the answer that I received but that in my opinion was not answering to my questions.

So on January 19th I´ve asked some explanations but still I´ve not received any answer:

Hi Carissa,
here they are some permalinks from each group I´ve mentioned
:
http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=4696&post=930274#post1288755

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=790&post=4226863

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=790&post=4684254

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=2110&post=3219817#post3429869

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=2110&post=4060829

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=7339&post=2818358

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=17219&post=2198946

http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=8729&post=3160851


I´ve asked too and was not answered in your post:

Are these groups against TOU 5.2 (e) ?

If they are why Cs has not removed this kind of groups?

If they aren´t what exactely means the TOU 5.2 (e) ?

Due that in TOU we find at art. 18 that "You and we agree to submit to the personal jurisdiction of a state court located in Carroll County, New Hampshire or a US federal court located in Concord, New Hampshire."

Is correct to say that what is legal or illegal is was estabilished by New Hampshire Law or US Federal One?


Thank you

Gianluca

From: noreply@couchsurfing.com
Subject: [CS Help] Member Disputes
Date: Tue, 29 Dec 2009 07:10:57 +0000



Member Disputes
RESPONSE:

Hi Gianluca,

Couchsurfing.org stands by our terms of use, however we also do not censor members nor do we police the site. As such, groups like these are permitted as we hope most members abide by the terms of use they agreed to when they joined the site. Discussions ABOUT said drugs (for example thoughts on side affects, good music to listen to while using, the politics behind illegal drugs etc)are permitted. It is when members cross the line and delve into the depiction of drugs that we may take action. They way I think about it is with old movies. The characters could talk about cocaine, write about it, hint that they were doing it (perhaps with noises or other off screen behavior), but once the character actually inhaled cocaine on the screen the movie was immediately labeled NC-17. Everything else is OK, but the depiction is what crosses the line.

If any of these groups has a specific thread which you feel goes into the realm of depiction compared to discussion sending a message to us with the specific permalink would help us greatly as we need to see the specific example to respond.

We hope that makes sense,

Carissa
Maarssen, Netherlands
CouchSurfing Volunteer

Posted February 12th, 2010 - 2:13 pm by from St. Catharines, Canada (Permalink)
Thank you Gianluca!

In response to your follow-up questions:

The question on what criteria defines a post as legal or illegal, see a previously answered (and archived) post here: http://www.couchsurfing.org/group_read.html?gid=20199&post=3389327

As you know, this group does not discuss specific cases, and only provides general CS-related information. Some of the groups you refer to might have been reviewed and found by the organization volunteers and employees to be within the boundaries of the law and the Terms of Use.

Others yet might be against the Terms and even the law - however, have never come to the organization's attention; as you know, none of the CS teams go "policing" the site in search for breaching conduct.

We hope this answers your questions, and encourage you to further refer to the MDST any content that you believe might be endangering the project and our community in any way.