Terms of use

Legal notice

The legal notice applies to the entire contents of these terms and conditions and Access to Understanding. Please read these terms and conditions carefully before using Access to  Understanding. Using Access to Understanding indicates that you accept these terms and conditions. If you do not accept these terms and conditions, do not use Access to Understanding. This notice is issued by the British Library Board (“the British Library”), the lead partner in Access to Understanding.

Service availability, functionality and use

The British Library makes no warranty that Access to Understanding access and use will be uninterrupted or error free.

The British Library does not make any assurances with regard to the accuracy of the results or output that derives from the use of Access to Understanding.

The British Library does not make any assurances with regard to the availability of, or access to, Access to Understanding.

The British Library hereby disclaims all warranties and conditions with regard to the software that constitutes Access to Understanding, including all warranties and conditions of merchantability, whether express, implied or statutory, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement.

The British Library makes no representations about the suitability of the information contained on, or accessed through Access to Understanding. All information is provided “as is” without warranty of any kind.

The British Library may make improvements and/or changes in Access to Understanding and/or the program(s) that underpin it at any time.

In no event shall the British Library be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of Access to Understanding.

You warrant that in your use of Access to Understanding you will not:

Use any material or information, including images or photographs, which are made available through Access to Understanding in any manner that infringes any copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret, or other proprietary right of any party.

Falsify or delete any copyright management information, such as author attributions, legal or other proper notices or proprietary designations or labels of the origin or source of software or other material contained in a file that is downloaded.

Restrict or inhibit any other user from using Access to Understanding.

Harvest or otherwise collect information about others, including e-mail addresses.

Violate any applicable laws or regulations.

You will indemnify the British Library against all liabilities, costs, expenses, damages and losses (including any direct, indirect or consequential losses, loss of profit, loss of reputation and all interest, penalties and legal and other reasonable professional costs and expenses) suffered or incurred by the British Library arising out of or in connection with:

(a) any breach of the warranties contained in these terms and conditions;

(b) your breach or negligent performance or non-performance of these terms and conditions;

(c) any claim made against the British Library for actual or alleged infringement of a third party’s intellectual property rights arising out of or in connection with your use of Access to Understanding;

(d) any claim made against the British Library by a third party arising out of or in connection with the provision of the Access to Understanding service, to the extent that such claim arises out of the breach, negligent performance or failure by you, your employees, agents or subcontractors to observe these terms and conditions;

This indemnity shall apply whether or not the British Library has been negligent or at fault.

If any third party makes a claim, or notifies an intention to make a claim, against the British Library which may reasonably be considered likely to give rise to a liability under this indemnity (a Claim), the British Library shall:

(a) as soon as reasonably practicable, give written notice of the Claim to you , specifying the nature of the Claim in reasonable detail;

(b) not make any admission of liability, agreement or compromise in relation to the Claim without your prior written consent [(such consent not to be unreasonably conditioned, withheld or delayed), provided that the British Library may settle the Claim (after giving you prior written notice of the terms of settlement (to the extent legally possible), but without obtaining your consent) if the British Library reasonably believes that failure to settle the Claim would be prejudicial to it in any material respect;

Nothing in this clause shall restrict or limit the British Library’s general obligation at law to mitigate a loss it may suffer or incur as a result of an event that may give rise to a claim under this indemnity.

The audio, video, text, images or other material made available on the Access to Understanding website by the British Library to you (collectively, the “Content”) is either: protected by third-party rights such as copyright or trademarks (for which the British Library is permitted to make available to you), is copyright to The British Library Board, or are materials which are in the public domain or made available under a Creative Commons licence.

“Creative Commons content”: Access to Understanding contains Content for which (1) the British Library owns copyright or database rights and wishes to share Content without restriction in support of our mission of supporting access to knowledge, or (ii) have been licensed by third parties under a Creative Commons licence.

Other than where permitted, no part of the Content maybe sold, resold, licensed, transferred, copied or reproduced in whole or in part in any manner or in or on any media to any person without the prior written consent of the British Library. The British Library does not warrant that the sharing of Content, including Public Domain or Creative Commons content will not infringe upon the rights of third parties. It is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright and other use conditions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of the Content.

Where Content comprises of Public Domain and Creative Commons content we shall endeavour to make same Content available for re-use under the same conditions and to label the material with statements that indicate if, and under which conditions it can be re-used. You agree to abide by all copyright notices, licence conditions, restrictions attached to the Content and agree not to remove or alter any notices, conditions, forms of identification, or dedications, if required not to.

Changes are periodically added to the information herein.

Materials accessed through Access to Understanding

The British Library and its partners have developed access to materials (materials being electronic metadata, textual resources and documents) through Access to Understanding responsibly and carefully.

The British Library disclaims all liability for, and warranties (express or implied) as to the accuracy of, the information contained in any of the materials or sources accessed through Access to Understanding, or referred to on Access to Understanding, or on other linked websites or on any subsequent links. This includes, without limitation:

1. any implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose

2. any liability for damage to your computer hardware, data, information, materials and business resulting from the information or the lack of information available

3. any errors, omissions, or inaccuracies in the information

4. any decision made or action taken or not taken in reliance upon the information

5. any copyright or rights to re-use that are defined within the materials or sources themselves.

The British Library reserves the right at all times to disclose any information as it deems necessary to satisfy any applicable law, regulation, legal process or governmental request, or to edit, or to remove any information or materials, in whole or in part, at the discretion of the British Library and its Access to Understanding partners.

The rights to reuse of the materials accessed through Access to Understanding by default reside as detailed within the materials themselves. It is the responsibility of the user to examine the copyright and licensing restrictions of materials accessed through Access to Understanding and to secure all necessary permissions.

Some of the material available through Access to Understanding may be protected by U.K. and/or foreign copyright laws. For such material, the respective authors, publishers or other copyright holders retain rights for reproduction or redistribution. Users of such material are solely responsible for compliance with copyright restrictions and are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by the copyright holder. Transmission or reproduction of protected material, beyond that allowed by the fair use principles of the copyright laws, requires the written permission of the copyright owners.

The British Library makes no warranty as to, and shall bear no liability for, the availability, content, accuracy, timeliness or completeness of such information or that the information may be relied upon for any reason and bears no responsibility for the availability, accuracy, content or legality of any linked site or for that of any subsequent links.

The British Library does not endorse or recommend any of the commercial products, processes, or services that may be offered through Access to Understanding. The views and opinions of authors that may be expressed in any of the materials accessed through Access to Understanding do not necessarily state or reflect those of the British Library or its Access to Understanding partners.

Privacy policy

Information as to the data that is collected as a function of using the interactive features on Access to Understanding is stated in our Privacy policy. The purpose of this statement is to inform users of Access to Understanding as to what information is collected about them, how this information is used and if it is disclosed.