On the internet, whole legal relationships change with nothing more than a click. The click is the smallest indivisible unit of internet life.
The law has been slow to evolve, and companies have tried to fill the gaps (as they perceive them) with layers of contract language. As users get more savvy — and, indeed, as users start to create as much internet content as they consume — this balance of power is shifting.
Although I am a lawyer, this blog cannot be used to convey “real” legal advice. If you want the kind of legal advice on which you can feel safe building your business plan or strategizing about a lawsuit then, unfortunately, I have to advise you to formally hire a lawyer. Hiring a lawyer gets you legal advice tailored to your situation and the specific part of the world in which you live. And it also gives you the formal protections that come with legal counsel — confidentiality and accountability among them.