Terms of Service

Description of Service

SepiaTown, Inc. (also referred to in this document as www.sepiatown.com, or SepiaTown) is a web-based service that allows Users to submit and view, free of charge, low resolution digital reproductions of historical Images and Content, for purposes of enjoyment, education, and personal curiosity. The Images and Content on SepiaTown have been submitted voluntarily by their owners. All Images and Content submitted are credited (where applicable) to the image or material owner, and linked (where applicable) to the Image or Content owner's website. The services offered by SepiaTown, Inc. include the SepiaTown.com website (the "SepiaTown Website") and any other features, content, or applications offered from time to time by SepiaTown.com in connection with the SepiaTown Website (collectively, the "SepiaTown Services"). The SepiaTown Services are hosted in the U.S.

This Terms of Use Agreement ("Agreement") sets forth the legally binding terms for your use of the SepiaTown Services. By using the SepiaTown Services, you agree to be bound by this Agreement, whether you are a "Visitor" (which means that you simply browse the SepiaTown Website) or you are a "Member" (which means that you have registered with SepiaTown.com). The term "User" refers to a Visitor or a Member. You are only authorized to use the SepiaTown Services (regardless of whether your access or use is intended) if you agree to abide by all applicable laws and to this Agreement. Please read this Agreement carefully and save it. If you do not agree with it, you should leave the SepiaTown Website and discontinue use of the SepiaTown Services immediately. If you wish to become a Member and make use of the SepiaTown Services, you must read this Agreement and indicate your acceptance during the Registration process.

This Agreement includes SepiaTown.com's policy for acceptable use of the SepiaTown Services and Content posted on the SepiaTown Website, your rights, obligations and restrictions regarding your use of the SepiaTown Services and SepiaTown.com's Privacy Policy. In order to participate in certain SepiaTown Services, you may be notified that you are required to download software or content and/or agree to additional terms and conditions. Unless otherwise provided by the additional terms and conditions applicable to the SepiaTown Services in which you choose to participate, those additional terms are hereby incorporated into this Agreement. You may receive a copy of this Agreement by emailing us at: info@sepiatown.com - Subject: Terms of Use Agreement.

SepiaTown.com may modify this Agreement from time to time and such modification shall be effective upon posting by SepiaTown.com on the SepiaTown Website. You agree to be bound to any changes to this Agreement when you use the SepiaTown Services after any such modification is posted. It is therefore important that you review this Agreement regularly to ensure you are updated as to any changes.

Content Submission Guidelines

Please choose carefully the information you post on SepiaTown.com and that you provide to other Users. Your SepiaTown.com submissions may not include the following items: any photographs containing nudity, or obscene, lewd, excessively violent, harassing, sexually explicit or otherwise objectionable subject matter. Despite this prohibition, information provided by other SepiaTown.com Members may contain inaccurate, inappropriate, offensive or sexually explicit material, products or services, and SepiaTown.com assumes no responsibility or liability for this material. If you become aware of misuse of the SepiaTown Services by any person, please contact SepiaTown at info@sepiatown.com.

SepiaTown.com reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to reject, refuse to post or remove any submission by you, or to restrict, suspend, or terminate your access to all or any part of the SepiaTown Services at any time, for any or no reason, with or without prior notice, and without liability. SepiaTown expressly reserves the right to remove your submitted material and/or restrict, suspend, or terminate your access to any part of SepiaTown Services if SepiaTown determines, in its sole discretion, that you pose a threat to SepiaTown and/or its Users.

Use of and Membership in the SepiaTown Services is void where prohibited. By using the SepiaTown Services, you represent and warrant that (a) all registration information you submit is truthful and accurate; (b) you will maintain the accuracy of such information; and (c) your use of the SepiaTown Services does not violate any applicable law or regulation. Your profile may be deleted and your Membership may be terminated without warning, if we believe that you have violated these terms.


This Agreement shall remain in full force and effect while you use the SepiaTown Services or are a Member. SepiaTown.com may terminate your Membership at any time, without warning. Even after Membership is terminated, this Agreement will remain in effect.


Although SepiaTown is free, you acknowledge that SepiaTown.com reserves the right to charge for the SepiaTown Services and to institute fees at its discretion. If SepiaTown.com terminates your Membership because you have breached the Agreement, you shall not be entitled to the refund of any unused portion of fees already paid.


When you sign up to become a Member, you will also be asked to choose a password. You are entirely responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your password. You agree not to use the account, username, or password of another Member at any time or to disclose your password to any third party. You agree to notify SepiaTown.com immediately if you suspect any unauthorized use of your account or access to your password. You are solely responsible for any and all use of your account.

Non-commercial Use by Members

The SepiaTown Services are for the personal use of Members only and may not be used in connection with any commercial endeavors except those that are specifically endorsed or approved by SepiaTown.com. Illegal and/or unauthorized use of the SepiaTown Services, including collecting usernames and/or email addresses of Members by electronic or other means for the purpose of sending unsolicited email or unauthorized framing of or linking to the SepiaTown Website, is prohibited. Commercial advertisements, affiliate links, and other forms of solicitation may be removed from Member profiles without notice and may result in termination of Membership privileges. Appropriate legal action will be taken for any illegal or unauthorized use of the SepiaTown Services.

Proprietary Rights in Content on SepiaTown.com

SepiaTown.com does not claim any ownership rights in the text, files, images, photos, video, sounds, musical works, works of authorship, or any other materials (collectively, "Content") that registered members (you) post to the SepiaTown Services. After posting your Content to the SepiaTown Services, you continue to retain all ownership rights (where applicable) in such Content, and you continue to have the right to use your Content in any way you choose. By displaying or publishing ("posting") any Content on or through the SepiaTown Services, you hereby grant to SepiaTown.com a limited license to use, modify, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce, and distribute such Content solely on and through the SepiaTown Services.

Without this license, SepiaTown.com would be unable to provide the SepiaTown Services. For example, without the right to modify Member Content, SepiaTown.com would not be able to digitally geocode image files that Members submit or otherwise format Content to satisfy technical requirements, and without the right to publicly display Member Content, SepiaTown.com could not allow Users to view images posted by Members. The license you grant to SepiaTown.com is non-exclusive (meaning you are free to license your Content to anyone else in addition to SepiaTown.com), fully-paid and royalty-free (meaning that SepiaTown.com is not required to pay you for the use on the SepiaTown Services of the Content that you post), sublicensable (so that SepiaTown.com is able to use its affiliates and subcontractors such as Internet content delivery networks to provide the SepiaTown Services), and worldwide (because the Internet and the SepiaTown Services are global in reach). This license will terminate at the time you remove your Content from the SepiaTown Services. The license does not grant SepiaTown.com the right to sell your Content, nor does the license grant SepiaTown.com the right to distribute your Content outside of the SepiaTown Services.

You represent and warrant that: (i) you own the Content posted by you on or through the SepiaTown Services or otherwise have the right to grant the license set forth in this section, and (ii) the posting of your Content on or through the SepiaTown Services does not violate the privacy rights, publicity rights, copyrights, contract rights or any other rights of any person. You agree to pay for all royalties, fees, and any other monies owing any person by reason of any Content posted by you to or through the SepiaTown Services.

The SepiaTown Services contain Content of SepiaTown.com ("SepiaTown.com Content"). SepiaTown.com Content is protected by copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret and other laws, and SepiaTown.com owns and retains all rights in the SepiaTown.com Content and the SepiaTown Services. SepiaTown.com hereby grants you a limited, revocable, nonsublicensable license to reproduce and display the SepiaTown.com Content (excluding any software code) solely for your personal use in connection with viewing the SepiaTown Website and using the SepiaTown Services.

The SepiaTown Services contain Content of Users and other SepiaTown.com licensors. Except for Content posted by you, you may not copy, modify, translate, publish, broadcast, transmit, distribute, perform, display, or sell any Content appearing on or through the SepiaTown Services.

Content Posted. SepiaTown.com may delete any Content that in the sole judgment of SepiaTown.com violates this Agreement or which may be inappropriate, inaccurate, offensive, illegal or violate the rights, harm, or threaten the safety of any person. SepiaTown.com assumes no responsibility for monitoring the SepiaTown Services for inappropriate Content or conduct. If at any time SepiaTown.com chooses, in its sole discretion, to monitor the SepiaTown Services, SepiaTown.com nonetheless assumes no responsibility for the Content, no obligation to modify or remove any inappropriate Content, and no responsibility for the conduct of the User submitting any such Content.

You are solely responsible for the Content that you post on or through any of the SepiaTown Services, and any material or information that you transmit to other Members and for your interactions with other Users. SepiaTown.com does not endorse and has no control over the Content. Content is not necessarily reviewed by SepiaTown.com prior to posting and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of SepiaTown.com. SepiaTown.com makes no warranties, express or implied, as to the Content or to the accuracy and reliability of the Content or any material or information that you transmit to other Members.

Content/Activity Prohibited

The following is a partial list of the kind of Content that is illegal or prohibited to post on or through the SepiaTown Services. SepiaTown.com reserves the right to investigate and take appropriate legal action against anyone who, in SepiaTown.com's sole discretion, violates this provision, including without limitation, removing the offending communication from the SepiaTown Services and terminating the Membership of such violators. Prohibited Content includes, but is not limited to Content that, in the sole discretion of SepiaTown.com:

  • is patently offensive and promotes racism, bigotry, hatred or physical harm of any kind against any group or individual (except where that image is of valid historical interest, such as a photo of a klan meeting from the 1920's);
  • harasses or advocates harassment of another person;
  • exploits people in a sexual or violent manner;
  • contains nudity, violence, or offensive subject matter or contains a link to an adult website;
  • solicits personal information from anyone under 18;
  • provides any telephone numbers, street addresses, last names, URLs or email addresses (except where that information is of valid hsitorical interest, such as the correct street address of an incorrectly mapped image or a link to explanatory material);
  • promotes information that you know is false or misleading or promotes illegal activities or conduct that is abusive, threatening, obscene, defamatory or libelous;
  • promotes an illegal or unauthorized copy of another person's copyrighted work, such as providing pirated computer programs or links to them, providing information to circumvent manufacture-installed copy-protect devices, or providing pirated music or links to pirated music files;
  • involves the transmission of "junk mail," "chain letters," or unsolicited mass mailing, instant messaging, "spimming," or "spamming";
  • contains restricted or password only access pages or hidden pages or images (those not linked to or from another accessible page);
  • furthers or promotes any criminal activity or enterprise or provides instructional information about illegal activities including, but not limited to making or buying illegal weapons, violating someone's privacy, or providing or creating computer viruses;
  • solicits passwords or personal identifying information for commercial or unlawful purposes from other Users;
  • involves commercial activities and/or sales without our prior written consent such as contests, sweepstakes, barter, advertising, or pyramid schemes;
  • includes a photograph of another person that you have posted without that person's consent (except where that image is of valid historical interest, such as unidentified people outside a Manhattan tavern in 1925)

The following is a partial list of the kind of activity that is illegal or prohibited on the SepiaTown Website and through your use of the SepiaTown Services. SepiaTown.com reserves the right to investigate and take appropriate legal action against anyone who, in SepiaTown.com's sole discretion, violates this provision, including without limitation, reporting you to law enforcement authorities. Prohibited activity includes, but is not limited to:

  • criminal or tortious activity, including child pornography, fraud, trafficking in obscene material, drug dealing, gambling, harassment, stalking, spamming, spimming, sending of viruses or other harmful files, copyright infringement, patent infringement, or theft of trade secrets;
  • advertising to, or solicitation of, any Member to buy or sell any products or services through the SepiaTown Services. You may not transmit any chain letters or junk email to other Members. It is also a violation of these rules to use any information obtained from the SepiaTown Services in order to contact, advertise to, solicit, or sell to any Member without their prior explicit consent. In order to protect our Members from such advertising or solicitation, SepiaTown.com reserves the right to restrict the number of emails which a Member may send to other Members in any 24-hour period to a number which SepiaTown.com deems appropriate in its sole discretion. If you breach this Agreement and send unsolicited bulk email, instant messages or other unsolicited communications of any kind through the SepiaTown Services, you acknowledge that you will have caused substantial harm to SepiaTown.com, but that the amount of such harm would be extremely difficult to ascertain. As a reasonable estimation of such harm, you agree to pay SepiaTown.com $50 for each such unsolicited email or other unsolicited communication you send through the SepiaTown Services;
  • covering or obscuring the banner advertisements on your personal profile page, or any SepiaTown.com page via HTML/CSS or any other means;
  • any automated use of the system;
  • interfering with, disrupting, or creating an undue burden on the SepiaTown Services or the networks or services connected to the SepiaTown Services;
  • attempting to impersonate another Member or person;
  • using the account, username, or password of another Member at any time or disclosing your password to any third party or permitting any third party to access your account;
  • using any information obtained from the SepiaTown Services in order to harass, abuse, or harm another person;
  • using the SepiaTown Services in a manner inconsistent with any and all applicable laws and regulations

Copyright Policy

You may not post, modify, distribute, or reproduce in any way any copyrighted material, trademarks, or other proprietary information belonging to others without obtaining the prior written consent of the owner of such proprietary rights.

Image Terms of Use

The SepiaTown website (www.sepiatown.com) displays images submitted by our users. The types of images users are authorized to submit to SepiaTown include:

  • Images licensed (or used with permission) from photographic archive vendors
  • Images which have "aged out" of copyright
  • Reader-submitted images, with the implied representation that the person submitting the image either owns the copyright in the image and the right to give it to us for use on our site(s), has secured permission, or attests that it is free of copyright restriction
  • Images so widely distributed on the internet that they are deemed to have become part of the public domain

If you think we have published an image or text that infringes your copyright, we will address your concerns; however, if the image falls into one of the categories listed above, we believe that our use of the image is legitimate and we will not remove it from the site.

Please note that we will respond only to notices of alleged infringement that comply with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The text of the Act can be found at the U.S. Copyright Office Web Site, http://lcWeb.loc.gov/copyright/

To file a notice of infringement with us, you must provide a written communication (by email with an attached and signed PDF or by fax) that sets forth the items specified below. Please do not send us regular mail, as we may not receive it in a timely fashion. In all cases, if you do not hear a response from us within 10 days of submitting a complaint, please email us at info@sepiatown.com to confirm that we received your original complaint. Spam blockers sometimes devour important emails from strangers!

To enable us to address your concerns, please provide the following information:

  1. For each allegedly infringing image that you wish to have removed from one of our sites, provide the exact permanent URL for the page containing the material.
  2. Provide information reasonably sufficient to permit us to contact you: an email address is preferred, as well as a telephone contact number.
  3. Provide the following information detailing your claim to ownership of the copyright in the allegedly infringing material:
    • Proof of copyright in the image or text concerned, namely proof of registration of the Image under the DMCA, OR, absent such registration,
    • a detailed description of where the photograph was taken, by whom, who or what the subject of the image is, AND
    • Evidence to support your claim that you own the copyright in the image. We will not comply with requests to remove an image where the complainant cannot prove that they own the copyright in the image in question.
  4. Include the following statement: "I swear, under penalty of perjury, that the information in the notification is accurate and that I am the copyright owner or am authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed."
  5. Sign the document and email it to: info@sepiatown.com

Please note that you will be liable for damages (including costs and attorneys' fees) if you materially misrepresent that any material on our sites is infringing your copyrights. Indeed, in a recent case a company that sent an infringement notification seeking removal of online materials that were protected by the Fair Use doctrine was ordered to pay such costs and attorneys' fees. The company agreed to pay over $100,000. Accordingly, if you are not sure whether material available online infringes your copyright, we suggest that you first contact an attorney.

Please note that a copy of each legal notice we receive will be sent (with your personal information removed) to Chilling Effects for publication. You can see an example of such a publication at http://www.chillingeffects.org/dmca512/notice.cgi?NoticeID=861.

We also reserve the right to publish your letter on the site(s).

Member Disputes

You are solely responsible for your interactions with other SepiaTown.com Members. SepiaTown.com reserves the right, but has no obligation, to monitor disputes between you and other Members.


Use of the SepiaTown Services is also governed by our Privacy Policy, which is incorporated into this Agreement by this reference.


SepiaTown.com is not responsible for any incorrect or inaccurate Content posted on the SepiaTown Website or in connection with the SepiaTown Services, whether caused by Users of the SepiaTown Services or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the SepiaTown Services. Images and other materials submitted by Members on the SepiaTown Website may contain links to other websites. SepiaTown.com is not responsible for the Content, accuracy or opinions expressed on such websites, and such websites are in no way investigated, monitored or checked for accuracy or completeness by SepiaTown.com. Inclusion of any linked website on the SepiaTown Services does not imply approval or endorsement of the linked website by SepiaTown.com. When you access these third-party sites, you do so at your own risk. SepiaTown.com takes no responsibility for third party advertisements which are posted on this SepiaTown Website or through the SepiaTown Services, nor does it take any responsibility for the goods or services provided by its advertisers. SepiaTown.com is not responsible for the conduct, whether online or offline, of any User of the SepiaTown Services. SepiaTown.com assumes no responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of, any User or Member communication. SepiaTown.com is not responsible for any problems or technical malfunction of any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, servers or providers, computer equipment, software, failure of any email or players due to technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or on any of the SepiaTown Services or combination thereof, including any injury or damage to Users or to any person's computer related to or resulting from participation or downloading materials in connection with the SepiaTown Services. Under no circumstances shall SepiaTown.com be responsible for any loss or damage, including personal injury or death, resulting from use of the SepiaTown Services, attendance at a SepiaTown.com event, from any Content posted on or through the SepiaTown Services, or from the conduct of any Users of the SepiaTown Services, whether online or offline. The SepiaTown Services are provided "AS-IS" and as available and SepiaTown.com expressly disclaims any warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or non-infringement. SepiaTown.com cannot guarantee and does not promise any specific results from use of the SepiaTown Services.

Limitation on Liability


U.S. Export Controls

Software available in connection with the SepiaTown Services (the "Software") is further subject to United States export controls. No Software may be downloaded from the SepiaTown Services or otherwise exported or re-exported in violation of U.S. export laws. Downloading or using the Software is at your sole risk.


If there is any dispute about or involving the SepiaTown Services, you agree that the dispute shall be governed by the laws of the State of New York, USA, without regard to conflict of law provisions and you agree to exclusive personal jurisdiction and venue in the state and federal courts of the United States located in the State of New York, City of New York. Either SepiaTown.com or you may demand that any dispute between SepiaTown.com and you about or involving the SepiaTown Services must be settled by arbitration utilizing the dispute resolution procedures of the American Arbitration Association (AAA) in New York City, New York, USA, provided that the foregoing shall not prevent SepiaTown.com from seeking injunctive relief in a court of competent jurisdiction.


You agree to indemnify and hold SepiaTown.com, its subsidiaries, and affiliates, and their respective officers, agents, partners and employees, harmless from any loss, liability, claim, or demand, including reasonable attorneys' fees, made by any third party due to or arising out of your use of the SepiaTown Services in violation of this Agreement and/or arising from a breach of this Agreement and/or any breach of your representations and warranties set forth above and/or if any Content that you post on the SepiaTown Website or through the SepiaTown Services causes SepiaTown.com to be liable to another.


This Agreement is accepted upon your use of the SepiaTown Website or any of the SepiaTown Services and is further affirmed by you becoming a Member. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between you and SepiaTown.com regarding the use of the SepiaTown Services. The failure of SepiaTown.com to exercise or enforce any right or provision of this Agreement shall not operate as a waiver of such right or provision. The section titles in this Agreement are for convenience only and have no legal or contractual effect. SepiaTown.com is a trademark of SepiaTown, Inc. This Agreement operates to the fullest extent permissible by law. If any provision of this Agreement is unlawful, void or unenforceable, that provision is deemed severable from this Agreement and does not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions. Please contact us at info@sepiatown.com with any questions regarding this Agreement.

Notification of Changes

Whenever SepiaTown, Inc. changes its Terms of Use, it will post those changes to this Statement, and other places we deem appropriate to make users aware of such changes.