What activities are not allowed on Scribd? (Prohibited Use Policy)

Scribd is home to a diverse community of authors, publishers, and readers. All communities have standards, and Scribd is no exception. It is our goal to create a place where anyone can come and read or listen to books in a comfortable and safe environment. We have developed some simple, basic guidelines for content posted to Scribd. Content that does not adhere to these guidelines can be removed at any time without notice. Scribd can, at any time, disable the accounts of users that egregiously or repeatedly violate Scribd's Terms of Use or these guidelines, or otherwise fail to remediate violating activity upon notification.

Harassment and abuse

Scribd strictly prohibits the use of any element of the Scribd platform, including titles, descriptions, comments, notes, reviews, books, and documents to target a private individual or group in any manner determined by Scribd as harassing or abusive. Scribd reserves the right to remove any content determined to be in violation of Scribd's Terms of Use or any other Scribd policy.

  • You may not post documents that harass, or invite harassment of, a private individual or group.
  • You may not use titles and descriptions in a way that harasses, abuses, or cruelly denigrates a private individual or group. 
  • You may not use comments and reviews in a way that is intended to harass or cruelly denigrate a private individual or group.
  • You may not post personal information (such as street addresses, social security and identification numbers, credit card information, phone numbers, etc), even if the information is considered “public” or published publicly elsewhere. Personal information in court records, arrest records, and other “public documents” must be fully redacted and completely unreadable to both humans and computers before posting to Scribd.
  • You may not use titles and descriptions to embellish public records, including court records, in a harassing or abusive manner.
  • You may not post chat logs, tweets, or posts from other social media platforms without all parties’ explicit permission.
  • You may not post photos of private individuals without their explicit permission.
  • You may not post links to websites that aggregate abusive or harassing material for the purposes of targeting private individuals or groups.

Cheating and plagiarism

Scribd does not permit the posting, and strictly prohibits the sales, of content that is intended to facilitate academic cheating and plagiarism. We also do not condone or support the use of any content from Scribd for the purposes of academic cheating or plagiarism.

What is not permitted?

  • The sale or use of “course packs,” “test banks,” “cheat guides,” and other content that provides answers to tests and other school course material.
  • The sale, posting, and promotion of content that promotes plagiarism. 
  • The sale, posting, and promotion of any content that guarantees grades or test results.
  • The use of material obtained from Scribd in any way that violates a school's academic code of conduct or academic code of ethics.

What is permitted:

  • You may post personal, individual class notes. All notes must be authored by the account holder and may not be sold. Notes may not link to other sites with “complete” versions.

Advertising & promotional material

Not all advertising is prohibited on Scribd, but we do have some very firm restrictions. These rules apply to everything you share on Scribd, not just documents, including your reviews, comments, and even your profile information.

What is not permitted?

  • You may not use Scribd or its related services for the primary purpose of gaining advertising or membership revenue.
  • You may not publish or link to anything that promotes or facilitates the following:
    • illegal services or products;
    • sexual services or products;
    • piracy of movies, software, or any other kind of media;
    • online pharmacies or health products;
    • affiliate marketing topics;
    • search engine optimization;
    • malicious sites that either try to harm users in some way or are about harming them.
  • You may not place advertisements or links in ways that could deceive or confuse users. This includes, but isn't limited to:
    • ads that appear to be noncommercial scribbles;
    • links in documents that cover entire pages, so that the pages cannot be clicked on without following the links;
    • links in documents from URL-shortening services such as bit.ly or TinyURL;
    • e-books that are part of overt or covert sales operations—often known as “private label rights” (PLR), “master resell rights” (MRR), or “resell rights” (RR) ebooks.
  • You may not use the Scribd website, its related services (such as the embeddable document reader) or resources, or any member's content with the effect of competing with or displacing the market for Scribd (as determined solely by Scribd).

What is permitted?

  • You're welcome to publish your own original advertisements or other content to promote your own business or artistic endeavor, provided your primary purpose isn't to gain advertising or membership revenue. For example, you can publish your garage sale flyer and your hardware company's product catalog.
  • You may publish parodies or satires of advertisements.
  • You may also publish advertisements that serve as illustration or supporting material for an original work, such as a term paper or business plan.

Copyrighted material & public domain content

Copyright is designed to protect someone's intellectual property from theft. Generally speaking, anything you write is automatically and implicitly copyrighted. Under US law you don't need to register your work for it to be protected. Copyright can apply to many different kinds of works, including but not limited to music, song lyrics, poems, novels, technical books and movies.

If you share copyrighted material without the permission of the person who holds the copyright, that's called copyright infringement and it is illegal. You may not use Scribd to share such material. Scribd cannot—and will not—provide legal advice pertaining to the copyright status of a particular document. You are responsible for knowing the copyright status of your content and whether its copyright license permits re-distribution via the web BEFORE you upload it to Scribd.

Scribd’s Copyright Resource Center provides more detailed information about Scribd’s copyright policies and guidelines.

What is not permitted?

  • You may not publish a copyrighted document on Scribd if you don't own its copyright (or have permission from the person or company that owns its copyright).
  • You may not use Scribd to offer or request copyrighted material if you don't own the copyright to the material (or have permission from the person who owns its copyright).
  • You may not copy somebody else's work from Scribd and sell or share it as your own, unless that person gave you explicit permission to do so.

Other prohibited activities

Other prohibited activities, include, but are not limited to:

  • You may not impersonate another person, whether they are a member of Scribd or not.
  • You may not post or link to material that is intended to incite violence against any person or group.
  • You may not post or link to any pornography or explicit sexual content on Scribd. This includes, but is not limited to, pornographic images and images of sexual situations, in any form whatsoever. Scribd’s abuse team has full leverage to determine which items full under the category of prohibited pornography.
  • You may not post content produced by, or for, any entity that can be reasonably defined as a terrorist organization, or their members.
  • You may not post content that promotes or celebrates acts of terrorism.
  • You may not publish or post content that is otherwise illegal to publish in the United States of America.
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