The Merced Sun Star's User Agreement

August 27, 2007 

Welcome to mercedsunstar.com, a news, information and communication service available on the Internet's World Wide Web. The service combines much of The Merced Sun Star newspaper with additional material available only on mercedsunstar.com. Both The Merced Sun Star and mercedsunstar.com are divisions of McClatchy Newspapers, Inc., a subsidiary of The McClatchy Company.

You must read, agree with and accept all of the terms and conditions contained in these Terms of Use before you may become a Member of mercedsunstar.com. By registering as a Member, and/or by accessing and using mercedsunstar.com, you agree to these Terms of Use.

From time to time, we may make changes to these Terms of Use by posting the changes in this location. Such notice will provide a date upon which the changes will be effective. Should you object to any such modifications to these Terms of Use or become dissatisfied with Mercedsunstar.com in any way, your only recourse is to immediately terminate your Membership and discontinue use of mercedsunstar.com. Otherwise, continuing to use the service after the effective date means that you agree to be bound by the changes.

Cost At this time, there is no cost for using the basic or premium services of mercedsunstar.com. From time to time there may be premium content available via subscription or surcharge, and those areas will be clearly marked. Because this is an advertising-supported service, we encourage you to patronize the advertisers that help to make this service possible.

The Merced Sun-Star's newspaper electronic archives carry a fee of $3.95 per full-text article downloaded. Note that most news articles remain available for seven days in the pages of mercedsunstar.com. Additional information, including credit card information may be required to complete this purchase.

Registration Access to special content, services and features on mercedsunstar.com requires users to be print subscribers to The Merced Sun Star and to register and become Members of mercedsunstar.com. Member registration requires you to provide certain Personally Identifiable Information, such as your name, e-mail address, street address, gender, and date of birth. Please see our Privacy Policy for information on mercedsunstar.com's information gathering and how we intend to use and share any information we collect. If you become a Member of mercedsunstar.com, you accept responsibility for all activities that occur under your account. You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your password and for restricting access to your computer so others may not access mercedsunstar.com using your username or account in whole or in part. Mercedsunstar.com reserves the right to terminate Membership and deny access to the site to any person who violates this Terms Of Use.

Copyrights and trademarks Material published on mercedsunstar.com, including articles, photos, graphics, bulletin board postings, audio and video clips, and other content, is copyrighted by The Merced Sun Star, or by other information providers who have licensed their content for use on mercedsunstar.com. Additionally, the entire content of mercedsunstar.com is also copyrighted as a collective work under the United States copyright laws; the owner of the collective work is The Merced Sun Star. You cannot reproduce, republish or redistribute material from The Merced Sun Star, the Associated Press, the New York Times News Service, the Washington Post-Los Angeles Times News Service, Scripps Howard News Service, Newhouse News Service and other news services and syndicates in any way without the written consent of the copyright owner.

You may, however, electronically store a reasonable portion of mercedsunstar.com content for your personal, non-commercial use by making a single electronic copy on your computer's hard drive, a single copy on a disk or other media or a single copy in printed form. You agree, however, that you will not store or archive a significant portion of the content or create a database using the content.

These rules also apply: 1. You will not in any way violate the intellectual property laws protecting the content accessible through mercedsunstar.com. This means you agree not to copy, modify, publish, transmit, create derivative works from, transfer, sell or display the content, including logos, trademarks or service marks, or otherwise violate the proprietary rights of mercedsunstar.com or others. 2. You will not reuse, republish or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it, whether over the Internet or otherwise, and whether or not for payment, without the express written permission of The Merced Sun Star or a third-party copyright holder. 3. You will cooperate promptly and completely with any reasonable request by The Merced Sun Star related to an investigation of infringement of copyright or other proprietary right.

To obtain permission to reuse or republish any material copyrighted by The Merced Sun Star, please contact mtharp@mercedsun-star.com. For permission to reuse or republish The Merced Sun Star copyrighted material in printed formats, contact the permissions editor in the Newsroom at (209)722-1511. The Merced Sun Star cannot grant permission to reuse or republish material from other information providers, such as the Associated Press or New York Times News Service. Please contact them directly.

Member Content is any information you provide to us or other users in the registration process, in any public message area (including the forums area) or through any email feature. You are solely responsible for Member Content, and we act as a passive conduit for your online distribution and publication of Member Content. Member Content must conform to the guidelines set forth under Online Conduct below. Mercedsunstar.com reserves the right to remove any material that it believes may violate these Terms or Use, or any copyright or third-party rights.

If you believe that mercedsunstar.com or any user of mercedsunstar.com has infringed your copyright in any material way, please notify our Copyright Agent and provide the following information: 1. An identification of the copyrighted work that you claim has been infringed. 2. An identification of the material on mercedsunstar.com that you claim is infringing or is subject to infringing activity, with enough detail so that we can locate the material on our site. 3. Your name, address, telephone number and e-mail address. 4. A statement by you that you have a good-faith belief that the disputed use is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent or the law. 5. A statement by you declaring that the above information in your Notice is accurate, made under penalty of perjury, and that you are authorized to act on behalf of the owner of the copyright interest involved. 6. Your physical or electronic signature.

The Copyright Agent for mercedsunstar.com is Karole Morgan-Prager, General Counsel, who can be reached at 2100 Q Street, Sacramento, CA 95816 , or at kmorgan-prager@mcclatchy.com or at 916-321-1828.

The Merced Sun Star, mercedsunstar.com and its logos are registered service marks or trademarks.

Submissions
By submitting any Member Content to mercedsunstar.com, you automatically grant The Merced Sun Star and mercedsunstar.com a nonexclusive, royalty-free, worldwide, perpetual, sublicensable (through multiple tiers), license to use, modify, copy, distribute, transmit, publicly display, publicly perform, publish, adapt, create derivative works of, distribute, transfer or sell any such content, for any purpose, including commercial purposes, without any payment to you, in any type of media or in any form now known or later developed. In addition, you automatically waive and give up any claim that any use of such content violates any of your rights, including privacy rights, publicity rights, moral rights or any other right, including the right to approve the way mercedsunstar.com uses such content.

Online conduct
Mercedsunstar.com encourages a free and open exchange of ideas in a climate of mutual respect. Any action by a user that infringes on another user's right to use and enjoy mercedsunstar.com is prohibited. Mercedsunstar.com reserves the right, but does not assume any obligation, to monitor your online conduct to enforce these Terms of Use. Without limitation, mercedsunstar.com reserves the right to suspend or terminate your access to and use of the site if, in our view, your conduct fails to meet any of the following guidelines: a. Members shall not provide any information that is false, misleading or inaccurate. b. Members shall not use any portion of mercedsunstar.com for any unlawful purpose and will comply with all applicable domestic and international laws, statutes, ordinances and regulations. c. Members shall not use any portion of mercedsunstar.com for uploading, posting, emailing, transmitting or otherwise making available Member Content that infringes any patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright or other proprietary rights of any party. Only the owner or a representative designated by the owner may upload copyrighted material to mercedsunstar.com. d. Members shall not use any portion of mercedsunstar.com for uploading, posting, emailing, transmitting or otherwise making available Member Content that is harmful to minors in any way, harassing, harmful, threatening, abusive, vulgar, obscene, defamatory, libelous, hateful, or racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable. e. Members shall not use any portion of mercedsunstar.com for uploading, posting, emailing, transmitting or otherwise making available junk mail, commercial advertisements, or any other form of commercial solicitation. f. Members shall not attempt to interfere with any other person's use of mercedsunstar.com. g. Members shall not misrepresent their identity nor impersonate any person. h. Members shall not hold themselves out as sponsored by, endorsed by, or affiliated with The Merced Sun Star. i. Members shall not attempt to modify, translate, adapt, edit, decompile, disassemble, or reverse engineer any software programs used by The Merced Sun Star or mercedsunstar.com in connection with mercedsunstar.com website.

To register a complaint about another user's conduct, please send an e-mail message to webstaff@modbee.com, or write to Customer Service, mercedsunstar.com, 1325 H Street, Modesto, CA 95352.

Privacy rights Mercedsunstar.com takes your personal privacy seriously. That is why we have adopted our Privacy Policy, which explains our position on information gathering and how we intend to use and share any information we collect. Your use of the mercedsunstar.com website or our services signifies acknowledgement of and consent to the information practices in our Privacy Policy. Other services, advertisers and information providers that are accessible on mercedsunstar.com are provided by third parties, and have their own policies about using personal information. You should contact these third parties directly for their policies.

You agree that mercedsunstar.com may access and disclose information about you or your use of our service when we deem it necessary or appropriate to comply with the law, to respond to claims, to protect our systems and customers, to ensure the integrity and operation of our business and systems, or to protect the rights or property of mercedsunstar.com or its affiliates. Such disclosure may include, without limitation, Personally Identifiable Information (name, e-mail address, etc.), your IP address, clickstream and traffic information and usage history. Our right to disclose any such information shall govern over any terms of our Privacy Policy.

International Users You acknowledge and agree that due to the international dimension of our company we may use the data collected in the course of our relationship for the purposes identified in the Privacy Policy, for the purposes identified in our other communications with you, or to provide the information to other businesses and selected third parties which may be outside your resident jurisdiction. Mercedsunstar.com stores and processes your information on computers located in the United States that are protected by physical as well as technological security devices. In addition, such data may be stored on servers located in other jurisdictions. By providing us with your data, you consent to the transfer of such data. If you object to your information being transferred or used in this way please do not use our site or services.

Children's use of mercedsunstar.com Mercedsunstar.com is particularly concerned with providing a safe online environment for children. In the near future, parents Parents and legal guardians of children under age 13 who register will be able to establish a member account for their child by accessing the Member Center. In the interim, children under age 13 without signed Parental Consent Forms are not allowed to become members of mercedsunstar.com. For more information about how modestobee.com handles children's privacy, please refer to our Privacy Policy.

Other services and information providers accessible through mercedsunstar.com have their own policies about children's privacy, and you should contact them directly for their policies.

Mercedsunstar.com strongly recommends that parents supervise the use of the Internet by their children. A number of commercial products are available to help limit access to material on the Internet that you may consider harmful or inappropriate for your child.

Disclaimer While mercedsunstar.com strives for accuracy, it does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information or database on our service. Nor does mercedsunstar.com guarantee or warrant that any files available for downloading will be free of defects. Neither The Merced Sun Star nor any of its information providers shall be liable in any way to you or the other parties for delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions in the material published in mercedsunstar.com.

While we take reasonable steps to ensure that no viruses, worms, Trojan horses or other destructive properties are present, the entire risk as to the quality and performance of mercedsunstar.com and the accuracy and completeness of any information is with the user of our service.

Likewise, mercedsunstar.com does not warrant that our service will be uninterrupted or error-free. Mercedsunstar.com makes no warranties, express or implied, including, without limitation, those of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose any information published on the mercedsunstar.com Web site or any products or services sold through the mercedsunstar.com Web site.

Opinions, advice and all other information expressed on modestobee.com bulletin boards represent the individual's own views and not necessarily those of mercedsunstar.com. Mercedsunstar.com does not endorse and is not responsible for statements, advice and opinions made by anyone other than authorized mercedsunstar.com spokespersons.

Any investment decisions or other actions that users take based on information available on mercedsunstar.com should first be reviewed by a competent financial adviser or other professional.

THE MERCEDSUNSTAR.COM SERVICE IS PROVIDED ON AN "AS IS" AND "AS AVAILABLE" BASIS. WE MAKE NO WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION, WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR NONINFRINGEMENT, OR WARRANTIES REGARDING THE ACCURACY, RELIABILITY OR COMPLETENESS OF THE CONTENT OR ANY OTHER SERVICE OR PRODUCT ON OR RELATED TO THE SERVICE (INCLUDING ANY LINK TO ANOTHER WEB SITE OR RESOURCE).

In no event will mercedsunstar.com be liable for (i) any incidental, consequential, or indirect damages (including, but not limited to, damages for loss of business profits, business interruption, loss of programs or information, and the like) arising out of the use of or inability to use mercedsunstar.com, or any information or services provided on mercedsunstar.com, even if mercedsunstar.com has been advised of the possibility of such damages, or (ii) any claim attributable to errors, omissions, or other inaccuracies published on mercedsunstar.com.

Indemnification You agree to indemnify, defend and hold mercedsunstar.com harmless from and against any and all liability, loss, claims, damages, costs and/or actions (including attorney's fees) based on or arising from any breach by you of your obligations under these Terms of Use. We reserve the right to defend any such claim, and you agree to provide us with such reasonable cooperation and information as we may request.

Jurisdiction This agreement between mercedsunstar.com and its users will be governed and interpreted under the laws of the state of California. Merced County, California District Court has jurisdiction in any dispute arising from this agreement. In the event that any provision of this agreement is found to be in conflict with the law, such provision shall be restated to reflect the original intent, and all other terms and conditions shall remain in full force and effect.

Arbitration. Any legal controversy or legal claim arising out of or relating to these Terms of Use or mercedsunstar.com, excluding legal action taken by The Merced Sun Star to obtain an injunction relating to its intellectual property, shall be settled by binding arbitration in accordance with the commercial arbitration rules of the American Arbitration Association. Any such controversy or claim shall be arbitrated on an individual basis, and shall not be consolidated in any arbitration with any claim or controversy of any other party. The arbitration shall be conducted in Merced, California, and judgment on the arbitration award may be entered into any court having jurisdiction thereof.

Termination Notwithstanding any provision of these Terms of Use, we reserve the right, without notice and in our sole discretion, to terminate any or all of the mercedsunstar.com service and/or your license to use the mercedsunstar.com service, or to block or prevent future access to and use of mercedsunstar.com.

Severability If any provision of these Terms of Use shall be deemed unlawful, void or for any reason unenforceable, then that provision shall be deemed severable from these Terms of Use and shall not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions.

Offices Mercedsunstar.com offices are located at The Merced Sun Star, 3033 G Street, Merced, CA 95340 (209) 722-1511.

Questions and comments about mercedsunstar.com

We hope you enjoy using mercedsunstar.com. Questions and comments about the content of mercedsunstar.com may be sent by submitting an e-mail to webstaff@mercedsun-star.com. We read all comments sent to us and try to respond to as many as possible.

Technical questions regarding your software, your configuration or your connection should be directed to your Internet access provider. Mercedsunstar.com cannot address questions except those specifically about content and services that we provide.

Merced Sun-Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

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