Your Portability Policy

Your portability policy can contain whatever works for your product and your customers. Share your approach, business model or technologies. Help your community make informed choices.

We have provided this set of questions to highlight areas related to data portability. They are not comprehensive and will evolve over time. You are encouraged to add whatever topics or issues will help your users make informed decisions.

Version 1.0, updated May 18, 2010.

APIs and Data Formats

Are your APIs and Data Formats Documented?

  • Yes - provide a link to the documentation
  • No - explain which formats are documented and which are not
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

SocialSharingSite uses both public and licensed, proprietary data formats. Our own activity stream data is made available via Atom. However, we use VerySecureDRM for purchased, digital downloads and this format is not available for publication. See the 'File Formats' section of our support area for detailed information.


Identity and Authentication

Do people need to create a new identity for this product, or can they use an existing one?

  • Fresh Start - The person is expected to create a fresh identity that is used on this site. This site does not trust a third party to authenticate identity.
  • Existing Identity - The person can register an account using an identity authenticated by some third party. This product assumes that, by selecting a third party to authenticate their identity, the person accepts that third party as trustworthy.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

EmbarrassingDiseases.org helps people cope with diseases that would be embarrassing if they were publicly known. Because privacy is our top concern, we don't link to other internet identities and encourage people to create new identities for use here.


Sample:

SocialSharingSite wants you to connect all of your identities here. We encourage you to use your Facebook, Twitter, Google, and OpenID identities here.


Working with Things Stored Somewhere Else

Must people import things into this product, or can the product refer to things stored someplace else? Can this product work with objects and information whose "authoritative home" is another product, or can this product only work with things that it hosts directly?

  • Home - In order for this product to work with a thing, it must be hosted directly.
  • Visitor - This product has the ability to access and work with things that are hosted by third parties, assuming that the third party allows this.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

InPlacePictureEditor enables you to edit your pictures right where they are. Do you like Facebook? Us, too! Prefer Flickr? That's also great. Wherever your pictures live, you can edit them with InPlacePictureEditor.


Sample:

In order to add our Secret Sauce, SuperHighEndEditor must extend the file format used to store your pictures. Because of this, you must upload those pictures to us, and we will host them for you. When you wish to export your final work, it will be provided in a standard format.


Watching For Updates

Can this site watch for updates that people make on other sites? In cases where the product tracks or manages things that the person has stored on some third party product, can this product automatically keep itself up to date?

  • No Imports - This site does not import data
  • One Time Import - This product only sees the remote thing at import time, and does not watch for changes.
  • Watch For Updates - This product watches the third party for changes, and updates its own view of the remote thing to match.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

SuperAddressBook provides a tool to merge all of your old address books into one. Import your old address books into SuperAddressBook and then throw the old ones away.


Sample:

MetaAddressBook watches all of your address books and provides a unified view. We watch your address books for changes, and provide a unified view with duplicates removed.


Broadcasting Changes Made Here

If person updates something here, is that change stored only here or can it notify another product? Does this product provide a way for others to ask for updates?

  • Silent - This product does not broadcast changes.
  • Chatty - Updates made here are also forwarded to a third party.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

In order to preserve your privacy, EmbarrassingDiseases.org will not make the information you provide publicly available, or broadcast it to any other product.


Sample:

InPlacePictureEditor uses PubSubHubbub to ensure that you can share your creations anywhere you wish.


Access from Other Products

Can the person allow other sites to use the things they've created or updated here? Does this product provide a way for third parties to authenticate a person and read or write?

  • No Access - The person must use this product to read or access whatever it manages.
  • Other Products Can Read - The person can provide the third party with authentication credentials, and can read data managed by this product.
  • Other Products Can Write - The person can provide the third party with authentication credentials, and can write data managed by this product.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

Since you've already uploaded your files, SuperHighEndEditor allows you to read and update them in-place. Files are still access protected, however, and you must authenticate using OAuth 4.7 before you will be able to use the files.


Backing Up

Can the person download or remotely access a copy of everything they've provided to this service? As part of their standard use of most products, people import or create things. Does this product provide an open, DRM-free way for people to retrieve or access via third party all of the things they've created or provided?

  • No Download - This product does not offer the person the ability to download the things they've provided.
  • Some Download - This product allows the download of a subset of what the user has provided
  • Full Download - The product provides an open, DRM-free way for people to download all of the things they've provided to the product, or remotely access it using a third party product.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

Because we know how important this information is to you, your paid subscription to YourFamilyGenealogy.com includes the ability to download a formatted copy of all the information you have provided.


Public Data

Can the person download or remotely access information that others have provided to the product? In cases where the product allows download or remote access, can the person export or access all of the data to which they have access, or only data which they have directly created?

  • Provider Only - This person may only export or access data which they have directly provided.
  • Full Access - The person may export or download any data to which they have access on this product, subject to reasonable usage and abuse rules.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

You can download all of the stories that you have created on CommunityStorySharing.com, but you can only download others' stories if they have been marked for public download.


Closing An Account

Will this site delete an account and all associated data upon a user's request? If the user creates a password or account for use with this product, does the product provide a way to cancel the account and erase all data associated with it?

  • Immortal Accounts - Accounts or passwords, once created, are assumed to live for as long as the product is available. Desktop applications and other stand-alone products that do not have host services may have no way to remotely revoke accounts or passwords.
  • Data Expires - If this product acts as a hub, the data it copies from other sites will expire in a set amount of time. This product must be linked to a place where it can refresh or synchronize data in order to stay current.
  • Accounts Deleted Upon Request - This product has the ability to remove a person's account and all relevant data, and will do so when requested by the person or third party with appropriate legal standing.
  • Doesn't Apply

Sample:

One of the most important services we at YourFamilyGenealogy.com provide is the ability for future generations to find information about you. We have multiple backups at distributed locations, independent power, and periodically copy our databases to stone tablet. We will not delete your data, at any time, for any reason. Our databases are hosted on floating platforms in undisclosed oceans, and are beyond the reach of any national government. Rest assured, your data will always be available.


Sample:

SocialSharingSite retains data for 42.5 hours, at which time the fire alarms are disabled and the server room is set alight.


Sample:

Here at MetaAddressBook.com, we pride ourselves on living in the moment, without regret. We encourage you to do the same. Thus, we will delete accounts upon request, and do not attempt to verify ownership status. Any person can request that any account be deleted at any time.



Where Things Are Stored

Do you disclose where my data is being kept in the real world? If Yes, where can I learn where my data is kept? Can I request to have my data stored in one jurisdiction or another?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Doesn't Apply

Note that the examples are fiction. Any similarity to real companies is coincidental.