Terms of Service
(Last updated 3/13/2019)
These Terms govern your use of HeartsConnect and the products, features, apps, services, technologies, and software we offer (the HeartsConnect Product or Product).
HeartsConnect is comprised of software and a mobile application that will allow individuals to log into an assigned private group where they can share pictures, blogs, videos, and have discussions with each other in a secure environment. Additionally, it will include a “private cloud” or extensive database where all this information will be stored indefinitely.
For each child placed for adoption or placed in a foster home, we will create an online group for the adoptive parents and birth parents. From any internet access, they can connect to HeartsConnect.app and their group. Once there, they can post updates and pictures of themselves and/or the child.
An email will be sent automatically to the other party that there is a new post and emails can automatically be sent out at holidays, birthdays and designated times to remind the participants to post a new update. We have learned that though birthparents are transient and though phone numbers and addresses changed regularly, their email generally remains constant. This can be used as a contact method as well as the login for their online group.
When the child is old enough and interested, the adoptive family and birthparents can ask that they be given access to the group. There may be reasons to give other people, such as grandparents, access but it must be agreed upon by both parties. There will not be any identifying information listed on either party, unless, again, all parties agree. This will protect the identity of the parties and allow for freedom to safely communicate.
It will include tools that will allow either party to download and print out content. This can be in the form of a book that may serve as a keepsake for the child or others.
It is important that the information be kept secure and permanent, so it can be depended upon for years to come. The tool will have bank-level security. Additionally, the database will be large enough to accommodate large amounts of information.
HeartsConnect will provide professional social workers to provide support to users to deal with relationship problems that may arise. Additionally, there will be a way to limit or remove someone’s access to the information or their ability to contribute if necessary.
Our mission is to give people the power to stay connected to those involved with their adoption—including, adoptive families, birth parents and adoptees, called the adoption triad or Triad. To help advance this mission, we provide the products and services described below to you.
Connect and provide a personalized experience for you:
Your experience on HeartsConnect is designed to connect you with those you want to communicate with about the adoption you are involved with. What you share will be personal to you and other members or your adoption triad group. We do this by setting up a personalized, exclusive online portal that allows adoptive families to connect with the birthparents of their child. With mutual agreements, parties can invite others to join the group including the adoptee at the appropriate time.
Empower you to express yourself and communicate about what matters to you:
There are many ways on HeartsConnect to communicate with your adoption triad group and others about what matters to you - for example, using HeartsConnect to share messages, photos, videos, and stories.
Provide safe and functional services for everyone:
People will share on HeartsConnect only if they feel safe.
We are careful to keep identifying information private, allowing those in the triad group to share only the information they want to share. We collect demographic data for internal use only and do not share it without the written consent of anyone who it may affect. If there is any misuse of our Product, including conduct that harms others, we will take appropriate action - for example, offering help, removing content, blocking access to certain features, disabling an account, or contacting law enforcement. We may share data with the appropriate authorities when we detect misuse or harmful conduct by someone using one of our Products.
Research ways to make our services better:
We engage in research and collaborate with others to improve our Products. One way we do this is by analyzing the data we have and understanding how people use our Products.
To provide these services, we must collect and use some of your personal data.
The information we collect depend on how you use our Products and includes the following:
- Information and content you provide. We may review the content, communications and other information you provide when you use our Product, including when you complete your profile, create or share content. This can include information in or about the content you provide (like metadata), such as the location of a photo or the date a file was created.
- Data with special protections: You can choose to provide information in your profile. This and other information (such as racial or ethnic origin, philosophical beliefs or trade union membership) may be subject to special protections under the laws of your country.
We provide these services to you and others to help advance our mission. In exchange, we need you to make the following commitments:
- Who can use HeartsConnect
To help us effectively keep you connected with others in your group you must:
- Keep the same email you initially sign up with.
- Provide accurate information about yourself if you choose to share information.
- Not share your password, give access to your HeartsConnect account to others, or transfer your account to anyone else, without our permission and permission from others in the group.
You cannot use HeartsConnect if:
- You are under 13 years old.
- You are a convicted sex offender.
- We previously disabled your account for violations of our terms of service or policies.
- You are prohibited from receiving our products, services, or software under applicable guidelines and laws.
- What you can share and do on HeartsConnect
We want people to use HeartsConnect to express themselves and to share content that is important to them, but not at the expense of the safety and well-being of others or the integrity of their group. You therefore agree not to engage in the conduct described below (or to facilitate or support others in doing so):
- You may not use our Products to do or share anything:
- That violates these Terms, our policies, or other terms that may apply to your use of HeartsConnect.
- That is unlawful, misleading, discriminatory or fraudulent.
- That infringes or violates someone else's rights.
- You may not upload viruses or malicious code or do anything that could disable, overburden, or impair the proper working or appearance of our Product.
- You may not access or collect data from our Product using automated means (without our prior written permission) or attempt to access data you do not have permission to access.
We can remove content you share that violates these provisions and, if applicable, we may take action against your account. We may also disable your account if we become aware that you have infringed other people's intellectual property rights.
To help support these efforts, we encourage you to report content or conduct that you believe violates your rights or the rights of others or our terms and policies.
- The permissions you give us
We need certain permissions from you to provide our services:
- Permission to use content you create and share: You own the content you create and share on HeartsConnect, and nothing in these Terms takes away the rights you have to your own content. You are free to share your content with anyone else, wherever you want. To provide our services, though, you give us legal permissions to use that content.
- When you share, post, or upload content that is covered by intellectual property rights (like photos or videos) on or in connection with our Product, you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable permission to allow that property to be displayed on HeartConnect within your triad group. This means, for example, that if you share a photo on HeartsConnect, you give us permission to store, copy, and share it with others in your triad group and with employees and service providers that support our Product.
- You can end this license any time by deleting your content or account. You should know that, for technical reasons, content you delete may persist for a limited period of time in backup copies (though it will not be visible to other users). In addition, content you delete may continue to appear if you have shared it with others and they have not deleted it.
- Permission to update software you use or download: If you download or use our software, you give us permission to download and install upgrades, updates, and additional features to improve, enhance, and further develop it.
- Limits on using our intellectual property
If you use content protected by intellectual property rights that we have and make available in our Products (for example, images, designs, videos, or sounds we provide that you add to the content you create or share on HeartsConnect), we retain all rights to that content. You can only use our copyrights or trademarks with our prior written permission. You must obtain our written permission (or permission under an open source license) to modify, create derivative works of, decompile, or otherwise attempt to extract source code from us.
1. Updating our Terms
We work constantly to improve our services and develop new features to make our Products better for you and our community. As a result, we may need to update these Terms from time to time to accurately reflect our services and practices. Unless otherwise required by law, we will notify you before we make changes to these Terms and give you an opportunity to review them before they go into effect. Once any updated Terms are in effect, you will be bound by them if you continue to use our Products.
We hope that you will continue using our Product, but if you do not agree to our updated Terms and no longer want to be a part of HeartsConnect, you can decide to no longer contribute to the group.
2. Account suspension or termination
We want HeartsConnect to be a place where members of your group feel welcome and safe to express themselves and share their thoughts and ideas.
If we determine that you have violated our terms or policies, we may take action against your account to protect our services, including suspending access to your account or disabling it. We may also suspend or disable your account if you create risk or legal exposure for us or others in your triad group. If appropriate, we will notify you about your account the next time you try to access it. You can contact us to learn more about what you can do if your account has been disabled.
3. Limits on lLiability
We work hard to provide the best Products we can and to specify clear guidelines for everyone who uses them. Our Products, however, are provided "as is," and we make no guarantees that they always will be safe, secure, or error-free, or that they will function without disruptions, delays, or imperfections.
To the extent permitted by law, we also DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES, WHETHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, TITLE, AND NON-INFRINGEMENT. We do not control or direct what people and others do or say, and we are not responsible for their actions or conduct (whether onlin or offline) or any content they share (including offensive, inappropriate, obscene, unlawful, and other objectionable content).
We cannot predict when issues might arise with our Products. Accordingly, our liability shall be limited to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, and under no circumstance will we be liable to you for any lost profits, revenues, information, or data, or consequential, special, indirect, exemplary, punitive, or incidental damages arising out of or related to these Terms or the HeartsConnect Product.
We try to provide clear rules so that we can limit or hopefully avoid disputes between you and us. If a dispute does arise, however, it's useful to know up front where it can be resolved and what laws will apply.
For any claim, cause of action, or dispute you have against us that arises out of or relates to these Terms or the Products ("claim"), you agree that it will be resolved exclusively in the Utah Third District Court in Salt Lake County, Utah. You also agree to submit to the personal jurisdiction of this court for the purpose of litigating any such claim, and that the laws of the State of Utah will govern these Terms and any claim, without regard to conflict of law provisions.
- These Terms make up the entire agreement between you and HeartsConnect, LLC regarding your use of our Product. They supersede any prior agreements.
- If any portion of these Terms are found to be unenforceable, the remaining portion will remain in full force and effect. If we fail to enforce any of these Terms, it will not be considered a waiver. You will not claim that there has been any amendment to or waiver of these Terms unless the amendment or waiver is in writing and signed by us.
- You may not transfer any of your rights or obligations under these Terms to anyone else without our consent.
- You may designate a person to manage your account if the designation is in writing. Only a person who you have identified in a valid will or similar document expressing clear consent to disclose your content upon death or incapacity will be able to obtain access to your account after it is memorialized.
- We may need to change the username for your account in certain circumstances (for example, if someone else claims the username and it appears unrelated to the name you use in everyday life).
- We always appreciate your feedback and other suggestions about our product and services, but we may use them without any restriction or obligation to compensate you, and we are under no obligation to keep them confidential.
- We reserve all rights not expressly granted to you.