Content and Conduct Policy
Updated as of August 23, 2021
We are committed to free expression, and we believe everyone is best served when everyone has a voice. We believe a rich diversity of viewpoints and experiences enriches our entire community. In order to protect the experience and safety of our users, however, there are some limitations on the type of content and behavior that we allow.
In particular, we recognize that abuse can happen, and it can happen to some groups disproportionately, especially when based on sex, sexuality, color, or targeted at marginalized or historically underrepresented groups. We are committed to combating abusive conduct, particularly when motived by hatred, prejudice or intolerance, particularly abuse that seeks to silence the voices of those who have been historically marginalized.
If you see something on Skout that you believe violates our policies, please report it to us.
This Content and Conduct Policy is part of our Terms of Service.
Content and Conduct Guidelines
- Adult Content. You may not post or stream adult Content, which we consider to be any media that is pornographic and/or may be intended to cause sexual arousal. Some specific examples include, but are not limited to:
- full or partial nudity, including close-ups (whether or not clothed) of genitals, buttocks, or breasts – they should not be the most prominent thing in any photo or screen;
- “testing the line” with nudity, such as too much cleavage, shorts that are too low, thongs, clothes are too tight, or clothes that are too sheer;
- obscene or dirty gestures (including the middle finger);
- simulating a sexual act; and
- intercourse or any other sexual act, involving humans, depictions of animals with human-like features, cartoons, hentai or anime.
Graphic Violence. You may not post or stream graphically violent or gratuitously gory Content, which we consider any media that depicts death, violence, surgical procedures or serious injury to humans or animals in graphic detail. Some specific examples include, but are not limited to:
- gruesome crime or accident scenes;
- physical altercations;
- bodily fluids including blood, feces, semen etc.;
- exposed internal organs or bones;
- serious bodily harm, including visible wounds, broken bones etc.;
- animal torture or killing; and
- severely injured or mutilated animals
Dangerous Activities or Products. You may not post or stream Content that depicts dangerous activities or products. Some specific examples include, but are not limited to:
- promotion of self-harm, suicide, eating disorders, or other acts where serious injury or death may result;
- dangerous “dares,” games, battles or contests;
- dangerous controlled substances; and
- streaming while driving any sort of vehicle (including bikes).
Illegal or Regulated Goods and Services. You may not post or stream Content depicting illegal or regulated goods and services. Some specific examples include, but are not limited to:
- counterfeit goods and services;
- human trafficking;
- drugs (including marijuana) and drug paraphernalia;
- financial instruments or services;
- products made from endangered or protected species;
- prostitution or sexual services;
- stolen goods; and
- weapons, including firearms, ammunition, and explosives, and instructions on making weapons (e.g. bombs, 3D printed guns, etc.).
- Unlawful Use. You may not use Skout for any unlawful purposes or to further illegal activities. By using Skout, you agree to comply with all applicable laws governing your online conduct and content.
- Intellectual Property. You may not post or stream Content that you do not have a right to make available, or that infringes any patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright, privacy, or other proprietary rights of any party.
- Unauthorized Use. You may not post or stream another’s voice or image without their permission. Accordingly, you may not post or stream any recordings or images of another person that were produced or distributed without their permission.
- Private Information. You may not post or stream another person’s private information without their permission, including photos, videos, and personally identifiable information, nor may you threaten to do so or encourage others to do so.
- Spam and Security. You may not use Skout for the purpose of spamming anyone. You may not register accounts or post Content automatically, systematically, or programmatically. You may not upload or transmit software viruses, malware, or any other harmful computer code, files or programs, or use any data mining, robots, or similar data gathering or extraction methods. You may not disrupt or impose an unreasonable burden on Skout (or another person’s use of Skout) or networks connected to Skout, or breach or attempt to breach the security of Skout.
- Advertising. You may not post or stream any unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, promotional materials, spam, chain letters, pyramid schemes or any other form of solicitation, or offer any unauthorized contest, giveaway, or sweepstakes.
- Impersonation. You may not impersonate individuals, groups, or organizations in a manner that is intended to or does mislead, confuse, or deceive others.
- Violence and Physical Harm. You may not make specific threats of violence or wish for the serious physical harm, death, or disease of an individual or group of people. This includes, but is not limited to, threatening or promoting terrorism. You may not promote or encourage suicide or self-harm.
- Minors. You may not post or stream Content that contains minors (below the age of 18), nor may you allow minors to appear in your stream. This applies even if they are your children or you otherwise have permission to do so.
Child Endangerment or Sexual Exploitation. You may not post or stream Content that sexualizes minors (below the age of 18) or that promotes or glorifies child sexual exploitation. Examples of content that depicts or promotes child sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:
- Visual depiction of a minor engaging in sexually explicit or sexually suggestive act;
- Illustrated, computer-generated or other forms of depictions of a minor in a sexually explicit context, or engaged in a sexually explicit act; and
- Links to third-party sites that host child sexual exploitation material.
- Fantasizing about or promoting engagement in child sexual exploitation;
- Expressing a desire to obtain materials that feature child sexual exploitation;
- Recruiting, advertising or expressing interest in: (1) a commercial sex act involving a child, or (2) in harboring and/or transporting a child for sexual purposes;
- Engaging a minor in a sexually explicit conversation; and
- Identifying alleged victims of childhood sexual exploitation by name or photo
Abusive Conduct. You may not harass another person or incite other people to do so. We consider abusive behavior any attempt to harass, intimidate, silence someone else’s voice. You may not direct abuse at someone by sending unwanted sexual content, objectifying them in a sexually explicit manner, or otherwise engaging in sexual misconduct. You may not post or stream Content that exploits others (including extortion, blackmail, etc.), humiliates or harasses someone publicly, or harasses victims (or their friends and families) of a tragic event. Context matters when evaluating for abusive behavior and determining appropriate enforcement actions. Factors we may take into consideration include, but are not limited to whether:
- The behavior is targeted at an individual or group of people; and
- The report has been filed by the target of the abuse or a bystander.
Hateful Conduct and Bullying. You may not promote violence against, threaten, or harass other people on the basis of race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, disability, serious disease, veteran status, or any other characteristic associated with systemic discrimination or marginalization. You may not use hateful images or symbols in your profile image or profile header. You also may not use your username, display name, or profile bio to engage in abusive behavior, such as targeted harassment or expressing hate towards a person, group, or protected category. Some Content may appear to be hateful when viewed in isolation, but may not be when viewed in the context of a larger conversation. For example, members of a protected category may refer to each other using terms that are typically considered as slurs. When used consensually, the intent behind these terms is not abusive, but a means to reclaim terms that were historically used to demean individuals. You do not need to be member of a target group for us to take action. We do not ask people to prove or disprove membership in any protected category and we will not investigate this information. Conduct that we consider hateful included, but is not limited to:
- Violent Threats. You may not make violent threats against an identifiable target. Violent threats are declarative statements of intent to inflict injuries that would result in serious and lasting bodily harm, where an individual could die or be significantly injured, e.g., “I will kill you.” We have a zero tolerance policy against violent threats. Those deemed to be making violent threats will face immediate and permanent suspension of their account.
Wishing, Hoping or Calling for Serious Harm on a Person or Group of People. You may not post or stream Content that wishes, hopes, promotes, or expresses a desire for death, serious and lasting bodily harm, or serious disease against on a person or group persons. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Hoping that someone dies as a result of a serious disease, e.g., “I hope you get cancer and die”;
- Wishing for someone to fall victim to a serious accident, e.g., “I wish that you would get run over by a car next time you run your mouth”; and
- Saying that a group of individuals deserve serious physical injury, e.g., “If this group of protesters don’t shut up, they deserve to be shot.”
Mass Murder, Violent Events, or Specific Means of Violence. You may not post or stream Content that promotes mass murder, violent events, or specific means of violence on a person or group persons. This includes, but is not limited to sending someone:
- Content that depicts victims of the Holocaust; and
- Content that depicts lynchings.
- Inciting Fear About a Group of People. You may not target individuals with Content intended to incite fear or spread fearful stereotypes about a group of people, including asserting that members of a group are more likely to take part in dangerous or illegal activities, e.g., “all [religious group] are terrorists.”
- Repeated and/or Non-consensual Slurs, Epithets, Racist and Sexist Tropes, or Other Degrading Content. You may not target individuals with repeated slurs, tropes or other content that intends to dehumanize, degrade or reinforce negative or harmful stereotypes about a protected category. This includes targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals.
Hateful imagery. You may not post or stream logos, symbols, or images whose purpose is to promote hostility and malice against others based on their race, religion, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, disability, serious disease, veteran status, or any other characteristic associated with systemic discrimination or marginalization. Some examples of hateful imagery include, but are not limited to:
- Symbols historically associated with hate groups, e.g., the Nazi swastika;
- Images depicting others as less than human, or altered to include hateful symbols, e.g., altering images of individuals to include animalistic features; and
- Images altered to include hateful symbols or references to a mass murder that targeted a protected category, e.g., manipulating images of individuals to include yellow Star of David badges, in reference to the Holocaust.
These guidelines are not exhaustive, and we have the right to make all judgments regarding the applicability of these guidelines – in letter or in spirit – in our sole and absolute discretion.
Consequences of Violating the Content and Conduct Policy
We impose a variety of penalties for violating our Content and Conduct Policy, including Content removal, warnings, account suspensions of increasing duration, account removals from the Skout platform, and notifying law enforcement and appropriate law enforcement agencies. We strive to encourage adherence to these guidelines through education, and we try to provide explanations for our decisions whenever possible. When determining the penalty, we consider a number of factors including, but not limited to the severity of the violation and an individual’s previous record of violations. Nevertheless, if an account is engaging primarily in abusive behavior, is engaging in extremely offensive speech or behavior, or is deemed to have shared a violent threat, we may permanently suspend it upon initial review. When we are made aware of Content depicting or promoting child sexual exploitation we remove it from Skout without further notice and report it to The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC).