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<h1>Ongoing Communication</h1>
<h2>Between Tumblr and Missing e Developer, Jeremy Cutler</h2>
<p class="blurb">Below you will find the most recent email conversations between Tumblr staff and the developer of the <a href="/"><strong>Missing e</strong> browser extension / add-on</a>, Jeremy Cutler. These are made public in the interest of providing transparency in the ongoing discussion relating to the future of the browser extension.</p>
<div class="links">
<p>(09/02/2011) <a href="#1">Tumblr - Missing E issues &lt;Ari Shahdadi, Tumblr General Counsel&gt;</a></p>
<p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&rArr;&nbsp;(09/03/2011) <a href="#2">Re: Tumblr - Missing E issues &lt;Jeremy Cutler, Missing e Developer&gt;</a></p>
<p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&rArr;&nbsp;(09/09/2011) <a href="#3">Re: Tumblr - Missing E issues &lt;Jeremy Cutler, Missing e Developer&gt;</a></p>
<p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&rArr;&nbsp;(09/12/2011) <a href="#4">Re: Tumblr - Missing E issues &lt;Jeremy Cutler, Missing e Developer&gt;</a></p>
<p>&nbsp;&nbsp;&rArr;&nbsp;(09/19/2011) <a href="#5">Re: Tumblr - Missing E issues &lt;Jeremy Cutler, Missing e Developer&gt;</a></p>
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<div id="email1" class="email" title="09/02/2011 &lt;Ari Shahdadi&gt;">
<p><em>Ari Shahdadi<br />
Fri, Sep 2, 2011 at 16:30 EDT</em></p>
<p>Hello Jeremy,</p>
<p>As you previously discussed with our team, browser extensions that materially modify Tumblr's experience are currently forbidden by our Terms of Service and it is imperative that any such modifications follow Tumblr's Application Developer and API License Agreement.</p>
<p>Below are notes from one of our engineers with more clarification around specific violations of our policies by Missing E. Please let me know if you won't be able to comply with these requirements within the next 10 days.</p>
<blockquote>
<p><strong>1) "Dashboard Fixes", "Posting Fixes", "Ask Fixes"</strong><br />Representing the circumvention of intended UI and UX as "fixes" is a serious misrepresentation of Tumblr and our features. (3s)</p>
<p><strong>2) "Prevent the Tumblr dashboard from stalling all the time when the site isn't responsive"</strong><br />
This particular issue has been patched for several months. Re-implementing it is likely to cause further issues. (3d, 3s)
<p><strong>3) "Add a 'move to top of queue' button on queue posts"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists (with the alt-click action) and should not be re-implemented. (3d, 3s)</p>
<p><strong>4) "Add Tumblelog sidebars (follower count, messages, etc) to all dash pages"</strong><br />
Employs page scraping. (3l)</p>
<p><strong>5) "Make the 'Following' button on the dash take you directly to your list of followed Tumblrs"</strong><br />
This is in violation of Section 3m of Tumblr's Application Developer and API License Agreement.</p>
<p><strong>6) "Add a magnifying glass icon to all photo and photoset posts so you can see them in full size"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists. The ability for users to enlarge a photo can also be toggled by the post's author. Circumventing the author's restrictions is certainly prohibited. Advertising this as added functionality is also misleading. (3d, 3s)</p>
<p><strong>7) "Quick (1-click) reblogging. Reblog posts without leaving the dash"</strong><br />
This feature is currently using form hijacking to create posts. This should be removed or changed to use Tumblr's API. (3l, 3n, 3o)</p>
<p><strong>8) "Always reblog long text posts as text (instead of link posts that cut the post off)"</strong><br />
This is in violation of Section 3m of Tumblr's Application Developer and API License Agreement.</p>
<p><strong>9) "Add Queue/Draft/Private buttons when answering ask posts"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists (with the alt-click action) and should not be re-implemented. (3d)</p>
<p><strong>10) "Enable selecting and mass deletion of unanswered asks an messages"</strong><br />
This feature is currently using form hijacking to delete posts. This must removed or changed to use Tumblr's API. (3l, 3n)</p>
<p><strong>11) "Allow inline image uploading for all post types (not just text posts)"</strong><br />
This feature is using primitive referrer spoofing to circumvent Tumblr's built in restrictions. (3l, 3n)</p>
</blockquote>
<p>Thanks,<br />Ari</p>
<p>Ari Shahdadi<br />General Counsel<br />Tumblr, Inc.</p>
</div>
<div id="email2" class="email yellow emailright" title="09/03/2011 &lt;Jeremy Cutler&gt;">
<p><em>Jeremy Cutler<br />
Sat, Sep 3, 2011 at 21:49 EDT</em><br />
To: &lt;Ari Shahdadi, Tumblr General Counsel&gt;</p>
<p>Ari,</p>
<p>I appreciate the information you have provided. It will enable me to make some required changes to the Missing e browser extension in order to remove any possibility of misleading users regarding Tumblr services.</p>
<p>In speaking to the development team, I did indicate that Missing e, by virtue of not interacting with the Tumblr API in any way, is not bound by the Tumblr API License Agreement. As set out in section 1a of this agreement, the Licensed Materials include the API interface, information related to blogs and websites hosted by Tumblr, individual posts made on Tumblr blogs, Tumblr user information and any other content made available through the Tumblr API.</p>
<p>Instead, Missing e is implemented on top of a web browser. The web browser collects all of these Licensed Materials through normal browsing. Missing e only interacts with the document model in the browser's system memory and can instruct the web browser to interact with the Tumblr website with the explicit permission of the user. Missing e, itself, performs no such interaction. The ownership and fair use of documents already in a browser's memory, as well as any client-side code included in that document, is rather untested legal ground. Indications are that the prevailing legal opinion is that users are allowed to view websites (once they've been loaded into their browser's memory) in any way they wish, including manipulating the site's document model, so long as the underlying code (as visible with a browser's "View Source" feature) is not modified.</p>
<p>That being said, violation of the Tumblr API License Agreement gives Tumblr the ability to terminate the license provided to a Licensed application, as granted by the providing of an API Key. There is no provision of this agreement that allows Tumblr the option to delete the user account of a Licensee. I do not have any arguments against my license being revoked and my API Key being rendered null and void.</p>
<p>The Terms of Service does not seem to have any provisions that indicate that making available an extension that can enable automation of certain actions on the Tumblr website (that are all possible manually) constitutes ground for account deletion. This also seems to be the case in the Content Policy document. However, that document does give Tumblr the option to "terminate accounts and block addresses of those who attempt unauthorized use of Tumblr.com." Whether Tumblr considers the ability given by Missing e to automate certain actions to be unauthorized is a secondary point. It appears as though your intention is to use policies not related to the API in order to quash development that cannot be prevented by the API Agreement's option of blocking an API Key.</p>
<p>In the possible event that I choose not to stop distributing Missing e, what exact provisions of Tumblr's policies will be used as a basis for deleting my personal account and its associated blogs? Please let me know what grounds Tumblr has to delete my account based, ostensibly, on violations of the Tumblr API License Agreement.</p>
<p>If you are able, please provide this information within the window of 10 days you have given for me to comply with the requirements or halt distribution. I should like the opportunity, if I choose, to pass this information on to legal counsel.</p>
<p>Also, as I received your note close to the end of business on Friday, September 2, 2011, it is my understanding that this deadline of 10 (business) days leaves me until the end of business on Monday, September 19, 2011 to comply. If this timeline is not what you intend, please let me know as soon as possible.</p>
<p>Please find below responses to the list of issues you provided. This information is given with the understanding that I only wish to explain how these features work within the browser. Please note that in making these responses, I am not at all implying that I agree with the interpretation that restrictions of the Tumblr API License Agreement should be enforced via the punitive action of deleting user accounts under the Tumblr Terms of Service or Content Policy. I simply wish to help clarify your development team's understanding of Missing e issues.</p>
<p>Jeremy</p>
<hr />
<blockquote><p><strong>1) "Dashboard Fixes", "Posting Fixes", "Ask Fixes"</strong><br />
Representing the circumvention of intended UI and UX as "fixes" is a serious misrepresentation of Tumblr and our features. (3s)</p></blockquote>
<p>In order to comply with the spirit of this requirement, I will change the name of these features to "Dashboard Tweaks", "Posting Tweaks" and "Ask Tweaks", respectively.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>2) "Prevent the Tumblr dashboard from stalling all the time when the site isn't responsive"</strong><br />
This particular issue has been patched for several months. Re-implementing it is likely to cause further issues. (3d, 3s)</p></blockquote>
<p>This feature was added to handle the issue of error pages Tumblr returned with a HTTP 200 status. If this issue is fixed on your end (I assume by not returning error pages without error codes), then this feature will be removed. However, this was never a "substantial replication" of Tumblr services as it was intended to handle an oversight that is no longer being made. It did not duplicate any client side code.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>3) "Add a 'move to top of queue' button on queue posts"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists (with the alt-click action) and should not be re-implemented. (3d, 3s)</p></blockquote>
<p>I, like many users, are not aware that this alt-click option exists. You would do well to inform your users that it exists. Although, I hardly hall this a "substantial replication", I recognize that additional code to support this option is not required and will make sure users are aware of the built-in option.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>4) "Add Tumblelog sidebars (follower count, messages, etc) to all dash pages"</strong><br />
Employs page scraping. (3l)</p></blockquote>
<p>A single page AJAX load is not a significant source of page scraping. However, I agree that this can be considered a violation of section 3l of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>5) "Make the 'Following' button on the dash take you directly to your list of followed Tumblrs"</strong><br />
This is in violation of Section 3m of Tumblr's Application Developer and API License Agreement.</p></blockquote>
<p>I agree that this can be considered a violation of section 3m of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>6) "Add a magnifying glass icon to all photo and photoset posts so you can see them in full size"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists. The ability for users to enlarge a photo can also be toggled by the post's author. Circumventing the author's restrictions is certainly prohibited. Advertising this as added functionality is also misleading. (3d, 3s)</p></blockquote>
<p>This feature exists in only a partial form. One is able to magnify photosets, but can only magnify photos to their largest size in only specific circumstances. For example, if the post's author specifies a click-through link for the image, one cannot magnify the image using Tumblr's built-in feature, whether or not the post's author had any intention of preventing that ability. The option whether to show full size photos on posts in the dashboard is not configurable by the post's author. In order to meet your requirement regarding the misleading nature of referring to this as an added feature, I will rework the documentation to indicate that it is simply an alternative to an existing built-in feature.</p>
<p>This can be considered a "substantial replication" pursuant to section 3d of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>7) "Quick (1-click) reblogging. Reblog posts without leaving the dash"</strong><br />
This feature is currently using form hijacking to create posts. This should be removed or changed to use Tumblr's API. (3l, 3n, 3o)</p></blockquote>
<p>The term "form hijacking" is used to refer to using automation for the purpose of allowing a (possibly unauthorized) user to send unauthorized data using a site's form submission--usually for the purpose of spamming. Missing e's quick reblogging feature allows Tumblr users to reblog posts, while saving the step of actually opening a reblog page and submitting there. To label this as "form hijacking" and not simply automated form submission suggests that either Tumblr considers users of Missing e's quick reblogging feature to be unauthorized, or any reblogs they perform with this feature to be unauthorized. I trust that you do not believe that this is the case.</p>
<p>This feature can be considered a violation of section 3l of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<p>This feature can be considered a violation of section 3n of the Tumblr API License Agreement in so much as it modifies the functionality of the reblogging process. However, it does not translate, reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or derive source code, underlying ideas, algorithms, structure or organizational form from the Tumblr Services or the Licensed Materials, nor does it defeat, avoid, bypass, remove, deactivate or otherwise circumvent any protection mechanisms for the Tumblr Services or the Licensed Materials, nor does remove or modify any proprietary notices, attribution or marks from or delivered as part of the Tumblr Services or the Licensed Materials. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<p>There is nothing to indicate that the quick reblogging feature is a violation of section 3o of the Tumblr API License Agreement. A user must activate the quick reblogging feature manually, and then must click the reblog button or quick reblog menu in order to reblog a post. Completing this process undeniably reflects an "explicit, genuine expression of user intent and permission".</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>8) "Always reblog long text posts as text (instead of link posts that cut the post off)"</strong><br />
This is in violation of Section 3m of Tumblr's Application Developer and API License Agreement.</p></blockquote>
<p>Adjusting the interface such that reblogging text posts automatically go to the "reblog as text" page is a modification of the Tumblr default behaviour of initially presenting the option of reblogging longer text posts as links (with truncated body text). This feature can be considered a violation of section 3m of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>9) "Add Queue/Draft/Private buttons when answering ask posts"</strong><br />
This functionality already exists (with the alt-click action) and should not be re-implemented. (3d)</p></blockquote>
<p>This functionality only exists partially. Using the alt-click action, one can only answer asks as Queue/Draft but not as Private posts.</p>
<p>Although this is not a "substantial replication" of an existing feature, it can be seen as a violation of section 3d of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>10) "Enable selecting and mass deletion of unanswered asks an messages"</strong><br />
This feature is currently using form hijacking to delete posts. This must removed or changed to use Tumblr's API. (3l, 3n)</p></blockquote>
<p>The term "form hijacking" is used to refer to using automation for the purpose of allowing a (possibly unauthorized) user to send unauthorized data using a site's form submission--usually for the purpose of spamming. Missing e's mass deletion features allow Tumblr users to remove multiple ask posts from their inbox, while saving the multiple steps of clicking on each individual delete button. To label this as "form hijacking" and not simply automated form submission suggests that either Tumblr considers users of Missing e's mass delete features to be unauthorized, or any deleting of messages they perform with this feature to be unauthorized. I trust that you do not believe that this is the case.</p>
<p>This feature can be considered a violation of section 3l of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
<p>This feature, however, cannot be considered a violation of section 3n of the Tumblr API License Agreement. It does not in any way interfere with, modify or disable any features or functionality, nor does it translate, reverse engineer, decompile, disassemble or derive source code, underlying ideas, algorithms, structure or organizational form, nor defeat, avoid, bypass, remove, deactivate or otherwise circumvent any protection mechanisms, nor remove or modify any proprietary notices, attribution or marks from or delivered as part of the Tumblr Services or the Licensed Materials. It simply executes existing client-side code already loaded into a user's browser.</p>
<blockquote><p><strong>11) "Allow inline image uploading for all post types (not just text posts)"</strong><br />
This feature is using primitive referrer spoofing to circumvent Tumblr's built in restrictions. (3l, 3n)</p></blockquote>
<p>Referrer spoofing is used to refer to the sending of incorrect referrer information in an HTTP request in order to prevent a website from obtaining accurate data on the identity of the web page previously visited by the user. This Missing e feature uses an inline frame to load a form (from within the browser extension itself) that submits image data to a handling script on Tumblr which can, in turn, pass the processing information to the main post document. This is a technique for making the process of loading the image upload page within the extension directly, submitting the form, collecting the processed information and manually adding it to the main post document. In no way does the browser extension misrepresent, modify or hide referrer information. Many of the Missing e features are meant to facilitate the automation of actions a user could perform manually with multiple, less convenient steps.</p>
<p>However, it can be considered a violation of section 3l of the Tumblr API License Agreement. Please see above note regarding API License Agreement violations.</p>
</div>
<div id="email3" class="email yellow emailright" title="09/09/2011 &lt;Jeremy Cutler&gt;">
<p><em>Jeremy Cutler<br />
Fri, Sep 9, 2011 at 15:53 EDT</em><br />
To: &lt;Ari Shahdadi, Tumblr General Counsel&gt;</p>
<p>Ari,</p>
<p>I have yet to receive a response to my last e-mail. I understand if there needs to be an internal discussion before you are able to get back to me. However, I do need to confirm with you that the deadline of 10 days that you specified does indeed expire at end of business on Monday, September 19 (10 business days from your initial message at the end of business on Friday, September 2).</p>
<p>Please get back to me as soon as possible.</p>
<p>----<br />
Jeremy Cutler</p>
</div>
<div id="email4" class="email yellow emailright" title="09/12/2011 &lt;Jeremy Cutler&gt;">
<p><em>Jeremy Cutler<br />
Mon, Sep 12, 2011 at 15:54 EDT</em><br />
To: &lt;Ari Shahdadi, Tumblr General Counsel&gt;<br />
CC: &lt;Derek Gottfrid, Tumblr API Lead&gt;</p>
<p>Ari,</p>
<p>As I have not received a response in the last 9 days, I will continue under the assumption that the 10 day deadline you specified does expire on September 19 (10 business days from your initial message at the end of business on Friday, September 2).</p>
<p>Before that deadline, I would appreciate a reply to my query regarding the exact provisions of Tumblr's policies which will be used as a basis for deleting my personal account and its associated blogs for what are, ostensibly, violations of the Tumblr API License Agreement (rather than the API License Agreement option of rendering my API key null and void). I trust that you will be able to provide this information to me before the September 19 deadline. I should like the opportunity to pass this information on to legal counsel in a timely manner.</p>
<p>----<br />
Jeremy Cutler</p>
</div>
<div id="email5" class="email yellow emailright" title="09/19/2011 &lt;Jeremy Cutler&gt;">
<p><em>Jeremy Cutler<br />
Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 13:46 EDT</em><br />
To: &lt;Ari Shahdadi, Tumblr General Counsel&gt;<br />
CC: &lt;Derek Gottfrid, Tumblr API Lead&gt;</p>
<p>Ari,</p>
<p>I have not, as yet, received a response to my emails of 09/03, 09/09 and 09/12 in reply to your original request to comply with requirements listed by your engineering team (received at end of business on 09/02).</p>
<p>In my replies, I clarified what I believe are misconceptions regarding Missing e held by your development team. I also committed to (and have followed through on) making changes to Missing e in order to prevent any possible misleading of its users as to the availability and content of functions in the Tumblr interface, as well as to remove features that duplicated but did not add functionality to existing Tumblr interface features.</p>
<p>In my responses, I attempted to make clear that Missing e does not interact with Tumblr's Licensed Materials. As a browser extension, it merely adjusts how a user's browser displays content already in the browser's document model and instructs the browser to automatically perform actions that are otherwise possible for a user to do, manually. I also expressed significant concerns regarding your team's communication to me that they would opt to delete my personal account (and its associated blogs) if I did not comply with the requirements set out or stop distribution altogether. Although I continue to stand by my explanation that the Tumblr API License Agreement does not apply to Missing e, I am nonetheless confident that said agreement does not provide the option for violations to be met with personal account deletion.</p>
<p>I asked for clarification regarding what sections or provisions in Tumblr's policies would be used as grounds for deleting my account. I requested this information so that I may avail myself of the opportunity to consult legal counsel.</p>
<p>As your initial communication of September 2 solely indicates that I should contact you within 10 days (as mentioned in previous communications, I have assumed this to mean 10 business days) should I not be able to comply with the requirements you forwarded to me and with the understanding that you did not indicate in any way that you would claim a compliance failure as actionable, nor did you inform me (implicitly or explicitly) in the aforementioned communication that account deletion would follow such a failure, I hereby inform you that I will not be able to comply with your requirements before today's (09/19/2011) deadline.</p>
<p>If I have made any errors in interpreting your intentions, I would appreciate being informed in a timely manner. Account deletion, should you choose to pursue that punitive action, should follow an explicit communication from Tumblr informing me of the specific section of your policies being used as grounds for deletion, while providing the requisite 72 hours for correction, as per the Tumblr Content Policy document.</p>
<p>I understand that decisions of this nature cannot be made by individual team members and may require discussion on your end. However, I hope that you feel, like me, that two weeks is ample time to prepare a response.</p>
<p>I look forward to hearing from you.</p>
<p>----<br />
Jeremy Cutler</p>
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