Terms of Service

These terms govern the use and services of Grassrooter Inc., a Delaware corporation.  By using Grassrooter.co, users agree to be bound by these Terms of Service, Grassrooter’s Privacy Policy, as well as any and all other conditions or policies referenced on Grassrooter.co and third party websites to which Grassrooter.co links, such as its payment processors.  Grassrooter may amend these Terms of Service at any time by posting a revision.

Eligibility of Users

Project creators (“Rooters”) and their funders (“Seeders”) must be legal residents of the United States to use Grassrooter.co.  Users who are younger than 13 years old are ineligible to use Grassrooter.co.  Users between 14 and 17 may use Grassrooter with the consent and supervision of a parent or legal guardian, provided that such person also agrees to be bound by these Terms of Service and all other conditions or policies referenced on Grassrooter.co and third party websites to which it links.

Grassrooter reserves all rights to reject or suspend users and to suspend, reject, interrupt, and/or remove any campaign, contribution, or content at any time and for any reason without liability.

Each user, whether a Rooter or Seeder, represents that the information it submits to Grassrooter is accurate and truthful.

All users also agree to provide any information that Grassrooter requests to verify their identity.

About Grassrooter

Grassrooter is an online crowdfunding community for people to raise funds for their campaigns and to fund the campaigns of others.  Rooters can offer gifts or rewards in the form of tangible items or intangible services (collectively, “Rewards”) to Seeders.  Rewards are not offered for sale.

Grassrooter makes no representations about the quality, safety, morality, or legality of any campaign, Reward, or contribution or the truth or accuracy of content posted on Grassrooter.co.

Grassrooter does not represent that Rooters will deliver Rewards or that contributions will be used as described in the campaign.  Users use Grassrooter.co at their own risk.

Grassrooter Inc. does not support the offer or sale of securities (as such term is defined in the Securities Act of 1933) on Grassrooter.co, and Grassrooter Inc. is not a broker-dealer or a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

Communication Guidelines

Grassrooter depends upon a healthy and constructive dialogue within the Grassrooter community.  Indeed, Grassrooter is a diverse community of people of all persuasions.  Accordingly, Grassrooter does not tolerate hatred, harassment, disrespect, trolling, or other meanness toward users.

Further, Grassrooter does not tolerate the following:

  • Use of Grassrooter to degrade, subjugate, or discriminate against another or a group, product, or service for any reason or on any basis;
  • Posting of  explicit images or videos;
  • Spamming specific users or comments sections with unauthorized content, such as promotions of unsponsored goods and services, junk mail, or spam;
  • Engaging in activity that disrupts or unreasonably burdens the operation of Grassrooter;
  • Attempting to reverse engineer the software or code of Grassrooter;
  • Running any auto-responder or spam operation on Grassrooter;
  • Using any software or other mechanism to “crawl” or “spider” Grassrooter;
  • Bypassing the security or verification procedures created by Grassrooter and its third party payment processors;
  • Sponsoring products created by others as your own creation; or
  • Offering another’s products for resale.

Grassrooter reserves the right to interrupt, suspend, and ban any non-compliant campaigns and users at any time.

Prohibited Campaigns

Grassrooter depends on committed and conscientious Rooters to make the Grassrooter community a success.  Rooters agree to raise funds only for campaigns that comply with all applicable laws and regulations.  Rooters are solely responsible for ensuring this compliance, and Grassrooter specifically disclaims any liability for noncompliant campaigns.

Additionally, Rooters may not:

  • Make false or misleading statements concerning their campaigns;
  • Use threatening, libelous, abusive, defamatory, or similarly derogatory content in their campaigns;
  • Publish any Personal Information of another in their campaigns or elsewhere;
  • Impersonate another person or entity in their campaigns;
  • Fundraise for a charity;
  • Infringe any patent, trademark, copyright, or other intellectual property in their campaigns; or
  • Raise funds for any political party or organization or use any such funds to lobby any public or elected official.

Prohibited Rewards

Grassrooter encourages Rooters to offer legitimate, bona fide rewards to users.  Indeed, studies have shown that rewards generally improve the prospects of crowdfunding campaigns.

Rooters are not permitted to offer any of the following as Rewards:

  • Any form of security, as defined by the Securities Act;
  • Any form of financial incentive or profit-sharing;
  • Any form of alcohol or incentive program related to the same;
  • Any controlled substance or related paraphernalia;
  • Any weapons, ammunition, or accessories;
  • Any form of lottery or gambling;
  • Any form of human remains;
  • Any form of air transportation;
  • Any item promoting hate, discrimination, personal injury, or destruction; or
  • Any item that infringes upon another’s patent, trademark, copyright, or other intellectual property.

Of course, a lot of this is common sense.  Grassrooter asks Rooters to use their judgment when creating and submitting their campaigns for review by Grassrooter.

Other Prohibited Content

Rooters and Seeders may not utilize Grassrooter’s branding or images in a way that communicates or implies Grassrooter’s endorsement, sponsorship, or support for any campaign, message, or idea hosted on Grassrooter.co.

Likewise, Rooters and Seeders may not utilize Grassrooter’s branding or images in such a way to create any item that could be interpreted to have been created by Grassrooter.

Of course, Rooters and Seeders may use any Grassrooter branding, logo, or images that are integrated with Grassrooter’s social media platforms for the purpose of reaching out to others via social media and other media.

Duties of Rooters

Rooters may offer Rewards to the Grassrooter community.  Such Rooters are legally bound to deliver any Rewards and fulfill any other promise to community members.

If a Rooter cannot fulfill its promises and/or deliver Rewards, the Rooter must work with its Seeders to achieve a mutually satisfactory resolution.  If a Rooter fails to fulfill its campaign obligations, the Rooter may be suspended or removed from the Grassrooter community, and Grassrooter may seek reimbursement from the Rooter of any funds raised and fees paid, and any such funds and fees may be remitted to affected Seeders.

Rooters must respond promptly and truthfully to any question posed by them by Grassrooter, any Seeder, or any other user.

When creating a campaign, the Rooter must identify its location (i.e. legal residence) as part of the registration process.  At this time, Grassrooter.co only hosts campaigns sponsored by a legal resident of the United States.  By creating a campaign and connecting to Grassrooter’s payment processor, Stripe, Rooters specifically agree to Stripe’s policies and associated user agreeements.  Rooters agree to provide both Grassrooter and Stripe accurate personal information, and you specifically authorize Grassrooter and Stripe to share such information to verify your identity and ensure compliance with these policies.  Grassrooter does not accept any responsibility for Stripe’s performance or the performance of any other third party processing service.

Rooters further agree to comply with all applicable laws and regulations when creating their campaigns, collecting funds, and delivering Rewards.  Rooters are responsible for collecting and remitting any applicable taxes in connection with contributions and Rewards.  Additionally, Rooters warrant that any content they post on Grassrooter.co does not infringe any copyright, trademark, patent, or any other intellectual property right, or any other right attaching to privacy and confidentiality.  Rooters further grant a royalty-free license to Grassrooter to use the content they post online in perpetuity.

Grassrooter reserves the right to delay, withhold, or reverse any contributions if Grassrooter is unable to verify the identity and other information of a Rooter.  Rooters acknowledge that if they do not act in accordance with Grassrooter’s policies, Grassrooter may obtain reimbursement of any amounts owed by a Rooter to Grassrooter by holding funds from your campaign, or from the connected Stripe or bank account associated with your campaign, or by seeking reimbursement from the Rooter by any other lawful means.

Rooters acknowledge that if they do not act in accordance with Grassrooter’s Terms of Service, Grassrooter may seek reimbursement of any amounts owed by a Rooter to Grassrooter by any lawful means, including but not limited to withholding of disbursements to you as the Rooter.

Rooters agree to Grassrooter’s platform fee of 4.75%, as well as fees levied by Grassrooter’s payment processors, such as Stripe.

Duties of Seeders

Seeders are solely responsible for asking questions and examining Rooters and their campaigns to the extent they feel is necessary before making a contribution.  All contributions are made voluntarily and at the sole discretion and risk of the Seeder.

Seeders are solely responsible for entering their shipping information during the checkout process.  Failure to do so vitiates the Rooter’s duty to deliver Rewards to the Seeder.  Of course, the Rooter, in its sole discretion, may contact the Seeder to arrange delivery.

Grassrooter does not guarantee that contributions will be used as promised, that Rooters will deliver Rewards, or that the campaign will achieve its goals.  Grassrooter does not endorse, guarantee, make representations, or provide warranties for or about the quality, safety, morality, or legality of any campaign, Reward, or contribution, or the truth or accuracy of content posted by users on Grassrooter.  Seeders are solely responsible for determining how to treat their contributions and receipt of any Rewards for tax purposes. If a contribution is returned to a Seeder, the associated Rewards, if any, shall be cancelled.

Disputes Between Rooters and Seeders

Rooters must perform on any promise to users and Seeders, including the delivery of Rewards.  If the Rooter cannot fulfill its commitments to users and Seeders, including delivery of Rewards, the Rooter must work with Seeders to reach a resolution, which may include refunds.  If Grassrooter has already disbursed funds to a Rooter, it is the Rooter’s responsibility to issue refunds.

Grassrooter does not have any obligation to get involved in any disputes between Rooters and Seeders, or any user and a third party.  In the event of any dispute, Grassrooter reserves the right to provide the Rooter’s contact information to the Seeder so the parties may attempt to resolve their dispute.

Other Disputes

On occasion, Grassrooter’s payment processors may hold contributions in abeyance for further review.  Grassrooter may hold funds from a campaign to reimburse Grassrooter for any amounts owed to it by a Rooter.

Reservation of Rights

In addition to those rights reserved elsewhere on Grassrooter.co, Grassrooter specifically reserves the right (1) to amend these Terms of Service and make changes to Grassrooter.co without notice or liability, (2) interrupt, suspend, or cancel any project at any time and for any reason, and (3) suspend, terminate, or ban any user at any time and for any reason.

Indemnification

Each user, including but not limited to Rooters and Seeders, agrees to defend, indemnify, and hold harmless Grassrooter and any of its subsidiaries and affiliated companies, and their officers, directors, employees, contractors, and agents from and against any and all claims, causes of action, damages, obligations, losses, liabilities, costs or debt, and expenses (including attorneys’ fees and costs) and all amounts paid in settlement arising from or relating to use of the use of Grassrooter.co, breach of these Terms of Service or any other Grassrooter policy, or violation of any laws or regulations.  Grassrooter may assume the exclusive defense and control of any matter for which users have agreed to indemnify Grassrooter, and each user agrees to assist and cooperate with Grassrooter in the defense or settlement of any such matters.

Limitations of Liability and Disclaimer of Any Warranties

Grassrooter, including its affiliates, directors, officers, employees, agents, subcontractors, and licensors, is not liable for any indirect, punitive, special, consequential, or exemplary damages or, in any event, for damages exceeding the lesser of $100.00 USD or the transaction fees paid to Grassrooter for the transaction or campaign from which a cause of action arose.

This limitation of liability applies whether the liability alleged is based on contract, tort, strict liability, or any other basis, even if Grassrooter has been advised of the possibility of such damage and the extent of such damage under applicable law.

For jurisdictions that do not allow Grassrooter to limit its liability: Notwithstanding any provision of the Terms of Service, for users in a jurisdiction that has provisions specific to waiver or liability that conflict with the foregoing, then Grassrooter’s liability is limited to the smallest extent possible by law.  Specifically, in those jurisdictions not allowed, Grassrooter does not disclaim liability for: (a) death or personal injury caused by its negligence or that of any of its officers, employees or agents; or (b) fraudulent misrepresentation or intentional misconduct; or (c) any liability which it is not lawful to exclude either now or in the future.

Grassrooter has no fiduciary duty to any Rooter, Seeder, or other user.  Grassrooter and its associated services are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without any warranties, express or implied, including but not limited to implied warranties of merchantability or fitness, noninfringement or course of performance.  Users use Grassrooter’s service at their own risk.

Choice of Law

Users, including but not limited to Rooters and Seeders, agree that Grassrooter’s services shall be deemed solely based in Illinois (where Grassrooter is headquartered and principally conducts business), and Grassrooter’s services shall be deemed passive such that they do not give rise to any personal jurisdiction over Grassrooter in any other jurisdiction.

Grassrooter’s Terms of Service and policies shall be governed by the laws of the State of Illinois, without respect for its conflict of law principles.

Arbitration

Grassrooter, all Rooters, and Seeders agree that any disputes or claims arising out of the use of Grassrooter.co shall be resolved exclusively through final and binding arbitration, except that a Rooter or Seeder may elect to seek resolution in small claims court, if applicable to the dispute or claim.

Arbitrable claims are those that Grassrooter asserts against any Grassrooter or Seeder, and that any Grassrooter or Seeder asserts against Grassrooter, any related or affiliated entity, and the officers, directors, agents, or employees of any of them.

The Federal Arbitration Act governs the interpretation and enforcement of this agreement to arbitrate.  If for any reason the FAA is inapplicable, the law of arbitrability of the State of Illinois shall apply.  To the maximum extent permitted by law, the parties agree to arbitrate claims on an individual basis only, and they waive any right to bring, participate in, or recover under, a class, collective, consolidated, mass, or representative action.  The arbitrator shall apply the Terms of Service and the same substantive law to the dispute as a court would, and the same law of remedies.

To begin an arbitration proceeding against Grassrooter or a related party, a user must send a letter requesting arbitration and describing the claim to Grassrooter’s registered agent, 114 S. 6th St., Unit 1; Geneva, IL 60134.  The arbitration will be conducted by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) under the rules applicable to the claim asserted, including but not limited to the AAA’s Supplementary Procedures for Consumer-Related Disputes.  The AAA’s rules are available at www.adr.org or by calling 1-800-778-7879.

Grassrooter will supply a printed copy of the rules upon a user’s request. Payment and reimbursement of all filing, administration, and arbitrator fees will be governed by the AAA’s rules.

Geneva, Illinois is the sole proper venue for arbitration; provided, however, that the arbitrator once selected shall have the authority to order the parties to arbitrate in a different venue for good cause shown, applying federal law for transferring venue on grounds of forum non conveniens.

If, notwithstanding this arbitration agreement, a claim for any reason proceeds in court rather than in arbitration, the dispute shall be exclusively brought and heard in a court of competent jurisdiction located in the City of Geneva, IL or Kane County, IL. Except as otherwise provided by law or the AAA’s rules, the prevailing party in any arbitration will be entitled to receive from the nonprevailing party all of its reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs.

Waiver and Release

For users in a jurisdiction that requires a specific statement regarding waiver and release then the following applies.  For example, California residents must, as a condition of these Terms, waive the applicability of California Civil Code Section 1542 for unknown claims which states: “A GENERAL RELEASE DOES NOT EXTEND TO CLAIMS WHICH THE CREDITOR DOES NOT KNOW OR SUSPECT TO EXIST IN HIS OR HER FAVOR AT THE TIME OF EXECUTING THE RELEASE, WHICH IF KNOWN BY HIM OR HER MUST HAVE MATERIALLY AFFECTED HIS OR HER SETTLEMENT WITH THE DEBTOR.”  Each user hereby waives this section of the California Civil Code and any similar provision in law, regulation, or code that has the same effect or intent as the foregoing release.

Assignment

Grassrooter may assign or transfer the Terms of Service, any rights and obligations, and any licenses granted hereunder at any time and without limitation.

Users, including but not limited to Rooters and Seeders, may not assign or transfer these Terms, any other Grassrooter policy, or any rights, obligations, or licenses granted thereunder at any time.  Grassrooter specifically does not consent to any such assignment or transfer.

Integration

These Terms of Service and all other policies and terms posted on Grassrooter.co are the entire agreement between each user, Rooter, and Seeder and Grassrooter regarding its subject matter.  If any provision of these Terms of Service are deemed invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, the invalidity of such provision shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions of this Agreement, which shall remain in full force and effect.  Grassrooter’s failure to assert any right or provision under this Agreement shall not constitute a waiver of such right or provision.  Grassrooter reserves the right to update these Terms as circumstances warrant.

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(Last updated: January 31, 2017)

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