Google Terms of Service
Country version: Germany
What’s covered in these terms
We know it’s tempting to skip these Terms of Service, but it’s important to establish what you can expect from us as you use Google services, and what we expect from you.
These Terms of Service reflect the way that Google’s business works, the laws that apply to our company, and certain things that we’ve always believed to be true. As a result, these Terms of Service help define Google’s relationship with you as you interact with our services. For example, these terms include the following topic headings:
- What you can expect from us, which describes how we provide and develop our services
- What we expect from you, which establishes certain rules for using our services
- Content in Google services, which describes the intellectual property rights to the content that you find in our services – whether that content belongs to you, Google or others
- In case of problems or disagreements, which describes other legal rights that you have, and what to expect in case someone violates these terms.
Understanding these terms is important because, to use our services, you must accept these terms.
In the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland, Google services are provided by:
Google Ireland Limited
incorporated and operating under the laws of Ireland (Registered Number: 368047)
Gordon House, Barrow Street
If you’re under the age required to manage your own Google Account, you must have your parent or legal guardian’s permission to use a Google Account. Please ask your parent or legal guardian to read these terms with you.
If you’re a parent or legal guardian who has accepted these terms, and you allow your child to use the services, then to the extent permitted by applicable law, you’re responsible for your child’s activity on the services.
Some Google services have additional age requirements as described in their service-specific additional terms and policies.
Your relationship with Google
These terms help define the relationship between you and Google. Broadly speaking, we give you permission to use our services if you agree to follow these terms, which reflect how Google’s business works and how we earn money. When we speak of 'Google', 'we', 'us' and 'our', we mean Google Ireland Limited and its affiliates.
What you can expect from us
Provide a broad range of useful services
- apps and sites (such as Search and Maps)
- platforms (such as Google Play)
- integrated services (such as Maps embedded in other companies' apps or sites)
- devices (such as Google Home)
Our services are designed to work together, making it easier for you to move from one activity to the next. For example, Maps can remind you to leave for an appointment that appears in your Google Calendar.
Improve Google services
We maintain a rigorous product research programme, so before we change or stop offering a service, we carefully consider the reasonableness of the change or deprecation, your interests as a user, your reasonable expectations and the potential impact on you and others. We only change or stop offering services for valid reasons, such as to improve performance or security, to comply with law, to prevent illegal activities or abuse, to reflect technical developments or because a feature or an entire service is no longer popular enough or economical to offer.
If we make material changes that negatively impact your use of our services or if we stop offering a service, we’ll provide you with reasonable advance notice and an opportunity to export your content from your Google Account using Google Takeout, except in urgent situations such as preventing abuse, responding to legal requirements or addressing security and operability issues.
What we expect from you
Follow these terms and service-specific additional terms
- these terms
- service-specific additional terms, which could, for example, include things like additional age requirements
Although we give you permission to use our services, we retain any intellectual property rights that we have in the services.
- comply with applicable laws, including export control, sanctions and human trafficking laws
- respect the rights of others, including privacy and intellectual property rights
- don’t abuse or harm others or yourself (or threaten or encourage such abuse or harm) – for example, by misleading, defrauding, defaming, bullying, harassing or stalking others
- don’t abuse, harm, interfere with, or disrupt the services
Our service-specific additional terms and policies provide additional details about appropriate conduct that everyone using those services must follow. If you find that others aren’t following these rules, many of our services allow you to report abuse. If we act on a report of abuse, we also provide a fair process as described in the Taking action in case of problems section.
Permission to use your content
Some of our services are designed to let you upload, submit, store, send, receive or share your content. You have no obligation to provide any content to our services and you’re free to choose the content that you want to provide. If you choose to upload or share content, please make sure that you have the necessary rights to do so and that the content is lawful.
Your content remains yours, which means that you retain any intellectual property rights that you have in your content. For example, you have intellectual property rights in the creative content that you make, such as reviews that you write. Or you may have the right to share someone else’s creative content if they’ve given you their permission.
We need your permission if your intellectual property rights restrict our use of your content. You provide Google with that permission through this licence.
This licence covers your content if that content is protected by intellectual property rights.
What’s not covered
- This licence doesn’t affect your data protection rights – it’s only about your intellectual property rights
- This licence doesn’t cover these types of content:
- publicly available, factual information that you provide, such as corrections to the address of a local business. That information doesn’t require a licence because it’s considered common knowledge that everyone’s free to use.
- feedback that you offer, such as suggestions to improve our services. Feedback is covered in the Service-related communications section below.
- worldwide, which means that it’s valid anywhere in the world
- non-exclusive, which means that you can license your content to others
- royalty-free, which means that there are no fees for this licence
This licence allows Google to do the following things, only for the limited purposes described in the Purpose section below:
- use your content for technical purposes only – for example, to save your content on our systems and make it accessible from anywhere that you go, or to reformat your content for compatibility with our services
- make your content publicly available if and only to the extent that you’ve made it visible to others
- sublicense these rights to:
- other users to allow the services to work as designed, such as enabling you to share photos with people that you choose
- our contractors who’ve signed agreements with us that are consistent with these terms, only for the limited purposes described in the Purpose section below
This licence is for the limited purpose of operating the services, which means allowing the services to work as designed and creating new features and functionalities. This includes using automated systems and algorithms to analyse your content:
- for spam, malware and illegal content
- to recognise patterns in data, such as determining when to suggest a new album in Google Photos to keep related photos together
- to customise our services for you, such as providing recommendations and personalised search results, content and ads (which you can change or turn off in Ad Settings)
This analysis occurs as the content is sent, received and when it is stored.
This licence lasts for as long as your content is protected by intellectual property rights, unless you remove your content from our services earlier.
If you remove from our services any content that’s covered by this licence, our systems will stop making that content publicly available in a reasonable amount of time. There are two exceptions:
- If you already shared your content with others before removing it. For example, if you shared a photo with a friend who then made a copy of it, or shared it again, then that photo may continue to appear in your friend’s Google Account even after you remove it from your Google Account.
- If you make your content available through other companies' services, it’s possible that search engines, including Google Search, will continue to find and display your content as part of their search results.
Using Google services
Your Google Account
If you meet these age requirements, you can create a Google Account for your convenience. Some services require that you have a Google Account in order to work – for example, to use Gmail, you need a Google Account so that you have a place to send and receive your email.
You’re responsible for what you do with your Google Account, including taking reasonable steps to keep your Google Account secure, and we encourage you to regularly use the Security Check-Up.
Using Google services on behalf of an organisation or business
- an authorised representative of that organisation must agree to these terms
- your organisation’s administrator may assign a Google Account to you. That administrator might require you to follow additional rules and may be able to access or disable your Google Account.
If you choose to give us feedback, such as suggestions to improve our services, we may act on your feedback without obligation to you.
Content in Google services
Some of our services give you the opportunity to make your content publicly available – for example, you might post a product or restaurant review that you wrote, or you might upload a blog post that you created.
- See the Permission to use your content section for more about your rights in your content, and how your content is used in our services
- See the Removing your content section to learn why and how we might remove user-generated content from our services
If you think that someone is infringing your intellectual property rights, you can send us notice of the infringement and we’ll take appropriate action. For example, we suspend or close the Google Accounts of repeat copyright infringers as described in our Copyright Help Centre.
Some of our services include content that belongs to Google – for example, many of the visual illustrations that you see in Google Maps. You may use Google’s content as allowed by these terms and any service-specific additional terms, but we retain any intellectual property rights that we have in our content. Don’t remove, obscure or alter any of our branding, logos or legal notices. If you want to use our branding or logos, please see the Google Brand Permissions page.
Finally, some of our services give you access to content that belongs to other people or organisations – for example, a store owner’s description of their own business, or a newspaper article displayed in Google News. You may not use this content without that person or organisation’s permission, or as otherwise allowed by law. The views expressed in the content of other people or organisations are their own, and don’t necessarily reflect Google’s views.
Software in Google services
Some of our services include downloadable software. We give you permission to use that software as part of the services.
- worldwide, which means that it's valid anywhere in the world
- non-exclusive, which means that we can license the software to others
- royalty-free, which means that there are no fees for this licence
- personal, which means that it doesn't extend to anyone else
- non-assignable, which means that you're not allowed to assign the licence to anyone else
Some of our services include software that’s offered under open-source licence terms that we make available to you. Sometimes there are provisions in the open-source licence that explicitly override parts of these terms, so please make sure that you read those licences.
You may not copy, modify, distribute, sell or lease any part of our services or software. Also, you may not reverse engineer or attempt to extract any of our source code unless you have our written permission or applicable law lets you do so.
When a service requires or includes downloadable software, that software sometimes updates automatically on your device once a new version or feature is available. Some services let you adjust your automatic update settings.
In case of problems or disagreements
By law, you have the right to (1) a certain quality of service, and (2) ways to fix problems if things go wrong. These terms don't limit or take away any of those rights. For example, if you're a consumer, then you continue to enjoy all legal rights granted to consumers under applicable law.
The only commitments that we make about our services (including the content in the services, the specific functions of our services, or their reliability, availability or ability to meet your needs) are (1) stated in the service-specific additional terms or (2) provided under applicable laws. We don’t make any other commitments about our services.
For all users
These terms only limit our responsibilities as allowed by applicable law. Specifically, these terms don't limit Google's liability for death or personal injury, fraud, fraudulent misrepresentation, gross negligence or willful misconduct. In addition, these terms don't limit your rights under product liability law.
For property damage or financial loss caused by Google, its representatives or its agents due to slight negligence, Google is only liable for breaches of essential contractual obligations that result in typical damage foreseeable at the conclusion of the contract. An essential contractual obligation is an obligation that must be complied with as a prerequisite for the performance of the contract, and that the parties may trust will be fulfilled. This does not change the burden of proof to your detriment.
For business users and organisations only
If you're a business user or organisation, then to the extent allowed by applicable law you'll indemnify Google and its directors, officers, employees and contractors for any third-party legal proceedings (including actions by government authorities) arising out of or relating to your unlawful use of the services or violation of these terms or service-specific additional terms. This indemnity covers any liability or expense arising from claims, losses, damages, judgments, fines, litigation costs and legal fees. If you're legally exempt from certain responsibilities such as indemnification, then those responsibilities don't apply to you under these terms. For example, the United Nations enjoys certain immunities from legal obligations and these terms don't override those immunities.
Taking action in case of problems
Before taking action as described below, we’ll provide you with advanced notice when reasonably possible, describe the reason for our action, and give you an opportunity to fix the problem, unless there are objective and concrete reasons to believe that doing so would:
- cause harm or liability to a user, third party or Google
- violate the law or a legal enforcement authority’s order
- compromise an investigation
- compromise the operation, integrity or security of our services
Removing your content
If there are objective and concrete reasons to believe that any of your content (1) breaches these terms, service-specific additional terms or policies, (2) violates applicable law, or (3) could harm our users, third parties or Google, then we reserve the right to take down some or all of that content in accordance with applicable law. Examples include child pornography, content that facilitates human trafficking or harassment, and content that infringes someone else’s intellectual property rights.
Suspending or terminating your access to Google services
Google reserves the right to suspend or terminate your access to the services or delete your Google Account if any of these things happen:
- you materially or repeatedly breach these terms, service-specific additional terms or policies
- we’re required to do so to comply with a legal requirement or a court order
- there are objective and concrete reasons to believe that your conduct causes harm or liability to a user, third party or Google – for example, by hacking, phishing, harassing, spamming, misleading others or scraping content that doesn’t belong to you
If you believe that your Google Account has been suspended or terminated in error, you can appeal.
Of course, you’re always free to stop using our services at any time. If you do stop using a service, we’d appreciate knowing why so that we can continue improving our services.
Handling requests for your data
Settling disputes, governing law and courts
For information about how to contact Google, please visit our contact page.
If you’re a resident of, or an organisation based in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, these terms and your relationship with Google under these terms and service-specific additional terms, are governed by the laws of your country of residence, and you can file legal disputes in your local courts.
About these terms
By law, you have certain rights that can’t be limited by a contract like these Terms of Service. These terms are in no way intended to restrict those rights.
We want to make these terms easy to understand, so we’ve used examples from our services. But not all the services mentioned may be available in your country.
We may update these terms and service-specific additional terms (1) to reflect changes in our services or how we do business – for example, when we add new services, features, technologies, pricing or benefits (or remove old ones), (2) for legal, regulatory or security reasons or (3) to prevent abuse or harm.
If we change these terms or service-specific additional terms, we’ll provide you with at least 15 days’ advance notice before the changes take effect. When we notify you of changes, we’ll provide you with the new version of the terms and point out the material changes. If you don’t object before the changes take effect, you’ll be deemed to have accepted the changed terms. Our notice will explain this objection process. You can refuse to accept the changes, in which case the changes won’t apply to you, but we reserve the right to end our relationship with you if all other termination requirements are met. You can also end your relationship with us at any time by closing your Google Account.
An entity that belongs to the Google group of companies, which means Google LLC and its subsidiaries, including the following companies that provide consumer services in the EU: Google Ireland Limited, Google Commerce Limited and Google Dialer Inc.
An individual or entity who is not a consumer (see consumer).
A commercial guarantee is a voluntary commitment that certain quality standards will be met and that if those standards aren’t met, the company offering the guarantee is responsible for repairing, replacing or refunding the consumer for defective items.
An individual who uses Google services for personal, non-commercial purposes outside of their trade, business, craft or profession. This includes 'consumers' as defined in Article 2.1 of the EU consumer rights directive. (See business user)
A legal right that allows the creator of an original work (such as a blog post, photo or video) to decide if and how that original work may be used by others, subject to certain limitations and exceptions.
If you have a Google Account, we associate your account with a country (or territory) so that we can determine:
- the Google affiliate that provides the services to you and that processes your information as you use the services
- the version of the terms that govern our relationship
When you’ve signed out, your country version is determined by the location where you’re using Google services. If you have an account, you can sign in and view these terms to see the country associated with it.
A statement that limits someone’s legal responsibilities.
EU Platform-to-Business Regulation
The Regulation (EU) 2019/1150 on promoting fairness and transparency for business users of online intermediation services.
indemnify or indemnity
An individual or organisation’s contractual obligation to compensate the losses suffered by another individual or organisation from legal proceedings such as lawsuits.
intellectual property rights (IP rights)
Rights over the creations of a person’s mind, such as inventions (patent rights); literary and artistic works (copyright); designs (design rights), and symbols, names and images used in commerce (trademarks). IP rights may belong to you, another individual or an organisation.
lack of conformity
A legal concept that defines the difference between how something should work and how it actually works. Under the law, how something should work is based on how the seller or trader describes it, whether its quality and performance are satisfactory and its fitness for the usual purpose of such items.
A legal guarantee is a requirement under the law that a seller or trader is liable if their digital content, services or goods are defective (that is, that they lack conformity).
A legal entity (such as a corporation, non-profit or school) and not an individual person.
The Google services that are subject to these terms are the products and services listed at https://policies.google.com/terms/service-specific, including:
- apps and sites (like Search and Maps)
- platforms (like Google Shopping)
- integrated services (such as Maps embedded in other companies' apps or sites)
- devices and other goods (like Google Nest)
Many of these services also include content that you can stream or interact with.
Symbols, names and images used in commerce that are capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one individual or organisation from those of another.
Things that you create, upload, submit, store, send, receive or share using our services, such as:
- Docs, Sheets and Slides that you create
- blog posts that you upload through Blogger
- reviews that you submit via Maps
- videos that you store in Drive
- emails that you send and receive through Gmail
- pictures that you share with friends via Photos
- travel itineraries that you share with Google