Terms of Use

1.   Introduction

The Muséum national d’Histoire Naturelle (hereinafter «MNHN»), located at 57 rue Cuvier, 75005 Paris (France), and the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin, located at Invalidenstr. 43, 10115 Berlin (Germany), both public establishments (hereinafter together «the Museums») offer the services of the platform “Changing Natures” according to the present conditions.

Any use of the Platform requires consultation and acceptance of these general terms of use. The User acknowledges that the use of the Platform requires compliance with all the provisions defined herein.

It is required at each visit to check of any changes in the latter.

The purpose of these general terms is to determine the conditions of use of the services made available to Users using the services of the Platform.


2.  Definitions

The terms defined below shall have the following meanings as between the Parties:

  • «Content(s)»: means all information, objects and/or documents uploaded by Users on the Platform. These contents can be Objects, Metadata or Stories;
  • «Object(s)»: refers to all files uploaded by Users on the Platform. These objects may come from personal archives (e.g. notebooks, vacation photos, everyday objects, etc.), literary and artistic works (photos of paintings, extracts from novels, etc.), newspaper archives or other media (audio/video), etc.;
  • «Metadata»: means the data shared by the User on the Platform to describe the Object (authors, dates and places, environmental elements present in the Object, materials and practices, emotions);
  • «Platform»: designates the “Changing Natures” platform made available by the Museums and allowing everyone to share objects and documents from the past that tell a personal story about environmental transformation. The Platform is accessible via the Internet at the following address: http://www.changing-natures.org;
  • «Service(s)»: refers to all services and functionalities, in particular the sharing of Content, accessible via the Platform;
  • «Story(-ies)»: refers to the testimonials of Users that can be associated with the Objects that they shared on the Platform, with the aim of explaining in a free manner what the object evokes and why they wish to share it with all the Users;
  • «User(s)»: means any person accessing the Platform and using the Platform Services.


3.   Object

The purpose of the present document is to define for the User, the conditions and rules of access and use of the Services offered by the Platform.


4.   Acceptance and enforceability of the general terms of use

4.1   Acceptance

The User may use the Platform and its Services subject to the prior acceptance of these general terms of use.

Acceptance of these terms and conditions of use is formalized by a checkbox «I have read and accept the general terms of use of the Platform» by the User who uses the Platform for the first time, after having consulted the entirety of these terms. This checkbox constitutes proof that the User has read the said provisions and is deemed to have accepted the present terms.

4.2   Amendment

The Museums reserve the right to make any changes to these general terms of use that they deem necessary and useful.

The general terms of use linked on the Platform prevail over any printed version of previous date.

The User may access the previous and archived general terms of use by sending a request by e-mail to: contact@changing-nature.org.

Any use of the Platform by the User after the modifications of the general terms of use implies acceptance by the latter of the new general terms.

4.3   Enforceability

The present general terms of use are enforceable against the Users as soon as they accept them on their first connection to the Platform.

The present terms and conditions of use shall be binding throughout the duration of use of the Platform and up to the date at which new general terms of use replace the present document.

User may at any time cease to use of the Platform and associated Services but remains liable for all previous use.


5.   Duration

These general terms of use are applicable throughout the duration of the use of the Platform by the User and this, until its unsubscription from the Platform.


6.   Platform access

Access to the Website is open for access.

Access to the Platform's Services, including in particular the sharing of Content, requires the prior creation of an account by the User.

The User shall complete a registration form allowing the creation of an account on the Platform.

The User shall not create accounts under the identity of a third party. The User is exclusively responsible for the confidentiality of their identifiers (login and password) allowing them to use their accounts. Any use of their accounts by means of their personal identifiers and passwords is presumed to have been made by the Users themselves or a third party authorized by the Users, and this until their account is deactivated.

The User agrees to provide accurate information when creating an account.

In the event of non-compliance with the general terms of use of the Platform, the Museums reserve the right to deactivate the User's account without notice, after sending an email that has remained without effect for more than 30 days.

In the event of a manifest and significant breach and/or fraud by the User, the deactivation of the account will be carried out by right, without notice or formality.


7.   Platform hosting

The Platform is hosted on the MNHN servers with the highest levels of guarantee and security.

The hosting of the Platform and the associated Services is carried out on French territory.


8.   Advertising and promotion on the platform

The Museums reserve the right to broadcast, free of charge or for a fee, advertising or promotional messages on the Platform.


9.   Hypertext links

The Museums reserves the option of implementing hyperlinks on the Platform to provide access to web pages other than those on the Platform.

The Museums declines all and any liability with regard to the informational content provided on such websites in connection with the activation of such hyperlinks.

The Museums decline all responsibility for hyperlinks published by Users on the Platform, and in particular for the content and/or third-party web pages to which these hyperlinks refer.


10.   Security and availability

The Platform is an automated data processing system.

The Museums make every effort to ensure that the Services are accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, subject to maintenance operations. The Museums cannot guarantee absolute and permanent accessibility or availability of the Platform.

The Museums reserves the right to make additions or modifications to the Platform that they deem necessary or useful for the proper functioning of the Platform and the associated Services.

The Museums cannot be held responsible for any unavailability of the Platform or Services, whether voluntary or not. Likewise, the Museums cannot be held responsible for damage caused to the operating system and the functionalities of the equipment used due to interruptions or disruptions of the Services.

The User declares that they accept the characteristics, limits and risks associated with the use of the Internet and mobile networks.

The User undertakes not to disrupt the proper functioning of the Platform. In particular, the User agrees not to introduce viruses or any other software or technology harmful to the Platform or the associated Services. They also agree to take all appropriate measures to protect their own data and/or software from contamination by viruses and malware.


11.   Obligations of the user

The user is committed to:

  • not to commit any act of infringement, and declares in this respect that they own the Content that they put online on the Platform, or that they have received all the necessary permissions, agreements and authorizations to put it online on the Platform.;
  • not to reproduce, download, represent or modify all or part of the Platform;
  • to use the Platform in a fair manner, in compliance with the present general terms, the applicable laws and regulations, in particular the laws relating to intellectual and industrial property, information technology and personal data protection;
  • not to upload, share or store any content that is illegal or contravenes the French law of 29 July 1881 on freedom of the press, or that contains pornography, child pornography or violent content, without this list being exhaustive, or other content that is inappropriate or of a private nature or that is unrelated to the purpose of the Platform;
  • not to create or use other accounts than the one initially created, either under their own identity or that of a third party.

The User is responsible for the use of the Platform, the associates Services and their respective actions on the Platform. The information stored and Contents put online by the Users shall not contravene the laws, national and international regulations in force. 

The User shall not collect in any way whatsoever information on others Users and third parties, manually or automatically, without their consent, in particular with a view to sending unsolicited prospecting or spam, chains letters. 


12.   Reporting of illegal content

The Museums allow the User to notify them any illegal content published on the Platform to the following e-mail address: contact@changing-nature.org.

This notification may be made by any User who identifies an inappropriate or illegal content. The notification is made under the sole and exclusive responsibility of the User.

Once the contentious content has been duly communicated to the Museums, the latter reserve the right to delete it, particularly if it is clearly illegal.

The User specifically acknowledges that the Museums shall have the right to suspend or delete, without notice:

  • any element, whatever the form, which would present a risk of infringement of any of the provisions of these general terms of use, the laws and regulations in force and/or the rights of a third party, of any nature whatsoever
  • any content infringing the copyright of MNHN, of Users or of third parties;
  • illegal content and, in particular discriminatory, racist, defamatory, abusive, obscene, hateful or violent comments, without this list being restrictive;
  • content that that has been notified by a third party through the procedure for reporting illegal or abusive content;
  • content for which they will have received a request or a judicial authorization;
  • content that would damage their image or reputation.

In one of these cases, the Museums shall have the right to suspend, without delay, the access to the concerned User account. 

The Museum are not responsible for any damage caused by the deletion of the Content for any of the reasons mentioned in the previous paragraph. 


13.   Personal data

The automated processing of personal data implanted jointly by the Museums complies with obligations relating to the French Data Protection Act n° 78-17 of January 6, 1978 on information technology, files and freedoms, known as the "Information Technology and Freedoms" law in force, Regulation (EU) 2016/679 on the protection of individuals with regard to personal data of April 27, 2016, as well as all other regulations on the protection of personal data (hereinafter collectively referred to as the "personal data protection regulations").

In accordance with the regulations on the protection of personal data, the guiding principles to be respected in the implementation of personal data processing are the following:

  • The respect of the initial purpose of the processing;
  • The relevance and accuracy of the data with regard to the purposes pursued;
  • Informing people about the collection of data;
  • Information of the persons concerned;
  • The right of access, rectification;
  • The right to object;
  • Protection adapted to the risks presented by the processing on the technical and organizational levels;
  • Strict control of the dissemination of personal data to outside parties.

By creating an account on the Platform, the Museums collect the User's account data and, as such, process personal data for which they are responsible.

The creation of an account on the Platform requires the communication of personal data by the User.

The Museums undertake to ensure that the data concerning the User is collected and processed in a fair and lawful manner, in accordance with the conditions set out.

The following categories are processing:

  • Identity information (name, year of birth);
  • Contact information (e-mail address);
  • Connection data.

Information relating to identity is kept as long as the User uses the Platform and their personal accounts have not been deleted by them or by the Museums, increased by the statute of limitations and mandatory retention periods. 

These data are intended for the Museums as well as for authorized persons with the Museums.

The Museums carry out processing operations as joint controllers. The personal data collected in this context are for the purpose of accessing and using the Platform and the Services.

The personal data collected are hosted on servers in France or in a country of the European Union and will not be subject to transfers of personal data to non-European Union countries.

The User has a right to access, query, modify, rectify, delete, portability and opposition of personal data concerning them.

Data subjects may also give instructions regarding the retention, erasure and disclosure of their data after their death. A person may be designated to carry out these instructions and will then have the authority, when the person is deceased, to take cognizance of the instructions and request their implementation from the relevant data controllers. In the case of specific directives, they may also be entrusted to the data controllers in the event of death.

To exercise their rights, the User must send a message to the Museums:

  • to the following addresses:

Unité Mosaic / Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle – Sorbonne Université / BC 98 - Barre 4656-2 / 4 Place Jussieu / 75252 Paris Cedex 05 / France


Museum für Naturkunde / Leibniz-Institut für Evolutions-und Biodiversitätsforschung / Invalidenstr. 43 / D-10115 Berlin;

  • or to the following e-mail address: contact@changing-natures.org.

In addition, the User has the right to lodge a complaint with the French data protection authority (the Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (Cnil)).

For more details, the User may consult the Personal Data Protection Policy available at the following address: https://www.changing-natures.org/privacy-policy


14.   Intellectual property

14.1   The platform

The general structure of the Platform is the exclusive property of the Museums.

The Museums grant the User, who accepts it, a personal, non-exclusive and non-transferable license to use the Platform for the sole purpose of using the Services, for the entire duration of this Agreement.

Any other use, not expressly authorized in writing and in advance by the Museums are prohibited and constitute an infringement.

The User is prohibited from modifying, copying, reproducing, downloading, broadcasting, transmitting, commercially exploiting and/or distributing in any way whatsoever the pages of the Platform, or the computer codes of the elements making up the Platform.

14.2   Contents posted on the platform

Unless indicated otherwise (Content belonging to the public domain or Content that is already published under a Creative Commons license), all Content put online by the User are placed at the disposal according to the terms of the license CC BY-SA, which the User accepts. 

With regard to Content belonging to third parties, the User undertakes to share only Content:

  • under a Creative Commons license whose conditions allow the reuse of Content; and/or
  • for which they have the necessary rights allowing the uploading and sharing of the Contents on the Platform under CC BY-SA license.

This Creative Commons license imposes, in case of redistribution, an obligation for the person who reuses the work to mention who is the author and, in case of creation of a derivative work, i.e. a new work integrating one or more contents, to diffuse the derivative work under the terms of the original license, i.e. under the Creative Commons CC BY-SA license.


15.   Responsibility

15.1   User’s responsibility

The User is solely responsible for the Contents they upload and share on the Platform.

15.2   Responsibility of the museums

The Museums will not be held responsible:

  • due to a Content or a Object put online by the User, or due to a use of the Platform, contrary to the law or to the regulations in force;
  • because of the quality of the service, the Services being offered «as is» ;
  • due to the modification, deletion or interruption of Services or access to the Platform ;
  • within the limits of the legislation in force, for any indirect damage and this including in particular the losses of profit, data, or any other loss of intangible assets, because of the use of the Platform or on the contrary of the impossibility of its use. 

In any event, the responsibility of the Museums shall only be liable for the consequences of direct damages, excluding of indirect damages.

This clause shall continue to apply in the event of invalidity, termination or rescission of these terms of use.


16.   Suspension and exclusion

In the event of non-compliance with these general terms of use (e.g. sharing of illegal or inappropriate content), the Museums reserves the right to suspend the User’s access to the Platform without prior notice, without prejudice to any damages to which the Museums may claim.


17.   Miscellaneous

17.1   Headings

In the event of difficulties in interpretation resulting from contradiction between any of the headings of clauses and the content of any clause, such headings shall be deemed omitted.

17.2   Invalidity

If one or more of the provisions of these general terms of use are held to be invalid or declared as such in application of a law, a regulation or following a final decision of a competent court, the other provisions shall retain all their force and scope.

17.3   Completeness

These terms of use supersede any and all quasi-contracts, implied and express covenants, promises and undertakings having the same subject matter as these terms.

However, the purpose of this clause is not to prevent the use of such documents but to assess the legal quality of the consents exchanged in the formation of this agreement.

17.4   Questions

For any query relating to the content of the Platform or the application of these general terms of use, the User may send an e-mail to the following address: contact@changing-natures.org.


18.   Governing law and competent court

The present general terms of use of the Platform shall be governed by the laws of France. The same shall apply to substantive and formal rules, notwithstanding the venues for enforcement of substantive or ancillary obligations. The User acknowledges the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of Paris.