Another one of these. I'd appreciate it if the lawyers on OS could parse it and correct me if I'm wrong.
From today's updated TOS:
"By submitting or posting User Content using the Service or the Site, you grant to Salon an irrevocable, perpetual, non-exclusive, transferable, fully paid, worldwide license to: (1) use, copy, publicly perform, publicly display, reformat, translate, excerpt (in whole or in part) and distribute the User Content in or through any medium now known or hereafter invented, for any purpose; (2) to prepare derivative works using the User Content, or to incorporate it into other works, for any purpose; and (3) to grant and authorize sublicenses of any or all of the foregoing rights."
I think this means that OS can continue to use any and all posts, however it wants, without the additional consent of the author -- and without payment.
"You may remove your User Content from the Site at any time. If you choose to remove your User Content, the User Content will no longer appear on the Site. However, you acknowledge that Salon may retain archived copies of your User Content, and that Salon will retain the rights to the content granted by these TOS."
Removing posts can't get you out of this.
"Salon does not assert any ownership over your User Content; rather, as between Salon and you, subject to the rights granted to us in these TOS, you retain full ownership of all of your User Content and any intellectual property rights or other proprietary rights associated with your User Content."
You can still do other things you want with the content.
"Salon may obtain and exercise intellectual property rights over compilations, collective works, or derivative works that incorporate User Content you have provided. In that case, the rights Salon obtains will apply only to the compilation, collective work, or derivative work; as between Salon and you, subject to the rights granted to us in these TOS, you will retain full ownership of and rights to your User Content."
By using your post in a collection (say), Salon obtains the intellectual property rights, for the purposes of that collection.
"You understand and agree that you will receive no compensation from Salon for any User Content you submit to Open Salon or post on the Site. You understand and agree that User Content you submit to Open Salon or post on the Site may be organized, arranged, formatted, categorized, designated, displayed, and edited as Salon determines, in its sole discretion. . . . Salon editors may (or may not) modify User Content you submit as follows: (1) editing existing headlines or adding headlines to the content; (2) creating and adding brief summaries of the content; or (3) editing the text or other elements of the content."
There is no limit to how Salon can edit how your stuff. You don't get to accept or reject editorial changes.
I understand that there's a distinction made here between "ownership" and "licensure." However, the scope of rights asserted in the licensing to OS gives Salon the right to do just about anything it wants with anything posted here, and the author can never prevent that use or obtain payment. The only limit I see on what Salon can do is this: it can't prevent us from doing whatever we damn want, also, with our stuff. It seems to amount to a co-ownership and complete non-interference between the co-owners (author and Salon).
I can't think of any standard publishing practices in any genre that claim so much, and offer so little to the author. For most people, use of the site will be worth granting these broad powers, which will probably not be used in most cases. But if you do happen to write something valuable, OS clearly can make money from it -- and you can too, but you'll be competing directly with yourself.