Electric Sheep & Gold Sheep

Terms of Service


Electric Sheep is an online generative art project running on a distributed supercomputer. What this means is that while you are running the screensaver, your computer processor is spending some of its available cycles performing calculations that result in art made with math. The images generated by those who choose to participate in this giant distributed supercomputer are sent back to our server and each become frames of an animated sequence. Those short video clips are automatically downloaded by our users and play back in various arrangements when your computer sleeps. The screensaver you enjoy today, therefore, is made out of the images your computer rendered a few weeks ago. In this way we have achieved the ultimate in computer-generated visuals - a never-ending, always updated stream of abstract animation. Welcome to the Electric Sheep!

Gold Sheep are a higher-resolution version of our free screensaver product. Electric Sheep has tiers of membership to make it possible for everyone with an Internet-connected computer to participate; when you subscribe to our gold sheep, you are getting images that move more slowly and appear to be in sharper focus, and are of higher quality than the free sheep. Your screensaver program periodically downloads new sheep from the Internet to stay fresh. Should you disconnect from the net, the sheep in your collection are yours to keep, and the screensaver will run without you being online, but you will not see new sheep.

These Terms of Service govern your use of our service.

  1. Acceptance of Terms of Use
    1. These Terms of Use, which include our Privacy Policy and End User License Agreement ("EULA") govern your use of the Electric Sheep service. By using the Electric Sheep, you accept and agree to these Terms of Use. If you do not agree to these Terms of Use, do not use our service.
    2. Electric Sheep services are provided by Spotworks LLC.
  2. Changes to Terms of Use. Spotworks LLC may, from time to time, change these Terms of Use. We will post announcements through social media and on electricsheep.org when we do so.
  3. Communication Preferences. You are required to give us your email address as a paying subscriber, and give us permission to contact you. You may opt-out of receiving the Electric Sheep newsletter. If we do not have your email address, we have limited ways of reaching out to you. Periodically we may embed a message in the screensaver video but we reserve that for emergencies.
  4. Free Use, Subscription, Billing and Cancellation
  5. Free Personal Use - No Guarantee of Operability
    1. You may download the Electric Sheep screensaver free of charge and use it for personal non-commercial use only. Our screensaver software (playback software) may be used to the free content or premium (subscription) Gold Sheep content. Our free content is conditionally available for non-commercial reuse with attribution (please see our Creative Commons section below); our premium content is not (please see . Spotworks LLC is not responsible if the screensaver does not run on your computer. Reasons for this may range from your computer’s operating system being incompatible with our software, your computer not having enough disk space to store sheep, your internet connection preventing the download of sheep, your security software preventing the storage of files downloaded from the Internet on your computer, or other unspecified reasons. Regardless of the reason, Spotworks LLC has no obligation to ensure that the playback system works for you, that the sheep run on your computer, or that your operating system remains compatible with the Electric Sheep playback software over time.
    2. We may test various aspects of our service, or they may break. We reserve the right to, and by using our service you agree that we may, include you in or exclude you from these tests or service interruptions without notice. We reserve the right in our sole and absolute discretion to make changes from time to time and without notice in how we offer and operate our service. Sheep content may get stuck in a loop or otherwise not display properly. We are not liable for any malfunction or unexpected performance interruption.
  6. Gold Sheep Subscription
    1. Ongoing Subscription. Your Gold Sheep subscription will continue month-to-month unless and until you cancel your subscription or we terminate it. You must provide us with a current, valid, accepted method of payment (as such may be updated from time to time, "Payment Method") to subscribe. We will bill the monthly subscription fee to your Payment Method.
    2. Amendments. We reserve the right to modify, terminate or otherwise amend our offered subscription plans. You are responsible for keeping your email address on file with us current and making sure our billing emails are not sent to your spam folder. We will always notify you via your email address first if the monthly subscription fee should ever increase.
    3. Cancel at any time. You are free to cancel your Gold Sheep membership at any time. The Gold Sheep you have already accumulated and the playback software you have downloaded remain yours for personal use. We must receive your subscription cancellation before it renews that cycle in order to avoid billing of the next cycle's subscription fees to your Payment Method. We do not pro-rate cycles if you only use a portion of your cycle. You are prohibited from acquiring new Gold Sheep (for example, from a friend or through an intermediary) once your subscription has ended.
    4. Lifetime Membership Lifetime Memberships last until the end of the product. If and when the product changes your subscription will remain valid, though we define what that means. If and when the Gold Sheep are discontinued, the effectiveness of a Lifetime Membership also ends. "Lifetime" does not refer to the customer or the artist.
    5. Limited Cancellations. When you sign up for Gold Sheep, a selection of sheep are immediately downloaded to your computer. For this reason we must limit refunds. The expense from streaming content to your computer is incurred by us upon sign up, so Spotworks LLC is only able to refund your payment if you cancel within one day of purchase. We suggest that you try using our screensaver software with the free content first, before becoming a Gold Sheep subscriber. This will prevent your disappointment if you learn you are unable to run Electric Sheep on your computer. Because beauty is in the eye of the beholder, we are not responsible for your personal dissatisfaction with Gold Sheep if you decide you do not like them as well as the Free version. There are no refunds after the one-day trial ends.
    6. No Content Replacement - No Content Guarantee. If you lose your Gold Sheep for any reason, for example if you buy a new computer and are unable to get your Gold Sheep off your old computer, or your old sheep are no longer compatible with your new Electric Sheep screensaver software, or your existing data gets erased, we do not provide replacement sheep. The Electric Sheep screensaver is designed to be a self-replenishing system and your subscription means you should be able to start a new collection upon signing in, even if your old collection is lost. However, Spotworks LLC does not have a responsibility to provide an uninterrupted or constant supply of new sheep to its users. We offer no guarantee as to the number of new sheep or videos provided per billing cycle. In the event that Electric Sheep suffers a setback and is unable to provide sheep, your subscription remains as the supporting funding mechanism that allows us to continue to operate and fix the problem. If you don’t like the service you are receiving from Spotworks LLC, you are free to cancel at any time.
    7. For use on one computer only. You may backup your Gold Sheep, and move your flock to a new computer, but you may not copy them to multiple computers, and you may not use the same email and password on more than one computer at a time.
    8. No Distribution of Gold Sheep Content. The Electric Sheep service, and any Gold Sheep content viewed through our playback software, are for your personal and non-commercial use only. We developed the higher-resolution subscription service as a way to fund the maintenance and development of the Electric Sheep generative art and artificial life project, and they are NOT Creative Commons licensed. As a consequence of your Gold Sheep subscription, we grant you a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, license to download and watch Gold Sheep premium content for personal enjoyment only. Except for the foregoing limited license, no right, title or interest shall be transferred to you. You agree not to use the service for public performances, not to include Gold Sheep in video posted online or sold, and not to reuse the Gold Sheep in any way.
  7. Billing
    1. Recurring Billing. By starting your Gold Sheep subscription and providing or designating a Payment Method, you authorize us to charge you a monthly subscription fee at the then current rate.
    2. Price Changes. We reserve the right to adjust pricing for our service or any components thereof in any manner and at any time as we may determine in our sole and absolute discretion. Except as otherwise expressly provided for in these Terms of Use, any price changes to your service will take effect following email notice to you.
    3. Billing Cycle. The subscription fee for our service will be billed at the beginning of your subscription and each month thereafter unless and until you cancel your membership. We automatically bill your Payment Method each month on the calendar day corresponding to the commencement of your paying membership. We do not prorate for partial months. We reserve the right to change the timing of our billing, in particular, as indicated below, if your Payment Method has not successfully settled. In the event your paying membership began on a day not contained in a given month, we may bill your Payment Method on a day in the applicable month or such other day as we deem appropriate. For example, if you started your Gold Sheep subscription on January 31st, your next payment date is likely to be February 28th, and your Payment Method would be billed on that date. Visit our website and click on the "View billing details" link on the "Your Account" page to see the commencement date for your next renewal period. As used in these Terms of Use, "billing" shall indicate a charge, debit or other payment clearance, as applicable, against your Payment Method. Unless otherwise stated differently, month or monthly refers to your billing cycle.
    4. No Refunds. PAYMENTS ARE NONREFUNDABLE AND THERE ARE NO REFUNDS OR CREDITS FOR PARTIALLY USED PERIODS. Following any cancellation, however, you will continue to be able to use your playback software and the Gold Sheep you have accumulated. At any time, and for any reason, we may provide a refund, discount, or other consideration to some or all of our members ("credits"). The amount and form of such credits, and the decision to provide them, are at our sole and absolute discretion. The provision of credits in one instance does not entitle you to credits in the future for similar instances, nor does it obligate us to provide credits in the future, under any circumstance.
    5. Payment Methods. You may edit your Payment Method information by visiting our website and clicking on the "Your Account" link. If a payment is not successfully settled, due to expiration, insufficient funds, or otherwise, and you do not edit your Payment Method information or cancel your account (see, "Cancellation" below), you remain responsible for any uncollected amounts and authorize us to continue billing the Payment Method, as it may be updated. This may result in a change to your payment billing dates. For certain Payment Methods, the issuer of your Payment Method may charge you a foreign transaction fee or other charges. Check with your Payment Method service provider for details.
    6. Cancellation. You may cancel your Gold Sheep subscription at any time, and your ability to download Gold sheep will end at that time. WE DO NOT PROVIDE REFUNDS OR CREDITS FOR ANY PARTIAL-MONTH MEMBERSHIP PERIODS OR UNWATCHED OR UNDOWNLOADED SHEEP. It is simply too hard to verify whether our customers have downloaded or watched sheep or not, and the cost to us is typically incurred up front, therefore we must pass it on to the customer. To cancel, go to the "Your Account" page on our website and follow the instructions for cancellation. If you cancel your subscription, your account will automatically close. If you signed up for Gold Sheep using your account with a third party as a Payment Method, and wish to cancel your Gold Sheep membership at any time, including during your free trial, you may need to do so through such third party, including by visiting your account with the applicable third party and turning off auto-renew, or unsubscribing from, the Gold Sheep service through that third party. You may also find billing information about your Gold Sheep membership by visiting your account with the applicable third party.
  8. Content Submission, Code Contributions and Creative Commons Licensing
    1. The Electric Sheep screensaver is an open source system licensed under GNU 7.5. As such, computer programmers are able to make code contributions and upgrades to the software which may or may not be accepted by our administrators. Open source software has a long and proven history of being a better way than closed-source system to prevent introduction of malicious code into a system. However, we offer not guarantee that our software is completely secure and we accept no responsibility in the event that malicious actors gain access to users’ computers through our system. While we always do everything in our power to make sure our code does not become compromised, we do not believe there is any way any software provider can offer a 100% secure guarantee. You download and install Electric Sheep playback software at your own risk.
    2. While the majority of image content in the Electric Sheep service is algorithmically generated, some image content is user-submitted. Although the majority of content is abstract in appearance, sometimes abstractions can be made to display or suggest representational visuals. You agree to submit content that shows common sense respect for other users of the Electric Sheep system, including not submitting inappropriate content (including but not limited to pornographic images, racist slurs, anti-religious messaging or curse words). If you choose to submit image content to the Electric Sheep project, you are giving the Electric Sheep Project the right to use your submissions.
    3. You agree to use the Electric Sheep service, including all features and functionalities associated therewith, in accordance with all applicable laws, rules and regulations, or other restrictions on use of the service or content therein. You agree not to reproduce, distribute, modify, display, perform, publish, license, create derivative works from, offer for sale, or use (except as explicitly authorized in these Terms of Service) Gold Sheep content. You also agree not to circumvent, remove, alter, deactivate, degrade or thwart any of the content protections in the open source Electric Sheep screensaver software; use any robot, spider, scraper or other automated means to harvest Electric Sheep content; insert malicious code or maliciously manipulate the content of the Electric Sheep service in any way; gain improper access to other files belonging to the user stored on the same computer or in the network; or, use any data mining, data gathering or extraction method. In addition, you agree not to upload, post, e-mail or otherwise send or transmit any material designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment associated with the Electric Sheep service, including any software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs.
    4. A Creative Commons license enables the free distribution of an otherwise copyrighted work under certain conditions. The license is used when an author wants to give people the right to share, use, and build upon a work that they have created. The Gold Sheep content is for your personal and non-commercial use only. The free Electric Sheep content provided as part of our service is licensed under a Creative Commons, attribution-only non-commercial license. This means you are free to remix and share the free sheep publicly, as long as you credit Scott Draves and the Electric Sheep and refrain from commercial use of our content. Commercial use doesn’t just mean reselling our content, it also means using the content as part of a promotion for your service or content, such as in a music video you plan to distribute for free to promote your band, an advertisement for your lawnmowing service, or as part of your VJ set when you offer to VJ for free at a bar. All such use is commercial and therefore prohibited. However, to reuse our content as illustration for your history paper for school, for an art project you plan to give to your mom, in a mix tape that you make for your boyfriend, to post to your facebook site with a comment, is all non-commercial use and only requires attribution. You can read more about the conditions for free content reuse. Creative Commons licensing does not apply to Gold Sheep content.
  9. Using Our Service Means Following Our Rules
    1. Electric Sheep software is developed by, or for, Spotworks LLC and is designed to enable viewing of content from Spotworks. This software may vary by device and medium, and functionalities may also differ between devices. BY USING OUR SERVICE, YOU ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE TO THE END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT AND TO RECEIVE, WITHOUT FURTHER NOTICE OR PROMPTING, UPDATED VERSIONS OF THE ELECTRIC SHEEP SOFTWARE. IF YOU DO NOT ACCEPT THE FOREGOING TERMS, DO NOT USE OUR SERVICE. WE DO NOT TAKE RESPONSIBILITY OR OTHERWISE WARRANT THE PERFORMANCE OF THESE DEVICES, INCLUDING THE SECURITY OF OUR SERVICE. We try to keep malicious actors from penetrating our software code, and have done well at this since 1999. However, you download Electric Sheep software at your own risk. If the software is compromised, your computer may be compromised. If you fail to log out or deactivate your device, subsequent users may access the Electric Sheep service through your account and may be able to incur charges to your account or access certain of your account information.
    2. We may terminate or restrict your use of our service, without compensation or notice if you are, or if we suspect that you are (i) in violation of any of these Terms of Use or (ii) engaged in illegal or improper use of the service.
  10. Disclaimers of Warranties and Limitations on Liability
    4. NOTHING IN THESE TERMS OF USE SHALL AFFECT ANY NON-WAIVABLE STATUTORY RIGHTS THAT APPLY TO YOU. If any provision or provisions of these Terms of Use shall be held to be invalid, illegal, or unenforceable, the validity, legality and enforceability of the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect.
  11. Governing Law
    1. If you are a resident of Brazil, these Terms of Use shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of Brazil.
    2. For all others, these Terms of Use shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the state of New York, U.S.A. without regard to conflict of laws provisions.
    3. You may also be entitled to certain consumer protection rights under the laws of your local jurisdiction.
  12. Applications. You may encounter third-party applications that interact with the Electric Sheep service. These Applications may import data related to your Electric Sheep account and activity and otherwise gather data from you. Spotworks LLC is not responsible for such Applications. SUCH APPLICATIONS ARE OWNED OR OPERATED BY THIRD PARTIES THAT ARE NOT RELATED TO WITH OR SPONSORED BY ELECTRIC SHEEP. USE OF AN APPLICATION IS AT YOUR OWN OPTION AND RISK.
  13. Use of Information Submitted. Spotworks LLC is free to use any comments, information, ideas, concepts, reviews, or techniques or any other material contained in any communication you may send to us ("Feedback"), including responses to questionnaires or through postings to the Electric Sheep website and phone interfaces, worldwide and in perpetuity without further compensation, acknowledgement or payment to you for any purpose whatsoever including, but not limited to, developing, manufacturing and marketing products and creating, modifying or improving the Electric Sheep service.
  14. Customer Support. To find more information about our service and its features, or if you need assistance with your account, please visit our Help Center. Spotworks LLC does not provide live helpdesk service.
  15. Arbitration Agreement
    1. Any dispute, claim or controversy arising out of or relating in any way to the Electric Sheep service shall be determined by binding arbitration or in small claims court. Arbitration is more informal than a lawsuit in court. Arbitration uses a neutral arbitrator instead of a judge or jury, allows for more limited discovery than in court, and is subject to very limited review by courts.
  16. Survival. If any provision or provisions of these Terms of Use shall be held to be invalid, illegal, or unenforceable, the validity, legality and enforceability of the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect.
Last updated: March 25, 2017