Hangouts and Hangouts Chat Acceptable Use Policy
Our policies play an important role in maintaining a positive experience for our users. Please follow these policies when using Hangouts and Hangouts Chat (collectively, 'Hangouts'). Make sure that you check from time to time, as these policies may change. Please also refer to Google’s Terms of Service for more information.
Spam and commercial use
Do not send or facilitate the transmission of spam, large numbers of commercial messages, or automated messages or calls. Spam includes, but is not limited to, unwanted promotional or commercial content and unwanted or mass solicitation. Do not make calls that violate laws that prohibit unsolicited marketing calls (e.g. 'Do not call' laws).
Learn more about Google's efforts to fight spam and how to block users in Hangouts.
Fraud, phishing and other deceptive practices
Do not use Hangouts for phishing. Refrain from soliciting or collecting sensitive data, including, but not limited to, passwords, financial details and national insurance numbers. Do not use Hangouts to trick, mislead or deceive other users into sharing information under false pretences.
Do not impersonate another person, or otherwise misrepresent yourself or the source of a Hangouts message or call.
We do not allow the transmission of malware, viruses, Trojan horses, corrupted files, destructive code, or anything that may harm or interfere with the operation of the networks, servers, or other infrastructure of Google or others.
Do not use Hangouts in any way that exploits children. This includes child sexual-abuse imagery or content that presents children in a sexual manner. Google has a zero-tolerance policy against this content. If we become aware of such content, we will report it to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, as required by law. We may also take disciplinary action, including terminating the Google Accounts of those involved.
This also includes child grooming, which comprises any actions aimed at establishing a connection with a child to lower the child's inhibitions in preparation for sexual abuse, trafficking or other exploitation.
If you believe that a child is in danger of, or has been subject to, abuse or exploitation, or has been trafficked, contact your local police immediately.
If you have already made a report to the police and still need help, or you have concerns that a child is being, or has been subjected to, grooming on Hangouts, you can report the behaviour to Google. Please remember that you can always block any person you do not want to be contacted by on Hangouts.
Do not use Hangouts to harass, threaten or intimidate others. Do not incite others to engage in this behaviour.
Personal and confidential information
Do not distribute other people’s personal and confidential information, such as credit card numbers, national insurance numbers or account passwords, without their permission.
Do not use Hangouts to promote, organise or engage in illegal activities.
Google may disable accounts that are found to be in violation of these policies. If your account is disabled and you believe that it was a mistake, please follow the instructions on this page.
- Send Hangouts invitations
- Participate in publicly shared Hangouts or Hangouts on Air
We depend heavily upon users to let us know about content that may violate our policies. After we are notified of a potential policy violation, we may review the content and take action, including restricting access to the content, removing the content, refusing to print the content, and limiting or terminating a user’s access to Google products. Note that we may make exceptions to these policies based on artistic, educational or documentary considerations, or when there are other substantial benefits to the public from not taking action.
We occasionally modify these policies, so please check back here for any updates.
Our products are platforms for free expression, but we don't permit hate speech. Hate speech is content that promotes or condones violence against, or has the primary purpose of inciting hatred against, an individual or group on the basis of their race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, age, nationality, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or any other characteristic that is associated with systemic discrimination or marginalisation.
- Sexually explicit material
Do not distribute sexually explicit or pornographic material. Do not drive traffic to commercial pornography sites.
We do allow naturalistic and documentary depictions of nudity (such as an image of a breastfeeding infant), as well as depictions of nudity that serve a clear educational, scientific or artistic purpose.
Please note that your Google profile photo cannot include mature or offensive content. For example, do not use a photo that is a close-up of a person's buttocks or cleavage.
It's not OK to share violent or gory content that's primarily intended to be shocking, sensational or gratuitous. If posting graphic content in a news, documentary, scientific or artistic context, please be careful to provide enough information to help people understand what's going on. In some cases, content may be so violent or shocking that no amount of context will allow that content to remain on our platforms. Lastly, don't encourage others to commit specific acts of violence.
Regulated goods and services
Our products enable discussion of many topics, but we do not allow content that facilitates the sale of regulated products and services, including alcohol, gambling, pharmaceuticals and unapproved supplements, tobacco, fireworks, weapons or health/medical devices.
Impersonation and misrepresentation
Do not use Hangouts with the intent to deceive, mislead or confuse users by either impersonating any person or organisations that you do not represent, or concealing your ownership or primary purpose. This includes directing content about politics, social issues or matters of public concern to users in a country other than your own, if you misrepresent or intentionally conceal your country of origin or other material details about yourself. We're not saying that you can't publish parody, satire or use a pseudonym/pen name – just avoid content that is likely to mislead readers about your true identity.
Use of multiple accounts
Do not create or use multiple accounts to evade our policies or bypass blocks or otherwise subvert restrictions placed on your account. For example, if you've been blocked by another user, don't create a replacement account that engages in similar activity.
Additional terms for Hangouts on Air
IMPORTANT: You are responsible for all content included in a Hangout On Air which you have initiated.
You are responsible for ensuring that all content included in a Hangout On Air initiated by you complies with this Agreement, including content provided by other participants who may join you in the Hangout. Please choose participants who you wish to invite to this Hangout carefully, and if necessary use the blocking feature to stop someone else from participating in your Hangout.
Google is offering you a trial of a feature that allows you to live stream Hangouts (the "Live Content") through YouTube. The Live Content will also be recorded and automatically uploaded to your YouTube account at the end of the Hangout for subsequent viewing (the "Archived Content"). The Archived Content will also immediately replace the live stream so that anyone you have shared the Live Content with will also be able to view the Archived Content.
By using the Service, you grant Google a right and licence to host, cache, route, transmit, store, copy, modify (to the limited extent technically necessary to perform and operate the Service), stream, publicly perform, communicate to the public, display, reformat, excerpt, analyse, create algorithms based on and otherwise exploit, use and make available the Live Content (which includes content provided by you or by any other participant in the Hangout, including the sound recordings and compositions embodied therein, if any) worldwide. You agree that this licence includes a right for Google to make such Live Content available to other companies, organisations or individuals with whom Google has relationships for the provision of syndicated services, and to use such Live Content in connection with the provision of those services. You confirm and warrant to Google that you have all the rights, power and authority necessary to grant this licence.
You are responsible for procuring: (i) all necessary rights, licences, consents and clearances, including without limitation any payments to recording artists, music publishers, writers, actors, producers, record labels and all other royalty participants arising from Google’s use and exploitation of the Live Content, and (ii) public performance, synchronisation, communication to the public and making available licences, whether controlled by a local collecting society or otherwise, worldwide. You agree to comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations regarding live streaming of the Live Content (including content provided by you or by any other participant in the Hangout) worldwide.
The automatic upload of Archived Content to your YouTube account is subject to the YouTube terms of service and you agree that the Archived Content (which includes content provided by you or by any other participant in the Hangout) will constitute "Content" that has been submitted by you to the YouTube service for the purposes of those terms of service. To the extent that you have an existing Content Licence Agreement, Content Hosting Services Agreement or Sound Recording and Audiovisual Agreement with Google in relation to YouTube (“YouTube Agreements”), you agree that the Archived Content will constitute “Provider Content” in accordance with the YouTube Agreements and is subject to the terms of those agreements.
The Archived Content must adhere to the YouTube Community Guidelines.
Additional terms and conditions for the Call Phones feature
If you have a connected Google Voice account with a Google Voice number, it will appear on the recipient's caller ID. If you haven't set up a Google Voice number, a generic number or the word "unknown" will appear to the person you're calling.
You understand and agree that the Service is not capable of placing or receiving emergency services calls.
Google's proprietary rights
Google does not provide calling or connections to all telephone numbers. At Google's sole discretion, unserved numbers may include, but are not limited to, certain geographic locations, special services numbers, satellite telephony services and other call forwarding services.
Users may purchase prepaid credit to be used for the Service. Google will be under no obligation to offer any refunds or reimbursement for the purchase price of such prepayment. Usage of minutes is billed in one-minute increments. Prepaid credits are billed at the time of purchase.
Unless prohibited by law, any outbound calling credit that you have purchased will expire six months from the most recent date of use and may not be transferred.
Calling credit may be used for calls made using the Service and/or for calls made using Google Voice.
Calls are routed through, and provided by, various regulated and licensed partners. The Service is provided by Google Dialler, Inc., a subsidiary of Google Inc.