MERIDIAN Discovery Portal – Terms of Use

These terms of use, together with documents and additional terms incorporated by reference, govern your access to and use of the MERIDIAN Discovery Portal (the “Portal”), including any content, functionality, and services offered on or through the Portal.

  1. Acceptance and Additional Terms. By accessing or using the Portal or its contents, you agree to be bound by these terms of use, and all other rules, policies, and procedures that may be linked to or published periodically on the Portal by Dalhousie University, as well as Dalhousie University’s Terms of Use, Acceptable Use Policy and Privacy Statement. If you do not want to accept these terms of use, are under the age of majority in your place of residence, or otherwise do not have capacity to agree to these terms of use, do not access or use the Portal.
  2. About the Portal. The Portal is operated by the Marine Environmental Research Infrastructure for Data Integration and Application Network (also known as MERIDIAN), a multi-institutional consortium of ocean researchers and computer and data management professionals, and made available through Dalhousie University. The Portal is a web service designed to help users discover data produced in Canada and worldwide related to underwater acoustics and vessel tracking, as well as tools used to manipulate and visualize such data. The Portal does not include datasets or files; instead, the Portal provides detailed records about what data and resources exist and how they can be accessed. Users may access and use the data and resources provided via the Portal, and may submit data through the submission form or through permitted bulk harvesting protocols. More information about the Portal can be found in the MERIDIAN Discovery Portal Quick Guide.
  3. Permitted Use. As a condition of your access and use of the Portal, you may only access and use the Portal for lawful purposes in accordance with these terms of use and all applicable local, provincial, national, and international laws and regulations. You must not use the Portal for unlawful purposes or in a manner prohibited by these terms of use. Specifically, but without limitation, you are not permitted to:
    1. send or knowingly receive, upload or download, use or reuse any data that is noncompliant with these terms of use;
    2. access data not intended for you;
    3. tamper with, breach or attempt to breach the security of the Portal or bypass any measures Dalhousie University may use to prevent or restrict access to the Portal, including any authentication measures;
    4. restrict, disrupt, unduly burden, or disable service to users, hosts, servers, or networks;
    5. frame or mirror any part of the Portal, or use metatags, code, or other devices containing any reference to the Portal or Dalhousie University to direct any person to any other site for any purpose;
    6. introduce to or through the Portal any virus, trojan horse, worm, logic bomb, or other material or software intended to damage or alter a computer system or data;
    7. attack the Portal via a denial-of-service attack, distributed denial of service attack, flooding, mailbombing, or crashing;
    8. use any robot, spider, or other automatic device, process, or means to access the Portal for any purpose, except as expressly authorized by Dalhousie University;
    9. send unsolicited or unauthorized materials, junk mail, spam, or any form of duplicative or unsolicited messages, whether commercial or otherwise;
    10. harvest, strip, scrape, mine, collect, or otherwise gather information or data regarding users, including email addresses, without their consent; or
    11. interfere with or disrupt in any way the proper working of the Portal.
  4. Account. Users who wish to contribute metadata (“Contributors”) may create an account and login before accessing the submission form. If you do create an account, you must select a login name and password. You shall provide Dalhousie University with accurate, complete, and updated registration information excluding password and login name. Failure to do so shall constitute a breach of these terms of use, which may result in immediate termination of your Portal account. You shall not (i) select or use as a login name the name of another person with the intent to impersonate that person; (ii) use as a login name a name subject to any rights of a person other than you without appropriate authorization; or (iii) use as a login name a name that is offensive, vulgar, or obscene. Dalhousie University reserves the right to refuse registration of, or cancel a login name in its sole discretion. You are solely responsible for activity that occurs on your account and shall be responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your password. You shall never use another user’s account without such other user’s express permission. You will immediately notify Dalhousie University in writing of any unauthorized use of your account, or other account related security breach of which you are aware.
  5. Contributor Submissions Standards. All metadata submitted by users to the Portal (including metadata submitted to but not intended to be displayed on the Portal, such as in-progress metadata) constitute “Contributor Submissions”. Contributor Submissions are subject to validation by Dalhousie University to ensure the data comply with data quality requirements.
    Dalhousie University may, without any obligation to do so, monitor or review Contributor Submissions, but is not responsible for ensuring Contributor Submissions comply with these terms of use, nor does Dalhousie University review metadata before it is made available publicly on the Portal. You must ensure your Contributor Submissions meet these terms of use before submitting.  
    Contributor Submissions must comply with all applicable federal, provincial, local, and international laws, statutes, regulations, and ordinances. You are solely responsible for ensuring you have all necessary authority, rights, licences, or consents for your Contributor Submissions, that your Contributor Submissions are suitable for such submission, open dissemination, and for use by others, and that your Contributor Submissions comply with these terms of use. Specifically, you warrant and agree that you have consent to use the name, and if applicable, the likeness of each individual referenced or used in your Contributor Submissions, and to use such individual’s identifying or personal information as it may appear in or relate to your Contributor Submissions.
    You also warrant and agree that your use of the Portal and any Contributor Submissions you make shall not in any way:
    1. violate or promote the violation of any applicable federal, provincial, local, or international law, statute, regulation, or ordinance (including any laws regarding export control) or contain any material that could bring about any civil or criminal liability under applicable laws or regulations, or that otherwise may be in conflict with these terms of use;
    2. breach any obligation or restriction created by any contract to which you are a party, including confidentiality obligations;
    3. infringe or misappropriate any third party’s copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret, or other intellectual property or legal rights, such as moral rights or rights of publicity or privacy;
    4. violate the terms of use of any third-party website linked to the Portal;
    5. include or contain any material that is abusive, exploitive, defamatory, discriminatory on a legally prohibited ground, harassing, harmful, hateful, inflammatory, obscene, offensive, threatening, or otherwise objectionable;
    6. restrict or inhibit anyone’s use or enjoyment of the Portal, or encourage conduct that restricts or inhibits anyone’s use or enjoyment of the Portal; or
    7. give the impression of originating from or being endorsed by Dalhousie University or any other entity or person, if this is not the case.  
  6. Additional Responsibilities for Contributors. In relation to Contributor Submissions you make, you must:
    1. only submit metadata for data that can be made publicly accessible;
    2. provide sufficient metadata and context to enable other users to discover what data and resources exist and how they can be accessed;
    3. provide appropriate attribution and citations in accordance with applicable academic conventions;
    4. pay any royalties, fees, remuneration, or other money due in connection with the use of your Contributor Submissions or the exercise of rights granted to Dalhousie University, other users, or third parties in respect of your Contributor Submissions, including in instances where you do not have the requisite rights to grant the licences and rights described in these terms of use; and
    5. promptly notify Dalhousie University of any confidentiality, privacy or data protection, licensing, or intellectual property issues regarding your Contributor Submissions.
  7. Grant of Licence and Intellectual Property – Portal. Subject to your compliance with these terms of use, Dalhousie University hereby grants you a non-transferable, non-exclusive, revocable, and limited licence to use and access the Portal. The Portal and its entire content, features, and functionality, including all information, software, code, text, displays, graphics, photographs, video, audio, design, presentation, selection, and arrangement (collectively, “material”) are owned by Dalhousie University, its respective licensors, or other providers of such material and are protected in all forms by intellectual property laws, including copyright, trademark, patent, trade secret, and any other proprietary rights. Company and organization names, logos, designs, images, and slogans that appear on the Portal are the trademarks of their respective owners, and use of any such property without express authorization from the respective owners will constitute an infringement or violation of the rights of the respective owner, may be a violation of federal or other laws, and could subject the infringer to legal action.
    The Portal as a whole is open-source software licensed under the GNU Affero General Public License version 3 and includes third-party open-source software components, which are governed by and subject to their own licenses.  Any use of the Portal (in whole or in part) or a software component as open-source software is governed by and subject to the terms and conditions of the GNU Affero General Public License version 3 as well as the terms and conditions of the licenses applicable to the respective software components.
  8. Grant of Licence and Intellectual Property – Contributor Submissions. Contributors and their licensors retain all ownership rights to Contributor Submissions. By making Contributor Submissions, you hereby grant Dalhousie University a worldwide, non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, and transferable licence to use, reproduce, modify, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, perform, and otherwise disclose to third parties your Contributor Submissions, and to create copies and backups, migrate to other mediums or formats, and alter the Contributor Submissions for the purposes of preservation or compliance with data quality requirements, and you declare and warrant that you own or have the necessary rights to submit the Contributor Submissions and have the right to grant such licence.
  9. Privacy. The Portal does not automatically gather personal information from you, such as your name or email address. Your personal information is only collected by Dalhousie University if you provide it voluntarily through registering an account, making Contributor Submissions, or contacting Dalhousie University by email or through an online form. Your submission of your personal information is evidence of your consent to the collection, use, and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with these terms of use, applicable privacy legislation, and Dalhousie University’s policies and procedures, but any transmission of personal information you make is at your own risk.
    Your personal information may be used by Dalhousie University to track Contributor Submissions, to contact you in connection with the Portal or your Contributor Submissions, or to respond to communications you make. Other users, who may be located outside of Canada or in jurisdictions other than your own, may also collect, view, and use your personal information to contact you in connection with your Contributor Submissions, or to respond to communications you make. Dalhousie University has no control over or responsibility for personal information you share with other users.
    The Portal uses cookies, which are small text files with unique identifiers that can allow a server to recall previous requests, registration, or IP addresses to analyze website use patterns. You can set your browser to notify you before you receive a cookie or to turn off cookies, but if you do turn off cookies, some functionality of the Portal may be lost. The webservers hosting the Portal may also log some information about internet traffic and capture aggregate, generic, non-personal identifying information about visitors, such as internet domain and IP addresses from which you access the Portal, the type of browser and operating system used, the date and time you access the Portal, the URL of the webpages you visit, the address from a website you linked from to access the Portal, and your general geographic location.
    More information about privacy, cookies, and weblogging can be found in Dalhousie University’s Privacy Statement.
  10. Requests for Removal or Alteration of Contributor Submissions. Once you make a Contributor Submission, you may no longer directly remove or alter your Contributor Submission. Any requests to remove or alter Contributor Submissions are considered by and granted at the discretion of Dalhousie University. If you wish to remove or alter your submitted Contributor Submissions, please direct your request to Dalhousie University at
  11. Linked Content. For convenience only, the Portal may contain links or pointers to third-party websites (“Linked Content”). Any such Linked Content is outside Dalhousie University’s control and Dalhousie University accepts no responsibility for the contents of any Linked Content. If you choose to access Linked Content, you do so at your own risk and you are subject to any terms and conditions of such Linked Content. You may link to the Portal’s homepage or to other subpages within the Portal, but the website in which you are linking must comply in all respects with these terms of use and the Portal must not be framed on any other site. Dalhousie University reserves the right to withdraw linking permission without notice, and you agree to cooperate in causing the immediate cessation of any unauthorized framing or linking.
  12. Suspension and Termination. Dalhousie University, in its sole discretion, may limit, suspend, or terminate your access to the Portal (or any portion, aspect, or feature of the Portal), delete any Contributor Submissions, and prohibit you from using or accessing the Portal (or any portion, aspect, or feature of the Portal) for any reason or no reason, at any time, with or without notice. Without limiting the generality of the preceding sentence, Dalhousie University may, in its sole discretion, limit or suspend access to the Portal or terminate the registration of any user who violates these terms of use. All provisions of these terms of use that by their nature should survive termination shall survive termination, including ownership provisions, warranty disclaimers, indemnities, and limitations of liability.
  13. Disclaimer.  The Portal is made available to users on an “as is” and “as available” basis, without any warranties or conditions of any kind, either express or implied, including implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, or non-infringement. You acknowledge that your use of the Portal and its contents are at your sole risk. Dalhousie University does not represent, warrant, or covenant that the Portal or its contents will meet your requirements or that any result will be obtained through using the Portal.
    Further, Dalhousie University does not make any representation, warranty, covenant, or endorsement as to the completeness, correctness, security, reliability, availability, suitability, accuracy, or currency of the Portal or its contents, or that files or data available for downloading from the internet or via the Portal will be free of viruses or other destructive code.
    The Portal may contain content provided by third parties, including other users and third-party licensors. All statements and opinions expressed in any such third-party content are solely the opinions and the responsibility of the person or entity providing those materials. Such materials do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Dalhousie University, and Dalhousie University has no responsibility or liability whatsoever to you or any third party for the content or accuracy of any third-party materials.
  14. Limitation of Liability. Under no circumstance will Dalhousie University, nor its directors, employees, agents, partners, suppliers, or content providers be liable under contract, tort, strict liability, negligence or any other legal theory for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, or punitive damages, including, but not limited to, personal injury, pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of revenue, loss of profits, loss of business or anticipated savings, loss of use, loss of goodwill, loss of data, and whether caused by tort (including negligence), breach of contract, breach of privacy, or otherwise, arising out of or in connection with your use, or inability to use, or reliance on, the Portal, any linked websites or such other third-party websites, nor any content, materials, posting, or information thereon, or for any bugs, viruses, trojan horses or similar (regardless of the source of origination), or for any errors or omissions in any content or Contributor Submissions or for any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of or arising out of your use of any content or Contributor Submissions.
    If you are in any way dissatisfied with the Portal, your only remedy is to discontinue using the Portal. To the extent any exclusion of warranties or limitations of liability are prohibited by law, Dalhousie University’s liability will be limited to the maximum extent possible under applicable laws, and in no event will Dalhousie University’s liability to you under any legal theory exceed CAD$10 in the aggregate.
  15. Indemnity. You agree to indemnify Dalhousie University from and against any losses, liabilities, claims, judgments, awards, demands, damages, costs, fees, and expenses (including reasonable legal fees, and all actual, general, special, and consequential damages) arising out of or in connection with your use of the Portal, including any Contributor Submissions you make, third-party sites, and any use of the Portal’s content other than as expressly authorized in these terms of use, your conduct in connection with the Portal or with other users of the Portal, or any breach of these terms of use or of any law or the rights of any third party, including any infringement by you (or any third party using your account) of any intellectual property right or other right of any person or entity, or any breach or violation by you (or any third party using your account) of confidentiality or privacy obligations owed to any person or entity.
  16. Modifications. Dalhousie University may modify these terms of use at any time without notice to you by updating this posting, in which case the modified terms of use will supersede prior versions. You are responsible for periodically checking these terms of use for changes, and your continued use of the Portal following the posting of any changes to these terms of use signifies your acceptance of those changes.
  17. Waiver. Any delay by Dalhousie University in taking action if you fail to comply with these terms of use does not constitute a waiver of any rights or remedies Dalhousie University may have, including taking action or exercising any rights or remedies in the future.
  18. Entire Agreement. These terms of use, together with documents and additional terms incorporated by reference, including Dalhousie University’s Terms of Use, Acceptable Use Policy and Privacy Statement, each as may be modified from time to time, constitute the entire agreement between you and Dalhousie University with respect to the Portal and supersedes all prior and contemporaneous understandings, agreements, representations and warranties, both written and oral, relating to your use of the Portal.
  19. Severability. If any provision of these terms of use is found to be unlawful, void or unenforceable, such provision will be limited or eliminated to the minimum extent required and will not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions.
  20. Geographic Restriction. Dalhousie University is based in Nova Scotia, Canada. The Portal is not intended for use in any jurisdiction where its use is not permitted, and use of the Portal is not authorized in any jurisdiction that does not give effect to all provisions of these terms of use. If you access the Portal from outside Canada, you do so at your own risk and you are responsible for compliance with local laws of your jurisdiction.
  21. Governing Law and Dispute Resolution. These terms of use shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of Nova Scotia and the applicable federal laws of Canada, notwithstanding your domicile, residence, or physical location.  Any action or proceeding arising from or related to the use of the Portal shall be instituted in the courts of Nova Scotia and commenced within 2 years of the date the cause of action arose; otherwise, such cause of action is permanently barred. Each party irrevocably submits to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of Nova in any such action or proceeding, and you expressly waive any objection to the exercise of jurisdiction by and the venue of such courts. Nothing in these terms of use precludes Dalhousie University from applying for injunctive or other urgent legal relief in any jurisdiction.
  22. Contact. Should you have any questions, comments, or concerns about the Portal or your use of the Portal, please contact MERIDIAN at

Last updated: 2020-10-09