I would like to know if any legal penalty can be applied against any of the answers/comments posted on the site or if there is any history involving legal action against any of the information posted here.

I know that we are working for free and trying to help users voluntarily on the site but imagining that some solutions can cause more problems then they solve, and some if not followed by the letter / miss interpreted / badly written can cause data loss there should be some information about the legality of the information posted on the site.

Is there any?


Lets assume that in a good will I tell a user that the command to remove a dir that is is not longer necessary is sudo rm -rf /opt/something_something and because I mistyped or the user miss read the format he ended up typing sudo rm -rf / opt/something_something.

(I know that it does not work and you get a warning, but you get the picture)

He gets pissed for either reasons and finds it fair to start a legal action against me and AskUbuntu. Should one worry about this? is there a agreement on the site that protects us from legal action?

1 Answer 1


There is a warranty statement in the legal gubbins that every user here implicitly claims to have read in order to use the site (I see you were paying attention!) that essentially says: there's no guarantee anything here will work.

The Services, Content, Network and any Software are provided on an "as is" basis, without warranties of any kind, either express or implied, including, without limitation, implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose or non-infringement. Stack Exchange makes no representations or warranties of any kind with respect to the Network, the Services, including any representation or warranty that the use of the Network or Services will (a) be timely, uninterrupted or error-free or operate in combination with any other hardware, software, system or data, (b) meet your requirements or expectations, (c) be free from errors or that defects will be corrected, (d) be free of viruses or other harmful components.

The site is self-protecting to some degree and hopefully most people will edit or vote down an answer that they can see is nonsense, or query an answer that they can't understand.

I'm sure it will happen one day and it won't be innocent as you suggest. It'll be a fork bomb or a system-killer but whoever posts it will be reported to their ISP and local police and hopefully locked in a box until they learn that messing up people's computers is not funny.

  • To tell you the truth I dont even remember how I ended up here much less the legal agreement that I for sure read and forgot about it! ;) Thanks for the answer. Dec 12, 2011 at 21:11
  • 2
    I don't know about you guys but am suing Oli for points. Dec 16, 2011 at 16:57

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