The Nielsen Norman Group’s License Agreement

By Deane Barker on November 30, 2007

I purchased the Nielsen Norman Group’s Intranet Information Architecture report this week. It was almost $400, and you couldn’t download it — it’s 1,200 pages and 750 screencaps of 56 intranets. Total file size is almost 120MB. It came on a CD in the mail.

I bought the single-user license. The PDFs are unrestricted, but this little text file is included:


You have purchased the report(s) on this CD-ROM with a single-user license. This means that you have the following rights:

This is OK:

  • You are allowed to make as many backup copies as you want and store on as many personal computers as you want, as long as all these copies are only accessed by the same, single, user.
  • You are allowed to print out one copy, as long as this printout is not given to others.
  • If your one allowed printout is destroyed, you are allowed to print out one new copy as a replacement.

This is not OK:

  • You may NOT place the file(s) on an intranet, a shared drive, the public Internet, or any other file sharing or file distribution mechanism where the file(s) can be accessed by other users.
  • You may NOT give electronic copies or printed copies of the report(s) to other users.
  • You may NOT print out more than the one copy you are licensed for (except as a replacement for a destroyed copy, as mentioned above).

No DRM, no million-word license agreement. Just that text file.

Jakob Nielsen rules. That’s right, Aaron, I said it.