Terms Of Use | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Patent Sequence Data | Acknowledgement

Terms of use

N.B. These terms of use were last updated on 16-September-2019

The Lens is a public-benefit corporation that hosts Lens.org, a global cyber-infrastructure, as an open and public resource designed to provide you with valuable tools to make science- and technology-enabled problem solving more effective, efficient and inclusive.

The Terms of Use apply to all use of the websites, applications, tools and services (“Service” or “Services”) available under the lens.org domain (“The Lens”, ‘us’, ‘we’, ‘our’) or that link to these Terms of Use, unless indicated otherwise. The Services are offered for the purpose of providing access to summarised data, analytics or metadata, and are distinguished from any API, bulk downloads, data-feeds or other web services (“Web Services”), which have additional terms.

Please review these Terms of Use and our Privacy Policy before you begin using the Service. The offered Services are subject to your acceptance without modification of the terms and conditions contained herein and all other operating rules, policies (including, without limitation, The Lens Privacy Policy) and any guidelines or additional terms or disclaimers that may be posted and/or updated on the Service. We may revise and update these Terms of Use from time to time at our sole discretion with all changes effective immediately when we post them.

By accessing or using any of The Lens Services, you agree to these Terms of Use.

Using Lens Services

Subject to compliance with these Terms of Use, we grant you a non-exclusive, non-transferable, revocable, limited license to access and use the features of the Service. The conditions by which The Lens data may be used are intended to resonate with the principles of Creative Commons Attribution licenses with a public benefit element. The purpose for using the Lens data should not interfere with or replicate the existing Lens services. You are entitled to access and use the Services to download or extract data for Acceptable Use.

What is Acceptable Use?

Any data extracted from the Service may be used in the following way:

  • You may:
    • Copy and redistribute the data in any medium or format;
    • Modify, transform, adapt or create derivative works from the data for any purpose, even commercially.
  • Provided: 
    • Appropriate Attribution is used;
    • The Lens ID is retained in any redistribution of data.

If you modify, transform, adapt or create derivative works from the data in your practice, product development, library, or the services that you provide, we ask that you participate in furthering the development of this public resource. For example, if you are using the API you are required to post the Lens logo or attribution badge on your website if you have one, or promote the use of Lens.org in other ways. Details can be found in the Attribution section. If you choose to become a Lens Partner, there is a range of contributions that we can discuss on a case-by-case basis. For example a Lens Partner can request and sponsor new Lens functionality, assist in acquiring and accessing new open data, share an open source code, provide pro bono work, enrich the Lens support content, deliver tutorials or promote Lens through blogs/tweet, and/or simply participate in testing new Lens functionality and features.

In accessing these Services, you may not engage in deceptive behaviour or use any automated crawlers, robots, spiders, or other automated downloading programs to: (i) continuously and automatically search, scrape, extract or index any content; (ii) harvest personal information from the Services for the purposes of sending unsolicited or unauthorised material; or (iii) cause disruption to the working of the Services or any other person’s use of the Services. If the Service contains robot exclusion files or robot exclusion headers, you agree to honour them and not use any process to bypass them.

ou acknowledge and agree that the web content and all intellectual property rights of any kind related to the Services, including text, graphics, photographs, trademarks, logos, videos, audio, images, applications, programs, databases, computer code and other web content including but not limited to the user interface design, layout and "look and feel", is owned by The Lens, its licensors or its content providers unless otherwise specified.

Separate Contracts and Additional Terms

If you are accessing and/or using the Service under a separate contractual agreement between The Lens and the organisation that you belong to or are acting for (the “Agreement”), your use will also be subject to the terms specified in the Agreement. To the extent there is any conflict between these Terms of Use and the Agreement, the terms of the Agreement shall prevail.

Additional terms or usage restrictions (“Additional Terms”) may apply to certain parts of the Service and shall form part of these Terms of Use. You shall comply with all Additional Terms referenced, posted and/or updated on any part of the Service you use. To the extent there is any conflict between the Additional Terms and parts of these Terms of Use, the Additional Terms shall prevail in respect of the relevant part of the Service.

Using Lens Web Services

Lens Scholarly API

We provide access to the scholarly data in the Lens via API and offer free and partnering plans.

The regular use of the Lens scholarly data, including what is available through the API, is provided under the same conditions as listed above for the Lens data, unless otherwise specified in an Agreement or Additional Terms.

The use of the Lens Scholarly API is subject to the Lens Scholarly API - Terms of Use.


We provide regular and bulk patent sequence data.

All regular sequence downloads, which include downloads from a sequence tab in the patent portfolio (for example see this link) or downloads of mapped sequence data in PatSeq Explorer and Analyzer (for example see this link), are provided under the same conditions as listed above for the Lens data, unless otherwise specified in an Agreement or Additional Terms.

For the PatSeq bulk download option, please see the PatSeq Bulk Download - Terms of Use.


When using any data obtained through our Services in a product or service, or including data in a redistribution, please acknowledge The Lens by including the URL https://www.lens.org/, or a link to a relevant search or collection on the lens.org domain.
The Lens logo image files are available in our Press Kit and must be used for digital or print attribution along with the link to The Lens website.  Please use the expression ‘Enabled by The Lens’ or ‘Data Sourced from The Lens’ and the Lens.org URL. Please ensure that the Lens logo and link is prominently displayed at the point of delivery of the services or data derived from Lens, to the end-user. Alternatively you can use the Lens Attribution badge by copying and pasting this iframe code snippet into your website.

<iframe src="https://lens.org/lens/embed/attribution" scrolling="no" height="30px" width="100%"></iframe>

For publications and reports that use The Lens data, please cite one of our relevant articles:

Disclaimer of Warranties

The Website is provided “as is” and The Lens hereby disclaim all warranties of any kind, express or implied, including, without limitation, the warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and non-infringement. The Lens does not make any warranty that the Services will be free of errors or that access thereto will be continuous or uninterrupted. You understand that you download from, or otherwise obtain content or services through, The Lens at your own discretion and risk.

Limitation of Liability

In no event will The Lens be liable for: (i) any special, incidental or consequential damages; (ii) the cost of procurement for substitute products or services; or (iii) for interruption of use or loss or corruption of data as a result of using our Services. The Lens shall have no liability for any failure or delay due to matters beyond their reasonable control.

General Representation and Warranty

You represent and warrant that (i) your use of these services will be in strict accordance with these Terms of Use, with all of The Lens policies, and with all applicable laws and regulations (including without limitation any local laws or regulations in your country, state, city, or other governmental area, regarding online conduct and acceptable content, and including all applicable laws regarding the transmission of technical data exported from the United States or the country in which you reside) and (ii) your use of these Services will not infringe or misappropriate the intellectual property rights of any third party.


You agree to indemnify and hold harmless The Lens, its contractors, and its licensors, and their respective directors, officers, employees and agents from and against any and all claims and expenses, including attorneys’ fees, arising out of your use of these Services, including but not limited to your violation of these Terms of Use

Privacy Policy

Your use of the Lens is your business, not ours.

Website Visitors

We want the Lens to be the best tool that it can be, and we are working continually on making the Lens better and better. In order to do this, we need to know what features you're using, what kind of browser you’re using, which language version and where you’re visiting from. So we collect this information whenever you visit the Lens. But this information will not be used to identify you personally. We would love it if you would tell us who you are and why you use the Lens. But you’re going to have to initiate the conversation yourself, because we’re not going to snoop around to figure it out on our own.

We collect this information using our own tracking service, we do not use third-party tracking services. If you don’t want to be tracked, then change the settings on your browser to turn off tracking – simple as that. And when we talk about the Lens or write about the Lens, we might say that “X number of searches are performed each day" or "Y percent of the people who visit the Lens use the Firefox browser, and Z percent of them use the Russian language version.” But that's it.

Email Addresses

If you want to register for an account, you need to give us a valid email address (we require a valid email address for an account so we can reset your password should you forget it). We’re not going to share your email address with anyone. But if you don’t want to share one of your email addresses with us, that’s fine – just don’t register for an account.

Personal Data 

We consider use of the Lens to be your business and not ours, and so we do not use the information we gather from use of our website to identify you personally.  Still, under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) you may request from the Lens access to and rectification or erasure of your Personal Data, data portability, restriction of processing of your Personal Data, and the right to object to processing of your Personal Data. If you would like to exercise your rights under the GDPR or to delete your Lens account, just let us know by sending an email to dpo@lens.org

Privacy Policy Changes

Technology changes, and we might decide to add new features. And so we might occasionally want to change this Privacy Policy. We’ll post a notice on the homepage whenever this happens, but it would be a good idea to check back here every now and again to see if anything’s changed.


We don’t actually handle granting all patents worldwide. Nor, unfortunately, do we have a warehouse in the Australian outback where we store a physical copy of every patent ever granted. Instead, we collect electronic versions of patent documents from the patent offices of dozens of different countries and keep them in the cloud for everyone to look at for free as a public service.

Some of these national patent offices do a great job of converting the text and drawings of the physical documents into electronic format, and some of them do a not-so-great job. So while a lot of documents have searchable full text and great looking drawings that can easily be viewed online or in a PDF, some of the documents do not. Sometimes the text – especially in non-Roman alphabets and with non-standard characters – doesn’t display perfectly, sometimes the equations don’t appear properly on the screen, and sometimes the drawings and diagrams don’t look quite right.

We do our best, but we’re limited with what we have to work with. So, if something is missing – or worse yet is actually wrong – please let us know. Please keep in mind that we cannot guarantee that the data and documents we present will be perfectly accurate or complete. Go complain to the patent office, instead.

If you’re sick, you can use sites on the internet to learn what to ask your doctor about, but the internet itself is not your doctor. Similarly, we are not your lawyer! So if you’re concerned about whether you might be infringing someone else’s patent or whether they might be infringing your patent, look at the patent documents, run your analyses, and decide for yourself whether or not you need to hire a lawyer. If you do, we hope the Lens provides you and your lawyer with a lot of useful information. But remember that they get to charge those outrageous fees for a reason, and no amount of information we can provide can make up for their training and experience. . .

. . . yet.

Patent Sequence Bulk Data

Please see Patent Sequence Data - Terms of Use for more details.


The Microsoft Academic graph (MAG) data is shared with the Lens under this license:

The PubMed data is shared with the Lens under this license:

The CrossRef data is shared with the Lens under this license:

The Terms of Use text, described above, are available under a Creative Commons Sharealike license, which means you are welcome to adapt and re-purpose the text for your own use.