Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Lens API | PatSeq Bulk Data | Individual Commercial Use Agreement

Terms of use

N.B. These terms of use were last updated on September 14, 2021 (v2021.09.14)

The Lens.org platform that you see today is the product of over two decades of creative output from a team of professionals at Cambia, a global non-profit social enterprise. As a public good resource and the flagship project of Cambia, Lens.org is designed to provide tools to make science- and technology-enabled problem solving more effective, efficient and equitable, more transparent and more inclusive to everyone.

Through the Lens Equitable Access Program (LEAP), The Lens affirms and will ensure the continued equitable, fair and inclusive access to its offerings by individual and institutional users around the globe. No one will ever be disadvantaged by lack of access to Lens.org tools. If an individual or an institution legitimately needs these tools, and can demonstrate that they cannot afford the suggested price, The Lens commits to adjusting the price, or finding a way to subsidize or otherwise provide access as part of its Collective Action Project.

The Lens offers access to the following types of users:

  1. Anonymous users: Anyone and anywhere in the world, without registering on Lens.org or signing any contract, can freely and securely, discover, explore all the Lens innovation data, analyse their results, and export up to 1,000 records and metadata.
  2. Individual users: Individuals who register for a free account can access the platform with additional benefits for their own personal, non-commercial use. Such users can freely and privately access the open data in the Lens platform, save queries, set alert notifications, create and manage collections in a secure work area, analyse results, create dashboards and granularly share, track and store analyses, or export records and metadata.

    Individual users who currently use the Lens.org platform for commercial purposes are requested to take up a subscription or to encourage their institutions to do so. Such action helps sustain the Lens platform and affirms the individual’s or institution’s commitment to equitable and universal access to the platform. If you are an individual whose use is commercial, please contact us or subscribe to convert your Lens.org platform access from non-commercial to commercial use.
  3. Institutional users: The Lens provides institutions with access to the Lens.org platform for all their staff, enriched with additional institution-specific tools in a toolkit that will be growing. These tools are available by subscription through Lens for Institutions.

These Terms of Use apply to all use of the websites, content, 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 metadata, summarised data, analytics or API and data trials. These Terms are distinguished from Institutional Toolkits, API subscriptions, bulk downloads, commercial use licenses or any 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. You also acknowledge that The Lens depends on the community for its financial sustainability and to provide the Lens Equitable Access Program (LEAP). You will subscribe to a commercial license if you use The Lens for commercial purposes.

Using Lens Services

Subject to compliance with these Terms of Use, Cambia grants you a non-exclusive, non-transferable, revocable, limited license to access the features of the Service for personal, non-commercial use. The conditions by which The Lens data may be used are intended to resonate with the principles of Creative Commons attribution license CC BY-NC-SA including retention of Lens IDs in any redistribution of the data to facilitate data interoperability and reuse. The purpose for using The Lens data should not interfere with or replicate the existing Lens services. You are entitled to access and personally use the Services to download or extract data for Acceptable Use.

What is Acceptable Use?

Any data obtained from the Service by a user 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.
  • Provided:
    • Appropriate Attribution is used; and
    • The Lens ID is retained in any redistribution of data to facilitate and encourage interoperability of datasets.

If you improve the Lens datasets, such improvements can be shared with the community through The Lens or on any other public website while acknowledging The Lens. See the Attribution section for more details.

In accessing any of The Lens 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.

You 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 Cambia, its licensors or its content providers unless otherwise specified.

Using Lens Web Services

Lens API

We provide access to the scholarly and the patent data in The Lens via API or custom service options. The regular use of The Lens data, including what is available through the API, may be provided under the same conditions of these Terms of Use are for non-commercial use, unless otherwise specified in a separate Agreement or Additional Terms. Use of the Lens APIs is subject to additional terms, see the Lens API - Terms of Use for details.

PatSeq Bulk Data

We provide data on the biological sequences disclosed in patents, both through The Lens platform and as bulk data downloads. All biological sequence data is provided under the same conditions as these Terms of Use and are for non-commercial use, unless otherwise specified in a separate Agreement or Additional Terms. For the PatSeq Bulk Data download terms, please see the PatSeq Bulk Data - Terms of Use.

Commercial Use License

We provide a commercial use license agreement to individual users and institutions to allow use of The Lens platform and metadata for commercial purposes. For individual commercial use terms, please see the Individual Commercial Use Agreement. Institutional commercial use will be specified in a separate Agreement.

Separate Agreements and Additional Terms

If you are accessing and/or using the Service under a separate contractual agreement between Cambia, representing The Lens, and the institution 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.


When using any data obtained through our Services internally, 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 Cambia 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. Cambia or 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 lens.org at your own discretion and risk.

Limitation of Liability

In no event will Cambia or 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. Cambia or 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 Cambia and 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

N.B. the Lens Privacy Policy was updated on Oct 8, 2020 and is now available at https://about.lens.org/privacy/


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.


The Microsoft Academic graph (MAG) data is shared with the Lens under this license: https://microsoftdocs.github.io/MAG/Getting-MAG-On-ADLS.html The PubMed data is shared with the Lens under this license: https://www.nlm.nih.gov/databases/download/terms_and_conditions.html The CrossRef data is shared with the Lens under this license: https://www.crossref.org/requestaccount/termsandconditions.html
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.