According to the Terms of Use of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Web site [1] concerning "Your Links to Our Site" (point #11) :

You are not permitted to link or shortcut to our Site from your Web site, blog or similar application, without obtaining prior written permission from us. (source:, link created)

This has been published on on May 30th (, but without details and Daniel Glazman wrote about it, Bill Gates and the Web. This point #11 means at least 10 issues in details:

  1. what about the Web search engines: Bing, Yahoo! or Google have a permission?
  2. a RSS feed is an hypertext link: so, no RSS?
  3. in a newsletter or email, writing the adress means creating a link...
  4. Twitter and Facebook make link: do they have a permission?
  5. many email signature have a web site URL and a link is made... change the signature of all the employees?
  6. in any modern word processor, spreadsheet or presentation programm, a written URL becomes a link: a student, a teacher, a journalist using them needs to ask before quoting the URL...
  7. instant messaging tools (like Windows Live) make automatically a link: ask for the permission before quoting the site...
  8. on forum and web pages comments, impossible to write the Web site without permission?
  9. a bookmark is a link stored in a file: do not save Web sites in bookmarks without asking permission?
  10. TinyURL are not allowed without permission...

And two more things: writing the URL but linking to another Web site is forbidden? (or linking to a 404 error page?); and what about the linkification Firefox add-on?

A web link is open, like HTML is an open format: here is what Sir Tim Berners Lee wrote about Links and Law: Myths ,

PS: on the opposite site, the Gates Notes Web site does not have that point: in its Terms of Use page:

The 1st of June on :