So, as I'm changing phones I noticed that they have an online synchronization service where you can upload all your data, such as contacts, calendar data, bookmarks, personal notes and so on, and have access to it online. That seemed downright spiffy - I could upload my current data, switch phones and download to the new one. Before creating an account, I read through the terms and conditions. Good thing I did.
here they are: Terms and Conditions
If you send any communications or materials to the Site by electronic mail or otherwise, all such communications will be treated as non-confidential and non-proprietary. Sony Ericsson is free to use, without any compensation to you, any concepts, ideas, know-how, or techniques contained in any communication you send to the Site for any purpose whatsoever.
In other words: any of your data (say, your notes, or synched application data), uploaded in any way whatsoever - such as by using the synchronization service - is free for their taking. This explicitly included ideas, concepts, know-how and so on. You had better not synch your phone if you have a patentable idea or research data jotted down, as Sony-Ericsson would now own the right to use it, freely and against your will.
And lest you think this is some bit of boilerplate slipped in by accident, they repeat it, with its own subheading, further down in the document:
Ownership of Submitted Content
By posting Submitted Content, you grant Sony Ericsson a worldwide non-exclusive, assignable, fully paid, royalty-free, perpetual and irrevocable license to use, copy, publicly perform, display, distribute and modify the Submitted Content. This includes the right to prepare derivative works thereof, or incorporate the Submitted Content into other works as well as sublicense the same.
Again, if you let your data into their servers, they grab a perpetual license to use it no matter what you may think.
Now, there's no chance that this would actually hold up in any court, of course. But the attitude towards their customers that it displays is disturbing and I'm keeping well away from any of their online services. Right now I'm having second thoughts on getting a new phone from them as well.