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TOTW: Always check the small print

TOTW: Always check the small print

November 16, 2012 by Imanuel Votteler

Small printWe’ve been moving offices recently which has meant lots of IT changes and renewals, all under time pressure to get us up and running as smoothly and seamlessly as possible.  As I quickly completed a software installation, I once again found myself agreeing to some terms and conditions I quite simply didn’t read. Why? Because they’re at least 5,000 words long, and because at least 90% of those words are undecipherable even by your average IT geek.

You or your client need the software (“urgently!!!”) so what do you do? Whatever it takes to get it installed – which happens to include completely ignoring the legal agreement. I wonder how many times I’ve sold my soul to a software provider by blindly accepting these agreements.

I propose a 20 word limit on such legal agreements. Just give me the key points in bullet form because otherwise I’d waste at least half of my day reading agreements I don’t understand, and rashly succumbing to whatever clauses they’ve dreamt up.

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