Wednesday, July 13, 2016

No one reads the terms of service - study concludes

How many times have you read the terms of service or privacy policy when you register for an online service? Don't fret, you're not alone, as a study shows no one does - even such terms include giving up their first born.

Just like the cookie acceptance popup box simply trained to mindlessly click on a ok button regardless of what it says; the terms of service (ToS) became just another step we're trained to skip over when we register on any online service.

A study conducted on 543 university students proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that no one really cares about the ToS, Nearly 400 simply skipped ahead completely, while the rest simply took about a minute scanning it (which doesn't much, considering the TOS would take about 30 minutes to read.)

Should they actually read it, they would have notice that this "new social network", which they believed was real and would help them get a job, actually included things like requesting their first born baby (if they didn't have one, they'd have till 2050 to get one); or that all information would be shared with the NSA and their employers.

Maybe it's time for companies to simply include a bullet point of the 4 or 5 most important things when new users register, and stop hiding behind long TOS no one reads...


  1. why not a standard ToS like you have now with open-source software licenses?

    1. My guess: it would be standardly ignored just as well. :)


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