32-Hour Reading of Terms and Conditions Live Streamed by Consumer Group

The average policy has more than 250,000 words, group says.

May 26, 2016, 12:56 PM

— -- The Norwegian Consumer Council live streamed a whopping almost 32 hours of various people reading the terms and conditions for a number of popular apps this week. You could say they have a real app-etite for reading.

The marathon broadcast began on Tuesday and extended into Wednesday. The purpose was to raise awareness about the contracts to which people agree through terms and conditions, though they often choose not to read the full disclaimers due to their length and heavy legal jargon.

“We hope this can help put the spotlight on a failing contract regime. Few, if anyone, have the time and opportunity to familiarize themselves with what they actually click ‘OK’ to," Finn Myrstad, head of digital services as the Norwegian Consumer Council said in a statement.

“When we also know that apps often take away our rights by granting themselves the power to unilaterally amend the contract and licensing themselves to track, store and sell on user content, it is self-evident that consumers are put at a disadvantage," he said.

The issue is universal, though the group is from Norway. They said the average Norwegian has 33 apps on their smartphone, so they selected the same number of popular apps for the terms and conditions reading.

The council estimates the average number of words used in the terms, conditions and privacy policies of many apps easily exceed 250,000. When the marathon live stream was completed, the group signed off after a staggering 31 hours and 49 minutes.

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