[conspire] OT?: Ridiculous licence terms

Nick Moffitt nick at zork.net
Fri Sep 24 01:23:59 PDT 2010

Rick Moen:
> Making a long story short, I ended up not participating because the
> waiver they expected everyone to agree to
> (https://secure3.convio.net/tacs/site/TRR/RelayForLife/RFLFY10CA/2007861104?pg=waiver&fr_id=20495)
> struck me as utterly absurd.

A pity this was not on paper, no?  My approach to paper release forms,
however misguided, has always been to cross out the portions I did not
agree to and initial the change.  My reasoning is that I have clearly
indicated that my signature does not mean that I have agreed to those
terms.  If the organizers let me participate on that basis, then that's
now their decision and a risk they are consciously taking.

Appreciating that I am not asking for formal legal advice, is there a
good reason why I might be thoroughly wrong here?  Common sense and law
tend to part ways very quickly.

I last tried this trick in 2006, at an event in San Francisco which was
attended largely by European and Australian Free Software developers.
The level of incredulity at the release form was admirable, and
definitely supports Rick's observation about the cultural shift.  Many
balked at the terms of art in the document, observing that at least
Australian law requires "Plain English" for any contract or waiver form.

Of course, on-line crap like the above link gets you the wonders of the
click-through EULA and waiver of rights.  I think the novelty of the
catch-22 that these often present is one of the reasons I continue to
(wrongly?) believe that paper release forms can be modified as above.

Information gladly given, but safety requires
avoiding unnecessary conversation.

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