Terms of Surrender

Published on July 27th, 2016

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8 Terms You’ll Want to Know About

The question of how much data Pokémon Go is collecting from players running around the U.S. looking for Ekans and Zubats took center stage shortly after the app was released this month, with lawmakers questioning the app’s developer, Niantic Inc., about its terms of use (also called terms and conditions) and privacy policies.

We at TINA.org spend a lot of time reading through these policies, which are often lengthy, deadly dull, confusing and sometimes difficult to find. The thing is, because they are lengthy, deadly dull, and sometimes difficult to find, many consumers don’t read them before they agree to them. And if they do, they often can also be confusing. So, here’s a primer on what some terms and sections mean that we have found in policies we have reviewed that you may not want to agree to after all.

1. Arbitration Agreements

You can’t sue.

2. Third Party Data Sharing

Your information can be used by anyone the company has an agreement with.

3. Negative Option

You have just signed up for repeated deliveries and your credit card will be continually charged.

4. Customer Reviews

They’ll try to fine or sue you if you post a negative review.

5. Location tracking

You’ve given them permission to pinpoint where you are and perhaps also to give that information to other users or advertisers.

6. Disclaimers

The limits of a product or service – such as that it may not actually cure or treat your arthritis, or you won’t really lose five pounds in a week or find a spouse or, well, you get the hint.

7. Returns and Exchanges

Lots of strings found in these sections that aren’t mentioned upfront, such as that you must return the product in the condition it was received – which means you can’t have opened it – or the return is subject to a restocking fee, or you have to have returned it within 30 days of ordering it, not from 30 days of when you received it.

8. And lastly, the company can change its terms at any time with no notice to customers.

For more on use policies, see our Terms of Surrender posts here.

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