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Origin Adds Anti-Lawsuit Language to TOS

Electronic Arts has amended it's Terms of Service to include anti-lawsuit language, following a Supreme Court ruling that prompted a similar move by Sony. Kotaku outlines the new language:

"By accepting these terms, you and EA expressly waive the right to a trial by jury or to participate in a class action.

YOU UNDERSTAND THAT BY THIS PROVISION, YOU AND EA ARE FOREGOING THE RIGHT TO SUE IN COURT AND HAVE A JURY TRIAL.

YOU AND EA AGREE THAT EACH MAY BRING CLAIMS AGAINST THE OTHER ONLY IN YOUR OR ITS INDIVIDUAL CAPACITY, AND NOT AS A PLAINTIFF OR CLASS MEMBER IN ANY PURPORTED CLASS OR REPRESENTATIVE PROCEEDING."

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56. Re: Origin Adds Anti-Lawsuit Language to TOS Sep 24, 2011, 12:45 Rockn-Roll
 
Mashiki Amiketo wrote on Sep 24, 2011, 09:22:
Remember that the average reading level in north america is between grade 6 and grade 8.

This is true...and actually much worse in some states...believe it or not. When I was taking bone-head English in college I was given illiteracy as one of my 1,000 word essays...maybe they were trying to make it a personal issue because I didn't even qualify for bone-head English...they wanted me to take English as a second language, but I my problem was that I didn't know any other language either.

I was astonished that over 50% (some sources report higher incidence) of high school graduates in the USA are functionally illiterate. What that means is they can read something...know what most of the individual words mean, and perhaps understand the meaning of most sentences; however, they don't understand any ideas or messages that those sentences and paragraphs intend to transmit. There is plenty of evidence from substantiated sources such as university studies and even Federal and State reports which prove it.

In fact, anyone that continues to agree to EA's UELA is evidence enough that they are functionally illiterate or just don't care about democracy or freedom.

As to the discussion concerning the legality of UELA's especially those which indicate that the purchaser must agree to have no constitutional rights to a jury of their peers...being nearly 54 I remember some big changes in laws and judicial processes some 40 years ago or so concerning "small print" in contracts. Many businesses used to present contracts for people to sign, which had important information for example requiring people to pay large or unspecified amounts for the products or services, in an extremely small font which could not be read with the naked eye and frequently the contract was a copy where the print was so smudged that it was completely illegible even under a magnifying glass. As I recall the courts got tired of it and funneled some law suits to the U.S. Supreme court so that a Federal ruling would be made that made it clear that any contract which used that technique would not be enforceable. Didn't anyone wonder why some of the contracts and UELA's have capital letters? It was that ruling which made it necessary.

But, don't fool yourselves...this is a game company and not a real estate or financial institution like with the "small print" ruling. This is a game company and nobody is going to care if some violent game players lose their constitutional rights in order to play some games. The only person who should care is you...and you are the first line of defense for your rights. And, yes...I read and understand every UELA that I agree to, and I keep a copy either soft or hard, so that if necessary I can refer to it at any time if I think there's something that isn't right. To be honest, it only takes about 15 minutes to read 5,000 words (3 minutes for every 1,000 words), and most UELA's plageraize other UELA's so that they are all very similar...you just need to train yourself to spot the differences. For example, I just signed an agreement to give all the rights to any of my inventions to a contract company that has offered me a job...but as with all contracts of this type it specified that it is only in conjuction with the work I do as Work For Hire with that company. I remember one time I actually started work for a company in their computer center just inserting data disks...not even a technical position, and they gave me a contract to sign after I had been working there for 2 weeks which clearly said I had to give them all inventions and ideas prior and after my work there...I circled the portions and gave it back to them unsigned...they fired me the next day. Years later I own the copyrights to a suite of programs equal to MSOffice and have ideas and inventions which include gravitational energy extraction and molecular circuits.

My point is that the future could be very different from what it is painted to be by a company. If you sign your rights away then more than likely the company will do things in the future which will cost you everything you own...because they can...and you let them. Also, keep in mind that most likely at least 80% of all gamers who read and understand the UELA will not be accepting it. So, with only 20% of the share of gamers EA's Origin service will most likely have financial trouble very soon and will have to raise it's prices to avoid bankruptcy and soon after will most likely lose another 10% and most likely fold and you will be forced to sue for your money back so you can get the software licenses validated by another download service...in fact so many will need to do that it will be forced into a class action suit by the courts...oh wait...you signed a UELA saying you can't participate...BOOM! You lost everything...whose fault? Yours.

This comment was edited on Sep 24, 2011, 13:50.

Edit: In fact, here's the email I just sent to ea:
Losers,

I decline this offer. I specifically forbid the use of my previous EA account from becoming an Origin account. I also specifically revoke any and all rights EA might have had to my account prior to this email. I consider this to be your only notice that I am ending any and all relationships that I have with EA. I also reserve the right to sue in court as an individual and as a participant in a class action suit by not logging into any EA account for which I had created or was created on my behalf in order to keep my rights to licenses which I have previously purchased.

Sincerely,
Steve Wood
 
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