I generally don't read the terms of service. I rarely read the end user license agreement on software I use either. I don't think most people do. Which is why it's interesting when I do, to find out what is in there.

With the announcement that Google is discontinuing their Reader product, I figured I would revisit Bloglines, a site I used regularly before Reader, and also a site that contains a bit that most people never would think is in their Terms of Service.

Right there in section 4, titled ACCOUNT USERS AND REGISTRATION OBLIGATIONS, we see this gem:

Additionally, you agree that if you provide false information to obtain access to Bloglines, WYBS will be entitled to collect from you liquidated damages of $1000 per violation or actual damages incurred by WYBS or its partners.

Now there is no real definition as to what "false information" entails, and I closed my account with Bloglines a while back, meaning I don't have one that I can investigate to find out. It could be as mundane as if you provide a false answer to a secret question. Or maybe a false email address.

I don't know - maybe they just thought they would be funny and see if anyone noticed, like this guy who actually read an EULA. He might have been the first.

Whatever the case, it seems a little odd to me that they would charge you for potentially providing false information. Maybe we should be reading a little more closely rather than just clicking through.

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