The Facebook world was aghast this week when Instagram changed its Terms and Conditions so it could claim ownership of photos posted there. What was also changed, but not as well known, was the requirement for mandatory arbitration of any disputes with Instagram. Thanks to the Pop Tort for pointing out this equally clandestine yet more nefarious change!
What does this mean to you:
Always read the fine print. Forced arbitration means you cannot file a lawsuit if they treat you unfairly. You cannot have a jury of your peers hear your case and decide what is right. You “agree” to have any disputes decided by an arbitrator, who sees the company in arbitration all the time. There is usually no appeal from an arbitration decision – you must live with whatever the arbitrator decides.