New Discord TOS binds you to forced arbitration - Opt-Out Now

cross-posted from: lemmy.dbzer0.com/post/17618684

Forced arbitration means any legal disputes you may have with Discord must be resolved through a single third party mediator, who 99% of the time is chosen by, and will rule in favor of, the corporation/Discord. This effectively removes all your legal rights as a consumer, because arbitration decisions are legally binding and non-appealable.

The new ToS goes into effect April 15th, 2024.

YOU CAN OPT OUT OF ARBITRATION. You must email arbitration-opt-out@discord.com BEFORE MAY 15TH (30 days after ToS effective date) with your username stating that you wish to opt out of the arbitration clause. Once May 15th passes you are bound to arbitration with Discord forever.

https://lemmy.dbzer0.com/pictrs/image/b7e93aed-909e-43ad-b77f-d6ca4fa0e47a.png

Opt-out before it’s too late.

Limonene,

Haha. I sent them an opt-out notice by email, and it bounced!

They are using Google email servers for discord .com and Google has apparently shadowbanned me. It gives an error message saying “The account [my email address] is disabled.” but I have never created a Google or Gmail account, and my email address is on a domain not associated with Google at all.

So I’ve completed my obligation to opt-out. Discord will have no record of it, but I have the email server logs to prove I sent it.

If, in the future, anyone needs to sue Discord and forgot to opt-out, feel free to use this same excuse.

empireOfLove2, (edited )
@empireOfLove2@lemmy.dbzer0.com avatar

Classic. Assuming that’s the email you registered your discord account works, wonder how that domain blacklist even works if it’s your primary login. It must have been added after you registered.

That’s a major problem with any non-standard email domain names… They’re always at risk of being blacklisted by the big names due to “spam” (which conveniently entrenches the power of the big player domains like google). It basically means you can’t ever self host email because many large sites will auto blacklist EVERY email server until approved.

Cyberflunk,

Discord is such a cancer, happy to kill my account

Gamers_Mate, (edited )

Wait I already opted out of arbitration 5 or 6 years ago do I need to do it again?

JakJak98,

Can’t hurt to sent a 20 second email

corsicanguppy,

Welp, killed the account.

Honestly, I wasn’t getting much value out of it, so it made sense.

eronth,

Super weird. I remember opting out of arbitration with them years ago… Like, 5+ years ago. Seems funky that they could just require me to opt out again.

ipkpjersi,

Of course they do, anything to make it worse lmao

merthyr1831,

My “you cannot sue me for anything illegal ive done” clause is making people ask a lot of questions about illegal things that ive done that are answered by my “you cannot zue me for anything illegal ive done” clause

Ignacio, (edited )
Ignacio avatar

Settling disputes between you and Discord

Informal resolution. Most disputes can be resolved informally, so if you have an issue with the services, you agree to reach out to us before initiating a lawsuit or arbitration. This requires emailing disputes@discordapp.com written notice (‘Written Notice’), which must include: (1) your name; (2) the email address or phone number associated with your Discord account; (3) a detailed description of the issue, and (4) how you’d like to resolve it. If the dispute is not resolved within sixty (60) days after receipt of the Written Notice, you and Discord agree to resolve any remaining dispute through further informal discussions or one of the formal dispute resolution provisions below. You must engage in this informal resolution process before starting any formal dispute resolution unless exempted by law. Applicable statutes of limitations and due dates for arbitration filing fees or other deadlines will be tolled upon receipt of the Written Notice to disputes@discordapp.com, while the parties attempt informal resolution.

If you reside in the European Union, you may also be entitled to submit your complaint to the European Commission’s Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) Platform or the Out-of-Court Dispute Settlement (‘OCDS’) mechanism under DSA Article 21. ODR allows EU consumers to resolve disputes related to the online purchases of goods and services without going to court. Note that a submission to the ODR or via the OCDS mechanism alone, without submitting a Written Notice to disputes@discordapp.com, will not toll the applicable statutes of limitations or other deadlines.

Governing law and jurisdiction. The Federal Arbitration Act, federal arbitration law, and California law will apply to these terms and any disputes related to these terms or our services, regardless of conflict of laws rules. Any dispute that is not subject to arbitration will be resolved exclusively in the state or federal courts in San Francisco County, California, and you and Discord both consent to venue and personal jurisdiction in these courts.

If you are a consumer who resides in the European Union, this clause and these conditions generally do not affect any mandatory consumer rights you may have under your local law, and all disputes arising in connection with the services or these conditions shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the court of Amsterdam (The Netherlands) or, if you are a consumer, to the closest court to your home if you are in a state member of the Europan Union.


THIS. Now, next time anyone posts something, think a little bit more about the rest of the world, because we exist too. US is not the only place here.

Cringe2793,

I wish people paid more attention to Asia as well haha. At least y’all get mentioned.

el_abuelo,

Why? You only have checks notes the majority of the world’s population.

daddyjones,
@daddyjones@lemmy.world avatar

Am I right in thinking this only applies to US users?

WallEx,

I dont think this would fly in the EU, but will opt out just in case

hamid, (edited )

deleted_by_author

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  • WallEx,

    So?

    Jordan_U,

    One key problem with forced arbitration clauses is that company chooses and pays the “neutral” arbiter, who is inevitably biased against the consumer.

    philpo,

    Lol,no. European civil law knows arbitration very well and it’s literally mentioned in the clauses of Discord here. European civil law absolutely knows law suits, but they are not based on case-law and far less based on judge-made law compared to the common law system.

    h3mlocke,

    Bruh you’re high

    ipkpjersi,

    It wouldn’t surprise me if that were the case, US doesn’t seem to be very consumer-friendly.

    PresidentCamacho,

    We’re only billionaire friendly.

    el_abuelo,

    Such a shame your billionaires aren’t friendly

    PresidentCamacho,

    You cant become a billionaire ethically, so its difficult to imagine that any of them are.

    el_abuelo,

    Exactly

    flumph,
    @flumph@programming.dev avatar

    Yeah. The arbitration section of the agreement specifically says it only applies to US residents.

    wabafee,
    @wabafee@lemmy.world avatar

    I smell Discord about to do a Reddit thing.

    hamid, (edited )

    deleted_by_moderator

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  • ToxicWaste,

    Good question, but: Why would Discord ever expect to be in a lawsuit or arbitration with you? Most people, like you, use it to chat with people they barely know and give them no money. Still discord think it is necessary to take away legal rights from all their users.

    hamid, (edited )

    deleted_by_moderator

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  • ToxicWaste,

    @Baleine already mentioned one. And it does not really matter what the can do specifically to you. It matters what they can do and that you have no control. If you want to know what people can do with just your username look at this project: github.com/sherlock-project/sherlock. Now imagine what someone with more data can do.

    Baleine,
    @Baleine@jlai.lu avatar

    Because once you sign this TOS nothing’s stopping them from doing the most obnoxious and illegal business practices to you and you’ll be fucked. Like getting you into a lifetime contract of nitro or whatever, you really can’t trust a for profit company with this stuff

    WallEx,

    “I dont need rights, because i anyways dont exercise them”

    Good on you, but what about the rest of us? Ever think that this law is not tailored to you?

    magnusrufus,

    Serious question if you know you don’t engage with discord deeply why do you think anyone here should care about your pointless question?

    hamid, (edited )

    deleted_by_author

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  • magnusrufus,

    You just made that up.

    Sanctus,

    So Matrix exodus? Please?

    0x0,

    XMPP exodus

    philpo,

    Tbh, more like Revolt Exodus,sadly.

    While Matrix clearly is the superb system and I would absolutely love to see people to migrate to it, but I have a feeling that people will use the solution that comes the closest to what they are used to - which is revolt at this point.

    But revolt,imho, is not quite there yet and would very likely collapse under the increasing pressure on their ressources, just like many Lemmy or Mastodon servers did back in the day - but revolt is far less decentralized.

    Which would send people straight back to Discord.

    A shame,really, Matrix is clearly the better system,but VoIP/Video/Community building is not quite there yet. It might be with Element X,but we will see. Maybe I am wrong and I would love to be wrong here - I actually operate a small Matrix server and it’s a fantastic system.

    far_university1990, (edited )

    Interesting: Revolt maybe open to federation, but not any priority (developers.revolt.chat/faq/federation). Also creates problems with privacy goal.

    Maybe revolt interface with matrix backend (like matrix bridge, but other way around) could take pressure off revolt and onto matrix server? And i read about discord matrix bridge, maybe use to „export“ chat to matrix then use them in revolt? No clue of their system though if that could even work.

    philpo,

    The way I understood revolt their idea of federation was more between different Revolt instances, but it’s not a hugely discussed topic over there.

    The frontend would be no issue Matrix-wise, it’s not that difficult to build a Discord like client for Matrix if the actual backend would support the necessary features - which currently is not the case.

    The Bridge (I run one myself) is only good to use it as long as you use still Discord,so more for a migratory phase,yes. And technically it’s against their TOS,so it could end up bad for larger communities.

    Anyway, it’s clear that at least FOSS projects should definitely not work with Discord as a repository or support channel anymore.

    far_university1990,

    The way I understood revolt their idea of federation was more between different Revolt instances, but it’s not a hugely discussed topic over there.

    Yes, also thought so.

    The frontend would be no issue Matrix-wise, it’s not that difficult to build a Discord like client for Matrix if the actual backend would support the necessary features - which currently is not the case.

    No meant revolt (backend) talk to matrix (backend), not alt front end. Like for handle lot of user data on matrix side and revolt only sync when done processing. Thought maybe help with load balance away from revolt and onto many different matrix server.

    Or bridge from matrix to revolt for similar purpose. Not too many user on revolt side, can offload user load to matrix and still connect large community. Or does bridge take same performance as process message as if on own server?

    Anyway, it’s clear that at least FOSS projects should definitely not work with Discord as a repository or support channel anymore.

    Fuck that, discord not a forum. Black hole of information, opposite of what support channel need to be.

    ArchAengelus,

    Relevant instructions:

    Opt-out. You can decline this agreement to arbitrate by emailing an opt-out notice to arbitration-opt-out<at>discord.com within 30 days of April 15, 2024 or when you first register your Discord account, whichever is later

    I had to ask bing copilot how to write the opt out email. Here’s a template for everyone to use.

    
    <span style="color:#323232;">Subject: Opt-Out of Discord Arbitration Clause
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">Dear Discord Legal Team,
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">I am writing to formally opt out of the arbitration clause outlined in your Terms of Service. I do not wish to be bound by the arbitration provisions.
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">Please confirm my opt-out status via email.
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">Thank you for your attention to this matter.
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">Sincerely,
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">[Your Full Name]
    </span><span style="color:#323232;">[Your Discord Username]
    </span>
    
    ripcord,
    @ripcord@lemmy.world avatar

    Why did you have to ask copilot to write that simple email…?

    ArchAengelus,

    In short, I don’t write formal documents often in my role as a software engineer.

    There are any number of ways that an opt-out message could be too ambiguous to be legally interpreted. For example, if you just send the message saying “no thanks, I don’t want to use arbitration”, but forget to identify yourself in a way that is meaningful to the other party, it may not hold up in any proceedings.

    For example, either your legal name or username may be required, or both, depending on whether you need to prove you are/were a user at the time of opt-out.

    Specifying the confirmation is helpful as well in a normal document that someone reads.

    Several other companies have made opt outs that you have to send paper mail for as a way to raise the barrier of rejection.

    People are lazy. I am lazy. I asked a resource to do it for me and shared the results to help others like me. This helps reduce the barrier to people who would like to opt out but can’t be bothered to figure out how to write that email.

    h3mlocke,

    wHy dId yOu hAvE tO aSk cOpIlOt tO wRiTe tHaT sImPlE eMaIl…?

    fixed iT for yOu

    ToxicWaste,

    Yes but No. For most people writing this kind of mail should not be a problem. However, for many different reasons it can become difficult to write such things: This mail is some kind of formal letter and alters a contract. Let’s imagine someone with a learning disability, they may be able to sign up for a online service, as they have done it many times. Writing a formal letter they may not have done many times and they cannot map past experiences the same way as a neurotypical person.

    Depending on the local law this may be a reason why forced arbitration has to be opt-in: Typically the law should protect the weaker party. As the barrier for writing this letter is higher than the sign-up process, there is an argument that the chosen opt-out process of discord is targeted against some of their weakest customers.

    Kissaki,

    Citing the username alone should be enough. The email address is explicitly named for this use case only.

    Gamers_Mate,
    theherk,

    Also, eat shit and get fucked, tossers.

    Kissaki,

    Given that their mediation is binding to discord too, depending on the mediator, it can be a good thing for customers too.

    EncryptKeeper,

    If it was in the customers favor, they wouldn’t be doing it lol.

    Kissaki,

    Court and lawyers has a much higher cost before court than arbitration. That goes for both their customers and themselves.

    sugar_in_your_tea,

    And surely the customer could choose their arbitration in lieu of court, no? So opting out doesn’t really cost the consumer anything, it merely adds options.

    Kissaki,

    Opting out may be the safe way. But I have to wonder if that clause would be binding. ToS can’t overrule law.

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