Your user name may not be discriminating, unethical or otherwise offensive and may not contain a name.
-LEGO, on changes to their terms of service.
The fine people at The Lego Group dropped me a line to remind me that they have changed their terms of services.
They were concerned apparently because I had not yet read and accepted them. Literal truth.
You are receiving this email because we have changed our user terms for your LEGO ID and we can see that you haven’t read and accepted them yet.
I haven’t read or accepted them because I haven’t logged on to anything LEGO or LEGO related in a while. My daughter is now a teenager and far more interested in makeup, clothes, and what her friends are posting on Instagram than getting plastic blocks and building things. She does occasionally get wistful when she sees the LEGO minifigures… she keeps the golden C3P-0 on her desk… but not enough to actually dust them off and do something with them. I should go do another minifigure roundup this year and drag her along.
Anyway, The Lego Group was kind enough to append a short list of the items that they felt were the most important of the changes to the terms. Number one on the list is quoted at the top of this post, and it makes my head hurt.
I get “discriminating,” though through the quirkiness of the English language and custom, we tend to use that word to indicate a positive. If you have “discriminating taste” it is a good thing, right? So I might have phrased that differently… maybe “promotes discrimination” since “discrimination” is the usage that is always negative… but I get what they were shooting for. Marketing and legal probably spent hours on that word alone.
I can also see “unethical.” If you pick a user name that makes you look like an employee of The Lego Group, that would be well on the way towards “unethical,” though I still think you have to try and use it to misrepresent yourself intentionally before we get fully in the zone. Whatever, I get it.
“Offensive” is a minefield in this day and age. I dare anybody to come up with a workable definition of what “offensive” means in a world where people are offended that somebody has the last name “Lynch.” But they have to cover themselves, and now they can site this statement if somebody complains about. Yet again, I get it.
But then we get to the last phrase in that sentence (which should be separated with an Oxford comma dammit) and I start to think that they are trolling me. My user name, the name with which I identify myself on the LEGO site, must not contain a NAME?
I might understand “must not contain your real name” or “must not include your surname” as stipulations, but they appear to be literally saying, “Your name… it may not be a name.” That quote at the top, it is directly from the section of the terms to which the user is specifically required to agree.
If I go with all numbers, will that still be a name? It all seems pretty silly to me.