Plain Language Laws & Penalties

So, it seems the EU is having a problem enforcing plain language requirements in their privacy policies.

Take a number.

California and federal laws on plain language have similar gaps in penalties. I tend not to think about penalties because the law is the law — like it or not, you have to abide by it in order to stay out of trouble (if no other reason).

Why can’t we abide by the law because it’s the right thing to do?

In my happy bubble of law abiding governments, we don’t worry about fines and cease-and-desist orders. Instead, we worry our constituents won’t understand our communications and services that are here for them. We worry about using plain language because it’s in our constituents’ best interests.

No one ever went into the government to get rich. We got into government (presumably) because we like people and want to help them get the most out of their government and, by extension, life.

Plain language laws were created to help us do that. The least we can do is honor those laws.


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