Big Data Art: Printed Visualizations Highlight Daunting Tech “Terms of Service”

Everyone knows that actually reading a “terms of service” agreement is rarely (if ever) done by consumers using large digital platforms, but there is something powerful about seeing just how overwhelming this task is in print.

Artist Dima Yarovinsky installed a series of these covering Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and Tinder on normal-width rolls of paper, creating infographics to display at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design.

Titled simply “I AGREE,” the resulting sheets are so long that, even hung up high toward the ceiling, they roll off the wall and onto the floor below.

Per Dima: the average person reads at a rate of 200 words per minute and the average terms-of-service features close to 12,000 words, meaning they would take about an hour to read (assuming the reader didn’t stumble on all the obscure legalese).

By setting it in a standard font in physical space, it becomes much easier to see just how long these agreements are, and what corporations are forcing on those who would use their services.