This is a bit of a nagging question for me. Let's say I'm creating a web application that allows users to sign up for some service, subject to certain terms of service. I've seen some sites use first-person pronouns for this purpose:

By registering, I agree to the terms of service.

Others use second-person pronouns:

By registering, you agree to the terms of service.

For simplicity, let's assume that the terms are readily viewable and fully enforceable. Is there any significant legal difference between the two?


There is no significant difference between the two and it is simply a matter of (modern) legal writing style.

Traditionally, contracts were always written in the third person, but starting sometime in the late 20th century (if I had to hazard a guess, I'd say sometime in the 1980s), the innovation of writing in the first and/or second person was developed and found to be more readable for most people, especially in contracts of adhesion.

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