Can the writer of a contract attempt to trick the signer using defined terms? Is such a contract binding or void, and can the writer get into trouble for doing so (eg. for misrepresentation)? Two types of scenarios that I want to ask about:
- When a defined term in the contract carry a much narrower, or much broader meaning than the common meaning. For example, can a contract define a term "Image" (as in a picture) to mean any computer file, or to mean any image showing a red flower?
- When the defined meaning is completely incompatible with the common sense meaning. For example, can a contract define an "Text file" as a file with the
Does the answer change if the defined term, when used normally, starts with a capital letter (eg. if "SVG file" is defined as a
.png file), so the reader is less likely to suspect the term has been defined in the contract itself?
Does the answer change if this happened in another legal document, such as a EULA, where the person agreeing does not have a chance to call the writer of the document out?
.pngcertainly can be text files. The extension is merely a courtesy indicator to either the operating system or the user on how the data in the file should be read. There's nothing preventing me from renaming
hello.pngwith the same contents. And there's nothing preventing you from opening up any file in a basic text editor, regardless of its extension. Whether that file has a human-readable meaning when opened in a text editor is a different matter, one which still has nothing to do with the file extension.