Monday, March 11, 2013

Disclaim All You Want

I sent a fairly innocuous email to the principal at Youngest's elementary school, seeking information so that I could generate invoices for each kid for the outdoor education program they're doing over the course of four days and three nights. In it, I asked for a headcount of the number of students who would get a reduced invoice because they are part of the Free and Reduced Lunch program.

I asked for a count, noting that I of course wouldn't want to know who because that is confidential. But a count so I could adjust the overall amount to be invoiced.

She replied back quite quickly, noting that the Food and Nutritional Services people would communicate that directly with the outdoor school folks.

Fine. Whatever.

But then I noticed this disclaimer at the footer of her email:

The information contained in this correspondence is intended only for the individual or entity named above, and may contain information that is privileged and confidential.  Dissemination, distribution or copying without the prior approval of the sender is strictly prohibited. If you think that you have received this message in error, please delete it and notify the sender.

I'd never seen that before on any of her emails. I'm thinking it's a new policy of the school district's. Or maybe it's a new policy of hers. Or maybe it's just a new policy specifically for me.

Makes no difference to me, of course, because it's bullshit. Both parties have to agree to such disclosure, to enter into such a contract.

And we all know that I'm loathe to ever enter into any such agreement. At least without a lot of cash buying my silence.

So, go on, disclaim all you want. And I'll make it public all I want. Because the only thing I received in error was a stupid disclaimer.

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