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Roku will disable your TVs and devices until you agree to its new terms

Published Mar 6th, 2024 6:09PM EST
Roku disables devices until you agree to its new terms.
Image: Roku

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Blindly consenting to terms and conditions is something most of us have been guilty of at some point, but it’s not often that companies completely cut off our access to their products or services until we agree. That’s precisely what Roku appears to be doing with its latest Dispute Resolution Terms, and some users are understandably displeased.

For TechCrunch this week, Devin Coldewey explained that he received the following email from Roku the day before the new terms hit his Roku TV.

According to the email: “We wanted to let you know that we have made changes to our Dispute Resolution Terms, which describe how you can resolve disputes with Roku. We encourage you to read the updated Dispute Resolution Terms. By continuing to use our products or services, you are agreeing to these updated terms.”

Nothing out of the ordinary there, but when he turned on his TV the next day, he was presented with a pop-up about the update. The only options the pop-up provided were to agree to the new terms or to view them before agreeing. Coldewey attempted to view the terms first and go back, but he somehow ended up agreeing to them unintentionally.

Hundreds of users have since taken to the Roku community forums to express their disapproval. Owners of Roku’s standalone streaming devices, as well as its TVs, were being forced to agree to something that wasn’t presented to them plainly. Even worse, their devices were essentially bricked until they agreed to the updated dispute resolution terms.

Anyone who really wants to opt out has 30 days to do so, but it will require quite a bit of effort. If you want to opt out of these terms, you’ll have to send written notice of your decision by mail to Roku’s offices in San Jose, California, within 30 days of agreeing.

Here’s proof from Roku community member AJCxZ0, who took a picture of the terms:

How to opt out of Roku's new Dispute Resolution Terms.
How to opt out of Roku’s new Dispute Resolution Terms. Image source: AJCxZ0/Roku Community Forums

Prior to this incident, it would have been hard to imagine anyone actually taking the time to opt out of the terms. But now dozens of irritated Roku customers are suddenly motivated to do just that. What an odd decision from the company.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.