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CEO of WhatsApp faces jail for failing to provide terms and conditions in German

By Mason White 4:14 AM May 19, 2016

By: Feng Qian
A judge has ordered WhatsApp to translate their terms and conditions to German or face a fine and jail time, according to court proceedings in Germany.

The court in Berlin, warned WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum that he could face jail unless the company moves quickly to provide its terms and conditions in the German language.

The case began when the Federation of Consumer Protection Offices dragged WhatsApp to court, complaining that no one was identified as a representative of the company in Germany.

It also complained that email was the only way for users to communicate with the company, and that the terms and conditions were not in German.

The Berlin court has ruled in favor of the consumer advocates.

The judges ruled that WhatsApp should offer a second means of communication and translate its terms and conditions to German or face a fine 250,000 euros ($281,850) or imprisonment of its CEO for six months.

The judges said that not providing the terms and conditions in German was a disproportionate disadvantage for users.