adj. Describes a legal agreement that the user accepts indirectly by browsing an online site.
Also Seen As
Even Cory Doctorow, the digital rights activist and online champion of all things weird, includes a lengthy legal warning at the bottom of his emails. He uses the space to "require" recipients to free him from their companies’ "non-negotiated agreements, licenses, terms-of-service, shrinkwrap, clickwrap, browsewrap, confidentiality, non-disclosure, non-compete and acceptable use policies."
—Ryan Singel, “Burning Question: Why Do Emails Contain Legal Warnings?,” Wired, December 27, 2010
Third, even if licensing e-books is deemed acceptable, Amazon's conditions of use may not be enforceable. Contracts require mutual assent. Agreements posted in the background on the Web — purporting to bind users without any action on their part — are known as "browsewrap," and their legality as contracts is unclear.
—Michael Seringhaus, “Kindle: How To Buy A Book But Not Own It,” Hartford Courant, August 05, 2009
1992 (earliest)
Another type of licensing has been named "browse-wrap licensing."
—William H. Henning, The Law of Sales Under the Uniform Commercial Code, Warren Gorham & Lamont, June 01, 1992
The "wrap" part of browsewrap comes from the adjective shrinkwrap, which refers to a license or agreement inside a package (particularly software) that can only be read and accepted by first opening the package (which begins, of course, by removing the shrinkwrap that encloses the box).