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The ultimate insomnia cure? New GDPR law becomes bedtime story for grown-ups

The ultimate insomnia cure? New GDPR law becomes bedtime story for grown-ups

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New laws aren’t meant to be exciting – but this one could sedate a buffalo.

GDPR, the new EU legal regulation on data privacy, has been keeping many folks awake at night of late – including many who work for North American businesses, since they also have to comply if they have EU customers.

If you or anyone you know happen to be among those fretting over implementing the new law, the good news is that help is hand.

As our eyes glazed over reading this 57,509-word, 209-page document, we decided it was the perfect addition to our Sleep Stories collection, Calm's signature bedtime stories for grown-ups.

The new law finally comes into force this Friday, May 25th and affects anyone – including many US and other non-EU businesses – with EU citizens on their database. 

“So many people are stressing over complying with GDPR,” says Michael Acton Smith, co-founder of Calm. “It seems so long, complicated and impenetrable. Will they ever get it right?

“Our new Sleep Story is the antidote to GDPR stress.”

It is also and even more, however, designed to be a new insomnia cure.

“Insomnia is a modern epidemic,” says Alex Tew, co-founder of Calm. “The search for a cure is a modern Holy Grail. GDPR may be our new best hope.”

Calm’s new Sleep Story, called simply “Once upon a GDPR”, invites those having trouble sleeping – either due to GDPR in particular or just life in general – to lie back, wind down and drift off to ... the sound of the new legal regulation.

“New laws aren’t meant to be exciting,” says Tew. “That’s not their role. But GDPR could sedate a buffalo.” 

Excited by the sleep aid potential of GDPR, we have recruited to narrate it the owner of one of the most calming voices known to broadcasting.  


Peter Jefferson (pictured) is the former BBC continuity announcer who became known as “the voice of the Shipping Forecast” after nearly four decades of reading the soothing maritime weather report on BBC radio. Jefferson’s voice and skill helped the Shipping Forecast became known down the years as Britain’s unofficial national lullaby and an accidental natural sleep aid of rare potency.

(Indeed, such is its fame in Britain as a unique natural sleep aid, that we also turned it last year into another of our Sleep Stories.)

“While we don’t have time to read the entire GDPR regulation, which would take more than all night,” explains Jefferson in the introduction to Calm’s new GDPR Sleep Story, “I hope to give you a taste of it, by reading a lengthy extract from the 107-page introduction, and then, if you’re still awake, one or two of the more relaxing articles that make up the real heart of the document.”

At 57,509 words, including the 107-page introduction, the new GDPR regulation, is:

  • Over 43 times longer than the American Declaration of Independence,
  • 214 times longer than the Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln.  
  • Nearly 420 times longer than the UK Parliament’s Bill for triggering Article 50, leading to withdrawal from the EU. 
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Meanwhile, we are even weighing up whether to go further and stage a public reading of the new regulation in its entirety, perhaps as a charity event.

Our new GDPR Sleep Story, meanwhile, only gives Calm users a 40-minute flavor of the complete GDPR document.

“We hope and expect that tonight’s Sleep Story will help you get a great night’s sleep”, says Jefferson in the introduction, “but we also that hope that in the process it will bring still greater awareness to the important topic of data privacy.

“So settle in, get comfortable, and let’s get started ..."

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