Thursday, May 5, 2011

Active.com is Sleazy (Updated)


In April of 2010 is signed up for a race that used Active.com.  I may or man not have checked a box asking for a free trial in Active Advantage.  But 13 months later I get a $59.95 charge on my credit card. (05/04/2011ACT*REGISTRATION $59.95 Transaction Date: 05/03/2011 Card Type: Mastercard Transaction Type: Purchase Merchant Description:  OTHER DIRECT MARKETERS (NOT ELSEWHERE CLASSIFIED) Merchant Information:  877-228-4881 CA)


So I call the 877 number....  Press one to cancel. Refund is coming.  That was easy.

But I am not happy.  I want to know why I was billed. (I really want more than a refund)  They transfer me to costumer service and after listening to a 10 minute looping tape of how great Active is.   I get to talk to a human being.

She said that I did not uncheck the box asking for a free 30 day trial of Active Advantage in April of 2010 and since I did not cancel that I will be bill $59.95 a year.

OMG, did I pay 60 bucks for a service I did not need or want, or even know I had, last year. (Remember this is now 2011).  The customer service lady checked, but I know she is not going to find that I paid in 2010.  After another period on hold she told me they had extended my free trial in ActiveAdvantage for a year because I was randomly special.

I don't see it that way.  Active was billing me $60 for something I did not want, did not need, and did not even know I had and I should be happy.  I asked to speak to a supervisor.  She said she was the supervisor.  I told here I thought this was sleazy; billing me for further use of a product that I had not used or even know I had for the past year.  Why would I want to pay for something I never used when it was free?  Instead of reading some sort of apology script or offering to tell her bosses or giving me a credit towards a future thing I did not want, she had the fucking gall to defend the actions of Active.com, that I should have been grateful for the free year I got.  She said she would email me a screenshot of the page that showed I approved the free trail.  I am still waiting for that email.

On a similar note, I have had a much better time with other giant companies that bill you automatically.  My cell phone bill was much higher than I thought it should be.  After a very nice 10 minute conversation with my carrier I learned that I did not need unlimited talk and text,but I was using up my "data packets" really fast.  At  their suggestions I adjusted my plans and my bill went down by about 40%.

I also called up the company that provides my anti-virus stuff (I think they created viruses so you need to buy their product, but that is another rant.).  Why was I being billed $20 more for a renewal that the product cost in a store.  They said the $20 was a convince fee and that most people like it. (I bet most of their stock holders like it, not most of their costumers.)  They refunded my $20.



I have to add something.  


I am a Race Director.  


That said I want every RD to know that there are at least 3 or 4 people on your race committee that can set up a Google Checkout.  It is not brain surgery.  They only charge 3 or 4% and your participants don't have to feel compelled to subscribe to a magazine or join the active society.


There are also LOCAL companies that can do race registration.  Here in NYC we use NYCRUNS.COM.  You can deal with a human being, not a giant corporation.

5 comments:

  1. This happened to me with Active.com too. Terrible.

    Erin

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'll say it. I hate active(dot)com.

    I hate paying the extra $3-5 to register online. I mail or hand deliver my entry fee as often as possible.

    Of course, I am not a RD, so I am not aware of the convienence they benifit from this service, but much like ticketmaster, I feel like "the man" is sticking it to me everytime I decide to penny up and pay to run...

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have to add something.

    I am a Race Director.

    That said I want every RD to know that there are at least 3 or 4 people on your race committee that can set up a Google Checkout. It is not brain surgery. They only charge 3 or 4% and your participants don't have to feel compelled to subscribe to a magazine or join the active society.

    There are also LOCAL companies that can do race registration. Here in NYC we use NYCRUNS.COM. You can deal with a human being, not a giant corporation.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I couldn't resist commenting. Very well written!

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is a really good tip especially to those new to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very precise info? Thanks for sharing this one.

    A must read article!

    ReplyDelete

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