AOL Dinged For Making It Hard To Quit

from the customer-dis-service dept

In the mid-nineties, AOL used to love putting out press releases for every new million customers they signed up. They were much quieter when they started losing customers just as rapidly a few years back. While they’ve tried things like TV commercials designed to convince current subscribers to stay, they also went one step further: telling their customer service people that they need to talk canceling customers out of canceling on a regular basis if they wanted any kind of bonus. The program offered bonuses for every “save” that a customer service rep had — and that kind of incentive meant that the customer service folks would make it quite difficult to cancel. Now, obviously, there’s a fine line between offering incentives for retention and making it difficult to cancel — but, if someone just wants to cancel, they should be able to cancel. Apparently, Eliot Spitzer thinks AOL crossed that line, and now AOL is paying a $1.25 million fine and killing the incentive program. So, if you weren’t able to quite AOL last time you tried, try again now.

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Comments on “AOL Dinged For Making It Hard To Quit”

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Brice says:

Re: No Subject Given

There is…put in a written request with your bank/credit card company to block them from any further attempts at charging your account on the basis that they are fraudulently charging your account and have refused to stop repeated written requests. Also request them to charge back as many automatic payments as possible since your cancellation date. Most good banks and credit card companies will work hard to make you happy.

danieljoelle says:

cancel call from Hell

my ‘cancel call’ was unbelievable. The rep kept insisting that I further explain my reason for cancelling. I told him I was moving to broadband and didn’t need AOL as an front end. He kept on an on…I was practically screaming at him. Finally, I hung up, called right back, got another rep, and from the get-go acted like a mean S.O.B. and told the rep I didn’t want any crap whatsoever and cancel me NOW!. She did it without protest.
I want some of that money for my pain and anguish.

Mousky (user link) says:

No Subject Given

I found the call I had when cancelling my Rogers cellphone amusing. I called to cancel and the rep immediately transferred me to another person, a professional sounding rep who asked me why I was cancelling, what they could do to keep me, and threw some bones my way to keep me as a customer. Well, if you wanted to keep me as a customer, perhaps you should have tossed those bones when I was a customer.

thecaptain says:

Re: No Subject Given

I think this is a growing trend.

I tried to cancel my cable company service (tv only..I still wanted their internet) because for the previous 4-5 months (and for the forseeable future) we never EVER watched TV…just net, or DVDs, so my wife and I wanted to save 80 bucks a month (I had all the channels). Had NO qualms with their service.

Well, I was transfered SIX times…EACH time I had (HAD to mind you…each transfer to yet another dept had me repeat it, saying he could do NOTHING until he noted the reason for cancelling).

1 hour (yes, a full hour) into the call, I get transfered again, and that’s where the goodies get thrown at me…insane…the main argument was that if I cancelled my cable, I’d pay 10$ more a month for internet (big deal…)

After another 20 mins arguing, here’s what I ended up getting:

– Both the set top digital cable machine and the cable modem free (I was renting them before..a 10$ charge)
– ALL my channels (minus the movie networks which I never watched) for the total price of 10 bucks…
– Internet at the current discounted price.

So basically, it took 1h20mins to get my cable free essentially since I was willing to cancel it and pay 10 bucks more for the net. Saves me 70 bucks or so every month and while I still don’t watch it…its there if I feel like it.

These people are friggin INSANE.

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