Not So Great Expectations: Dating Site Returns Thousands For Lack Of Dates

from the false-advertising? dept

Online dating has obviously been quite popular for some time now, but it appears that one company may have overstepped its legal bounds -- though, it's unclear why those legal bounds are there in the first place. The company, Great Expectations, apparently set expectations a little too high. The service, which started out nearly thirty years ago as one of those video dating services, has moved into the online world in a big way, and apparently thought that let it off the hook of the NY State "Dating Services Law." A judge thought otherwise and is forcing the company to refund the fees of two women, which could open up many, many more lawsuits. The company plans to appeal, but the really odd part of the story is just how much the service cost. Apparently, one woman paid $1,000 for a six month membership and met no one, while the other woman paid $3,790 for the (no, seriously) "Marriage Program." Ah, no wonder the expectations were set a bit high. State law apparently says dating services can't charge more than $25/month. Whether or not you agree with the law (and it's not at all clear why such a law is needed), it still seems like these women entered into an arrangement where they knew what they were getting into. In what world can their be a guarantee that you'll meet someone if there simply are no matches and no one wants to meet you back? If the company promised meetings, that's one thing (and one the woman in the four year program says she was promised dates, so perhaps there's a claim there), but it seems unrealistic to simply expect dates when there's the entire other half o the equation to consider. While the fees being paid (and the idea of signing up for a four year membership that promises marriage) seems somewhat staggering, especially considering the competition, it just seems like these women made a bad decision in signing up for this service.

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  1. identicon
    eric, 16 Dec 2007 @ 11:12pm

    great expectations manipulation

    a big thanks to kristine for her advice. please people take
    note. i signed these documents on sunday night. lucky for me
    that i had someone to help. at the end of the 3rd business day, i sent a notarized letter stating my intentions of not
    being a member.and not to bill and return any monies that were deducted from my account. make sure you cover yourself
    and send it certified mail with a signature requirement.
    that same day g/e called me to sweet talk and make a deal
    on monday i told them that i am refusing to do this. the same goes for weds. what they will do is sweet talk you or not call until the 3 days are up. before i sent this letter
    i contacted this finance company that they use. and told them i will not approve this transaction and i spoke to a supervisor. i made this clear to them. i paid $128 to them
    right away but i stopped another payment at the end of the
    week through my bank and destroyed the credit/debit numbers.
    they persisted to call me the next day to verify my appointment with the photographer. at this point i have not used any services. the problem is they can'not take no for an answer. they will do what they can to delay the 3 days until its too late and the finance company has already paid g/e. i found out if g/e makes initial contact in nevada.
    you have 3 business days to option out of the contract. i have not heard back from the director since. they will continue to tell you this is a legal binding contract. check
    your state laws. file with the bbb, consumer affairs and state attorney generals office. i believe this to be unfair
    business practice. its kinda like buying an automobile, once
    they get you in their office and try to wear you down. when making such an investment do the research that others have experienced. and sleep on it. my heart goes out to all of you who have lost money, time and effort. even if they try
    to report to the credit bureau. i can sleep at night knowing that i did the right thing with a little help from a
    friend.
    thanks,

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