Report: #86594

Complaint Review: AOL - Dulles Virginia

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  • Reported By: indianapolis Indiana
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  • AOL 22000 AOL Way Dulles, Virginia U.S.A.

AOL America OnLine fraudulent billing; deceptive, rude, unscrupulous, slimy, non-service! Dulles Virginia

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Never accept the free time and cancel immediatly!

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I canceled my free service in Nov 2003, or so I thought. They said they were sad to see me go, and offered to continue the svc for 3 months for free, so I said ok, though I almost never used it. Ha. I wrote down the date to call (a week before the free svc was to end, just to be safe), and called to cancel ("I'd like to get rid of AOL, please," was what I stated).

In January, I received a "free trial" disc for AOL, and thought I'd try again to see if the svc was any better. This was no problem, I thought, until I received a bill for a credit card my husband and I almost never use. There it was, $23.90 for AOL.

Furious, I called and asked how they were charging on a free account. The rude girl said they weren't, and just sat there on the line when I asked how there was a charge on my card. She sat there!! Didn't say a dang word! I finally asked to speak to her supervisor, which obviously gave her a complex as I was then on hold for 20 minutes.

He, Christopher, was even worse than she was and said I never had called to cancel the paid account which i HAD called to cancel back in December. He asked if I had a confirmation #, and when I told him I wasn't even offered one, he told me that I was therefore LYING about ever having called to cancel.

Though I said I wished to cancel ALL BUSINESS, TRANSACTIONS, AND DEALINGS with AOL immediately, he gave me a bogus cancellation #, as I discovered the next day when I called back and found I had 3 accounts open, and the only note he'd made about my call was that I had called. Nothing else.

Finally speaking to Luis, who was the only helpful and polite person in the entire company, I was told I'd get a letter of confirmation of cancellation in 7-10 bus days, which should've been March 31. Didn't get one.

I called today 4/5, and found the accounts WERE STILL OPEN. I cannot even believe it. The credit card has been canceled and they gave me the same bogus cancel # AGAIN. I guess I'll have to see.......

indianapolis, Indiana

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/05/2004 06:17 AM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/aol/dulles-virginia-20166/aol-america-online-fraudulent-billing-deceptive-rude-unscrupulous-slimy-non-service-86594. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Never accept the free time and cancel immediatly!

AUTHOR: Gabriel - (U.S.A.)

POSTED: Friday, May 14, 2004

First, the most likely reason that the @23.90 charge appeared on your credit card from AOL, is because you used your old screen name. If you use your old screen name it simply re-activates your old account and your free trial is null. If you choose a new screen name, I have no idea why the charge showed up, however it doesn't really shock me that it did.

As an ex-employee of AOL I can completely sympathize with your situation. The main reason why it is so hard to cancel your account is because of the "SAVES" department (you know it as cancellations). The job of an employee in the saves department is to keep you from cancelling by any means neccessary. If you don't cancel your service they make a commission. They earn a commission every month you stay a member. Although the official company policy is to only offer the three free months of service, many times they will offer free service to customers for months on end just to keep them from cancelling. This of course is just the official policy, some customers had free AOL service for over a year just to keep them from cancelling.

The trick to cancelling your membership with AOL is to request your account is cancelled immediatly. Yes they can do this, if they say they can't, they are lying and ask for a supervisor (which usually isn't really a supervisor, just a group of people who have shown strong skill for keeping people from cancelling). If you cancel immediatly, you can verify your subscription is cancelled by logging on to AOL in the next hour. If you are blocked, you are generally cancelled.

In my opinion AOL is deceptive in there practices for customers. Most who have called technical support know that at the end of every call you hear something like, "just for being a valued member of AOL you are eligable to recieve 6 free months of service!" Usually followed by a quick transfer to an outside company who signs you up for something like Travelers Advantage which is almost impossible to cancel. Yes you get six free months of AOL, but you end up paying $40 - $100 in fees to some program that you probably didn't want in the first place. The reason you get transfered, you guessed it, commission. AOL employees earn $.15 - $1.50 per transfer at the end of the call. If they don't transfer enough people, they get a bad review, written up, or terminated.

I was a technician at AOL and hated every minute of it. I enjoyed dealing with customers, however dreaded the end of every call because I knew the pitch was coming, and most technicians feel the same way. I left AOL as soon as possible, now I run a call center (although not nearly as large as AOL), and never ever consider treating my customers in the same fashion as AOL wants there employees to.

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