Warning re business practices of genealogy company
Just want to alert all my email friends and/or fellow-genealogists about a problem I have had with Ancestry.com, otherwise known as My Family.com, Inc. They also handle FamilyHistory.com. I just want everyone to be aware of their business practices and cancellation policies. Customer service is evidently not one of their priorities; ripping off the consumer is. I just filed a complaint with the Utah Better Business Bureau. If any of you have had problems, please report them. That's the only way to fight businesses like this. I signed up for a 1-year membership online with ancestry.com in October, 2000. I paid by credit card. After using their services for a few months, I decided that I would just use it for the year and would definitely not renew when the time came. Someone from the company called me on or about October 4, 2001 to ask if I wanted to continue my membership with the company. I told them 'no' they said 'thank you' and hung up. I just received my credit card statement for December and noticed a bill for $99.00 listed for ancestry.com. I called the number on the statement and spoke with a man named Marshall who said that while they had notice that I wasn't interested in continuing my membership (via the phone call from 10-4) I had neglected to call to cancel my membership. He said the person who called me should have given me the phone number to call to cancel. I explained that I had not received such a number. But since they had a note attached to my account that said I wasn't interested, why did they go ahead a charge me? He said it was 'in case I had changed my mind'. He said I was stuck with paying the $99.00 even if I chose to cancel at this time. I asked for a supervisor. That was Dave Gonzales who called me back and said the same things to me as Marshall. They were both extremely rude and nasty to me. I told him that I was going to call my credit card company and dispute the bill, and he said to 'just go ahead, it wouldn't make any difference'. He said I should have read my "terms and conditions" statement better, even though the company figured most people wouldn't read it to the end. (I went back to the Internet and read it. The statement is at least 5 pages long. The part about canceling your account is on the 4th page.) I have asked my credit card company to dispute the bill so they are sending me the form for that.
The bureau that will handle your complaint is: Better Business Bureau of Utah 5673 S. Redwood Rd., #22 Salt Lake City, UT 84123 -5322 Phone: (801)892-6009 Fax: (801)892-6002 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org WWW: http://www.utah.bbb.orghttp://www.utah.bbb.org
The moral of the story is, of course, 'buyer beware' - and be sure to read every word of any 'terms and conditions' of membership in any organization. Thanks for listening.