john September 1st, 2013
I’m cancelling Skype. For some reason they seem to have decided that it’s a viable business model to make it hard for people to give them money. Lowe’s seems to have jumped on board with this in the last few years, which reminds me of when I was in K-Mart years ago, in the week leading up to Christmas, and they had one cashier with a long line stretching from the register. I knew then they were in trouble, and the next year they announced bankruptcy.
At any rate, Skype. Skype emailed to tell me my auto-recharge agreement will be cancelled next month because the credit card it was being billed to was expiring. So I go to the site to update the expiration date on file for my credit card, but I can’t find any “edit” link associated with the credit card.
After clicking all over the site looking for somewhere likely (or likelier than “Payment info,” which seemed pretty damn likely), I gave up looking for a way to edit the card info and clicked on “delete.” I got a message that the card was being used to fund my Skype number and I couldn’t delete the card unless I cancelled my subscription first. I clicked the link to go to the subscription info and was got the message “We’re sorry, we didn’t find any records about your subscription.”
Lower on this page was a link to “Account settings.” Thinking that maybe the ability to edit credit card information was hidden here, I clicked on the link. There was no information there, just ways to link my account to others to facilitate the government spying on me. I clicked around a bit more, looking again for a way to edit the credit card information and, still not finding it, I clicked again on the “delete” link for the credit card. I was told again that I couldn’t delete the card without cancelling my subscription first. Clicking through to the link again gave me the message that the site couldn’t find any information about my subscription. There was also a link to auto-recharge, which I followed and then disabled.
The site still would not let me delete the credit card info on file, claiming that I had a subscription but also that it couldn’t find any information about it. This time I noticed that in that grid of features, two of them were highlighted: “Skype number” and “Voice messages.”
Clicking through to “Voice messages” took me to a page showing the same information as in the grid on the previous page, but this time in a line. I had to click on “Voice messages” again to get the option to disable it. I disabled it.
Then I clicked on “Skype number.” There was no option to disable it, just a small link to “Settings.” On this page I was again warned that my card was expiring soon and that I should change my payment method. Clicking through to the link did indeed give the option of changing my payment method, but not a way of editing the method already on file.
On this page there was a small link saying “Cancel Skype number.” Clicking on this showed that the Skype number is considered a subscription: “Your subscription will remain active until the expiry date.”
I clicked “Yes, cancel subscription” and was taken to a page saying that my subscription was cancelled and also that my credit card was expiring soon and I should change my payment method. There was no link to delete the credit card information on file, even though I’d presumably cancelled all my subscriptions.
There was also no link to other areas of the site having to do with my account, and clicking on “Skype” at the top took me to skype.com, but with me apparently logged out. I clicked the back arrow until I was on a page with a link to the existing credit card information.
This time when I clicked “delete” I was given a confirmation message. I clicked “delete.”
I’m not sure why any business would make it so difficult for customers to give them money, but–like Lowe’s–they probably want to rethink that.