Monday, January 07, 2008

EMusic "Trial" Subscription

Edited to add: Well, that was unexpected. After I posted my rant, which was basically blowing off steam, I was contacted by email by someone from eMusic who refunded my money and explained that I had canceled my music account, but must have accidentally signed up for an Audiobooks account. I didn't think that there were two separate accounts, which was my mistake.

So essentially, in terms of customer service, I take it all back. Getting back to one guy blowing off steam on a blog is really going above and beyond, especially when I'd basically said I probably wasn't going to be an eMusic customer anyway. So instead I'll say that if, unlike me, you're more interested in a wider selection of less well-known bands and trying a bunch of stuff out rather than ala carte buying a handful of music each year, you might give eMusic a try. Because that's pretty good customer service right there.

Original post below:
Netflix, which I love, has advertising on their disc sleeves for various products and services. One of those, back in November, was for a free trial of EMusic. I'm pretty happy with iTunes, but these were DRM-free MP3s, and it had an interesting subscription/price structure that still allowed you to own your music, so I figured I'd give it a try.

I wound up picking up albums from Spoon, Gogol Bordello and Pain and an audiobook from James Ellroy, but I couldn't find most of what I was looking for, and I decided that the service just wasn't for me. I don't have time to discover new bands and new sounds while I'm paying for the time, which seems more like the focus of eMusic.

No harm, no foul. I was a member for about 20 minutes, I went and canceled the account. Wasn't really looking for the music I downloaded, but it was good, and it was free.

Then I go through my VISA statement today and discover that I was charged the $9.99, despite having canceled immediately. Not only that, I was charged $9.99 again a month later. Clearly, my "trial" subscription was still active. After being unable to find a customer service phone number (which you can find here, I guess I didn't look carefully enough) I went over and canceled my subscription again, and this time I saved the email with my cancellation. If I don't get charged again, I'll call it a learning experience, and I've still paid $20 for three albums, which is fair, even if I would rather have spent those $20 on iTunes for albums and audiobooks I really wanted.


Dexter Morgan said...

I recently had a learning experience, too. Apparently "free credit report" doesn't necessarily mean "free."

danielpops said...

I just realized i was burned by the same service. I signed up for a free trial and cancelled in due time. Then, the promotion came up again, so i signed up for a free trial again.... apparently, it automatically promotes you to paid the second time, without telling you... this was 6 months ago... so i've been charged 20 bux every month since then... i'm waiting on an email from a service rep who is supposed to refund my money... lets see how that goes