Microsoft, it is evil.
Posted 1st September 2010 at 01:57 PM by theZee
Updated 1st September 2010 at 02:39 PM by theZee
I know, not a revelation by any stretch but today I experienced it first-hand. How? I hear you asking. Well, it all started about four months ago when I bought an Xbox 360...
I was excited, shiny new Xbox all hooked up, ready to go and only needing an Xbox Live Gold account to finish it off. While US$10.95 sounds like a small sum, I have an understanding with my wife that I can only have one online subscription of any kind at one time. Seeing how I kicked WoW to the kerb a while back, and at the time had no other subscription based games vying for my wallet, I decided to go Gold. So I signed up and received a special deal of 1 month free with the purchase of one month subscription - nowhere during the sign-up process did it mention that this would be recurring with automatic renewal.
Moving along then, yesterday my wife mentioned that an Xbox Live payment showed up on our latest credit card statement, which surprised me, so I told her I'd look into it. Today I logged in to my Xbox account and after a bit of digging I found that my account was set for automatic monthly renewal! I never set it, I was never prompted to say Yay or Nay during sign-up, but I was pretty pissed off.
Anyway, I figured I'd better cancel the subscription and be done with it. Little did I know that what should be a straight forward exercise would turn into roughly 30 minutes of googling, 10 minutes of quietly seething and culminate in 1 hour on the phone with Xbox Live support. The reason for this being that contrary to my search results, the option to turn off monthly renewal doesn't exist, and cancelling your Xbox Live account has to be done over the phone! YES, OVER THE PHONE!
At this point I realised what I was dealing with, so armed with a crucifix, some holy water, 10 Hail Mary's and a dozen cloves of garlic(you never know) I called up Xbox support. As if to confirm my suspicion, at the beginning of my call the following recording played: “This call may be monitored and recorded, any personal information collected during this call may be stored or processed in any country where Microsoft operates. By proceeding with this call you agree." - evil indeed.
So 40 minutes later I finally got to speak with one of their reps, and when it was my turn to speak I promptly told the nice lady that Microsoft does not have my permission to use my personal details in any country they want and I do not accept their disclaimer followed by I would like to cancel my account now. She was nice enough, "I'm sorry sir, I will make a note of that....can you tell me why you'd like to cancel your account...yaddi yadda yadda...your subscription is now cancelled and renewal has been turned off". So I checked and told the nice lady that it still showed ON, she put me on hold and came back 5mins later and said it should be off now, I checked and it was.
All this because Microsoft, it is evil.