Why did Koodo make a change to my service without asking me? How do I reverse it?

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My husband and I share a Koodo account. My phone has a data plan. His is an old style phone without any capacity to use data. Yesterday, Koodo texted my husband's number to tell him he was getting a gigabyte of data free. I looked at our account on line and saw that we are being charged for this change $2/month. There didn't seem to be a way to reverse this change. I tried calling support, opted for the callback at a specific date and time - did not get a callback. Now I am hold with an estimated 60 minute wait time and a promise to charge me $10 for any changes made by a rep - even though neither of us asked for or want this change. I would like a Koodo rep to get back to me on this as soon as possible.
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elbalk

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  • angry, ripped off and frustrated

Posted 2 weeks ago

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Mats

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Does this post explain what happened? You should not have been charged $2. Maybe there is a $2 data block add on on his account.

https://community.koodomobile.com/koodo/topics/faq-s-about-1gb-of-free-data-for-2-months-offered-to-...
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Suzan

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Well I have been on hold for 40 minutes and counting for the same reason.  I too do not use data with my phone.  This is ridiculous.  And trust me, I won't be paying a $10 charge to reverse something I did not ask for.
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Dinh, Mobile Master

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You could remove the add on bonus in your selfserve. You don't have to call to ask someone to do it for you ($10 might apply or they might waive it)
(Edited)
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elbalk

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It is not a bonus - it is an "opt-out" marketing tactic. Here is an article that explains it better than I can:

https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/how-to-get-users-agreement-with-the-opt-in-opt...

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elbalk

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I am not sure if the link will show up. So here is the title of the piece:
How to Get Users’ Agreement with the Opt-in/Opt-out Dance
It shows up on the Interactive Design Foundation website.
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Lesley

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Again, it's not an 'opt out' situation. For this offer, you do not have to remember to 'opt out', it will drop off your account automatically.  If you don't want to have it on your account and don't intend to use it, remove it in self serve under 'add-ons'.  I'm sure the marketing plan is to send you another text message/email just before the freebie expires asking you if you enjoyed having data on your phone and giving you a special offer to add data to your plan.  That's typical of this type of marketing strategy/offer.
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Ranjan, Official Rep

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@elbalk - it's a $0 add-on that automatically drops off after 2 months. Was meant to be a goodwill gesture.. sorry for any confusion :( Please check out the link that Mats shared for more info, and potentially some answers to your questions.

@Suzan - you're not forced to use it, but it's there if you'd like to give it a try over the next two months. It will automatically come off of your account after 2 months, and you will not be charged. No need to continue waiting on hold :)
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Lesley

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BTW Ranjan, if you wanted to add all the free data that everyone's turning down to my account, I would be perfectly OK with that. <3
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elbalk

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That's what I said. But it's not for us data-users, it's an "opt-out" marketing tactic to get people onto a service they didn't want or need. Check out this link:

It is not a bonus - it is an "opt-out" marketing tactic. Here is an article that explains it better than I can:

https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/how-to-get-users-agreement-with-the-opt-in-opt...
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elbalk

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I am not sure if the link will show up. So here is the title of the piece:
How to Get Users’ Agreement with the Opt-in/Opt-out Dance
It shows up on the Interactive Design Foundation website.
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Lesley

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I don't have data, that's why I got the offer.  Now I have FREE data, yay me!  And I don't have to remember to 'opt-out' at the end of the freebie, I can just choose to not sign up for the deal they will ultimately offer me just before the freebie expires.
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srlawren

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@ebalk it's not an Opt-out--at the end of the free duration, the add-on automatically removes itself.  You'd have to opt-in by manually re-adding the add-on if you want to keep using the data.
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elbalk

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A real goodwill gesture would have been to add the GB to my phone - the one that uses the data!

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Dennis, Mobile Master

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I think it is to encourage those without data to get data in the future.  Kinda like drugs.  The first one is free
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canucks4life

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Sounds like Koodo dropped the ball on this one...good way to piss off customers lol
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canucks4life

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Yup and who doesn't love being on hold for an hour to get Jorge explain what happened...not all your customers visit the forums.
(Edited)
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Ranjan, Official Rep

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*to reiterate what the SMS already stated, i.e. 1GB free for 2 months, which will automatically drop off, and for which usage is optional.. Much like the other included services like voicemail, texting, call waiting airtime, etc.
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elbalk

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Then why does it show up as a potential $2 charge on the account with no explanation? Why are you making changes to accounts without customer permission? Why not give customers an opportunity to decline the offer by text instead of foisting it on them?
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elbalk

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It's not an accident, of course. It is an "opt-out" marketing strategy. I've been posting a link to a great explanation of this strategy with real-world examples but I am not sure if the link will show up. So here is the title of the piece:
How to Get Users’ Agreement with the Opt-in/Opt-out Dance
It shows up on the Interactive Design Foundation website.
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Mayumi, Mobile Master

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@elbalk
Can you post a screenshot that showing thevcharge $2/mo.
It should say what it is for .
All other text explaining that this add-on is free and will drop after 2 month.
This $2 charge sound like you have been using data block as Mats said...?
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elbalk

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So I was on hold for about 30 minutes when my the hold music stops and it seems that someone actually answered my call. But no one speaks and all I can hear is background noise like someone has put me on speakerphone and walked away. I tried calling out for several minutes before I had to give up and try again. After another 70 minutes on hold, I finally got to talk to someone. This level of customer service is so low it must be buried underneath the 9th circle of hell.

Got the "goodwill gesture" removed from my husband's non-data phone and was not charged the $10 (designed to prevent people from even trying to get their issues resolved). I asked why I couldn't get the data offer and was told it was a promotion for minutes-only customers to get them to try a data plan. Not so much about "goodwill" then. The system is unable to distinguish between customers that have and do not have phones capable of using data. Seems like that is something that should be fixed.


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Dennis, Mobile Master

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Or you could have just left it and it would have fallen off the account after the free period.  Or you could have removed it yourself from selfserve.  Or you could have let us on the community explain it.  No calling, no waiting.
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elbalk

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I did ask the community. I did get a link from someone that offered some information but did not fully answer my questions about the "gift". Interesting that all of your suggestions are ways for me to fix Koodo's mistake. How about some suggestions for Koodo?

Instead of auto-sending a "gift" to customers who can't use it without the option to decline it up front, and making changes to accounts without permission, Koodo could:

1. Send a text asking customers if they wanted the offer with an option to accept or decline by text

2. Adjust their database (add one column) to identify customers who have data capable phones

3. Employ sufficient customer service staff to get wait times down to less than 15 minutes.

4. Replace the chat bot with a list of FAQs which would be quicker to consult and far more useful
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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There was a text that went out as you can see below that was posted by @Lesley.
The gift is benign to those who dont want it or cant use it.
Koodo is a self service brand. I highly doubt Koodo will add more call center reps (believe us, we tried) and increase costs unless there are huge market share losses due to the last of call center reps
CLicking Help on the chat bot page gives you a list of  FAQ by category.
Asking the chat bot directs you to the specific FAQ
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Lesley

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Why's everyone so mad? It's a freebie? No charge, no action required on your part and it just goes away after two months.  You can also disable it in self serve if you're really that mad about it.  I think everyone needs to maybe have a nice cocktail or a beer, chill out a bit, and actually read the text message they got that tells them it's FREE.
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Lesley

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Me? I can.....
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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Hmm.... looks very straight forward.  Not sure where the confusion is happning
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elbalk

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When I went to my account and looked at our rate plans, my partner's plan showed no history of an add-on - even though he was the one who received the offer. My plan showed a new add-on which showed the GB and in brackets ($2/month). No further explanation. This left me with several questions that a sufficiently funded customer service force could have answered quickly:
1. Why is it my rate plan that shows the add-ons instead of my partner's?
2. Why is there an indication of a $2 charge for this add-on
3. Why is Koodo making changes to our accounts without permission?
4. Why was there no option for customers to decline the offer by text before making this change to our accounts?

It's not about the $2 - it is about a company changing customer accounts without consent. I went through this with Bell. It starts with a free service for a limited time that requires the customer to remember to cancel the service. A lot of people don't remember to cancel, suddenly their bill is higher. A certain percentage will shrug and accept a service and an extra charge that they didn't need before. Cha-Ching for the company - instant bump in their revenues.

There have been several court cases regarding "opt-in" practices vs "opt-out" practices with regard to marketing and privacy parameters. The accumulated research on this topic indicates that people's behaviour is very different when a promotion or a service is presented as an opt-in (requiring a conscious and informed decision to participate) or as an opt-out (requiring no immediate action or thought about whether the offer is wanted or needed).

Here's a few links for further information about this if you are interested:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Default_effect

https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/how-to-get-users-agreement-with-the-opt-in-opt-out-dance


https://www.priv.gc.ca/en/opc-actions-and-decisions/investigations/investigations-into-businesses/20...



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elbalk

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I am not sure if the links will show up. So here is the title of the best one:
How to Get Users’ Agreement with the Opt-in/Opt-out Dance
It shows up on the Interactive Design Foundation website.
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Mayumi, Mobile Master

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"My plan showed a new add-on which showed the GB and in brackets ($2/month). "

Can you post screenshot of this (without personal into)?
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Lesley

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For this offer, you do not have to remember to 'opt out', it will drop off your account automatically.  If you don't want to have it on your account and don't intend to use it, remove it in self serve under 'add ons'.  I'm sure the marketing plan is to send you another text message/email just before the freebie expires asking you if you enjoyed having data on your phone and giving you a special offer to add data to your plan.  That's typical of this type of marketing strategy/offer.
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Lesley

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Lesley

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This is what it should look like in your plan info, if there is a $2 charge you are probably paying for a $2/month data blocker already which you would need to remove to take advantage of the offer.

Add-ons

  • Pay-Per-Use Intl Long Distance$0.00
  • US SMS$0.00
  • International Voice Roaming$0.00
  • Data 1GB $0 2 month$0.00

Manage add-ons

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elbalk

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I did get this resolved as I mentioned above. In this case, it was an error in my account by Koodo. I did not have a data blocker. There was no previous $2/month charge on my account. Having had to fight for years over unwarranted and unexpected rate hikes with Bell, I am not disposed to accept that a charge will just drop off my account once it is there. I do appreciate your efforts to help. I understand that I can do a lot on the self-serve. What I can't do on the self-serve is talk to someone who will assure me that Koodo will not make changes to my account without asking me ever again.
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Dennis, Mobile Master

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What was the $2/month charge you mentioned in your original question?

The "reassurance" from an call center rep has been brought up in the past.  After an explanation, I do believe that this is a rather wasteful cost to hire a person to speak with a customer to repeat what was written to make the customer feel better.  If this is the level of service you require, then possibly a full service wireless provider would be more suitable for your need.

If you do feel like you need some reassurance, a screen capture of the text from koodo, etc, would usually suffice.  Koodo is not unreasonable.