Ok, if you know me, I can go to extremes to fix bad customer service or at least let the world know about it. I’ve done it before with a bank, and believe me, they fixed their problems (some serious problems) the day I e-mailed them. Although, I have to say, it’s not quite often I come across “bad” customer service. Not often at all.
Getting on with it, everyone’s been talking about Project Gizmo, the Skype killer, bla bla bla bla bla . That’s fine. I tried it out, cool! It lets you record conversations. Checked out their ‘Gizmo Out’ prices, and they seemed cheaper than Skype (to India) that I had seen before with Skype et al. I was extremely happy, and bought a $10 package through PayPal.
But then, I discovered Skype is 10 cents cheaper. 10 cents! Nothing if you’re gonna talk for a minute, but for my 10 bucks, it would let me talk for 100 minutes than Gizmo’s 50. Wow. So I came across this page, which clearly states:
However, to allow you to test the CallOut system, we will refund your purchase if you have used less than $1 USD of your purchased credits, up to one (1) month from the date your credits are assigned to your account.
When one month has elapsed, or you have used more than $1 USD of your credit, we will only refund the outstanding balance on your account up to six months from the date of purchase. Requests for refunds should be made from the support site, where you can submit a trouble ticket to request a refund. Processing refunds on CallOut credit can take up to 15 business days. You will receive an email notification when your credit is successfully processed.
I followed it, and opened up a ticket with the following:
I just bought $10 of ProjectGizmo call-out credit and would like to get it refunded. I haven’t used any of it (yet), and the reason is mainly because I’ve been waiting for the past half hour and it has not yet been added to my account, although it says on my “account overview” that I have $10 balance. Another reason is that I just discovered that Skype calling rates have become much much cheaper since I last saw it and it just seems to be the way to go.
My Gizmo Project name is sid_yadav and e-mail email@example.com.
Two days later, a reply arrived to my mailbox:
The 10.00 payment has been refunded to you in full.
Gizmo Project Support
Wow, that was fast, I thought. Now in their policy, they clearly state:
You will receive an email notification when your credit is successfully processed.
So, this was it, right? I got my money back, everything went well? Wrong!. No refund. They took my credit away from Gizmo, but no actual refund. Now before you jump to conclusions that I did something wrong, let me tell you this: I have ALL of my e-mail IDs associated with PayPal. Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo!, Personal, everything. So there’s not at all a chance that it got misplaced. No chance. Where exactly did my money go???
I replyed to the ticket about exactly three days ago:
The $10 was taken off my Gizmo account, but why is it that I never got the payment in PayPal?!
My PayPal ID is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Three days later, still no response. Why, Gizmo? When you can so-called “refund” the money so quickly within two days, why can’t you fully refund, YES, that means give that money to ME, three days later? Is it because you think I don’t have an ‘online voice’ so I can’t do anything to your ‘project’? Or do you do this to every one of your customers who wants a refund?
You may think I’m jumping to conclusions very quickly, and that it’s only $10, I can quickly get over it and carry on. But for god’s sake, it’s a whole 100 minutes of talk time! The reason I’m using VOIP to chat abroad is because it’s cheap. I could’ve used that same ten dollars and talk to my relatives for 30 minutes, perhaps less, but in this VOIP world, even a dollar is a lot to lose. Now, please, if you belong to the Gizmo project, do something about this. If you use the Gizmo project and have previously succeeded in your refund, tell me about it (comments below or email@example.com). If you’ve read so far, I take it you like hearing people whine, whine, and whine. 😉