Performance Bicycle is a large retail chain that sells bicycles, components, etc. Their web site is http://www.performancebike.com/. You can be a member of their “Team Performance” club if you like. The cost is $25.00 / year.
On May 18, 2008 at 14:54 CDT I received an email from firstname.lastname@example.org informing me that my American Express credit card had been charged $25.00 to renew my Team Performance membership.
I was a bit concerned because I did not receive any warning that my credit card was going to be charged on a certain date, etc., so I sent the following email in to their customer support:
Folks I’m a bit concerned about this.
I was not aware that this was an “auto renew” account. I did not receive any warning about this.
Furthermore, I just logged into the team performance buyers club site and I could not find any place that talked about auto renewing nor give me the ability to de-select an auto-renew option.
I received this response back from Amber:
Dear Mr. Tillman,
The information is posted on the website.
So I went to the page that she referenced and found this:
Memberships are automatically renewed annually at the fee effective at the time of renewal. Consent to Automatic Recurring Charge–By purchasing your Team Performance Membership or Renewal, you request and agree that we may annually automatically renew your Team Performance membership by charging the most recent credit card you have used with Performance, Inc. The charge will be made within the month that is one year after this transaction. In advance of enacting such charge, we will send notification of the membership fee to the email or mailing address you are providing in connection with this transaction, and absent your notification to us that the charge should not be imposed, we will attempt to charge your credit card. If your credit card is no longer valid for any reason, such as that you discontinued or changed the account or if the expiration date has changed, or if the credit card processing company gives us notice that your credit card should not be used, the charge for the annual membership may not be processed and your membership may not be renewed through this process. Please therefore ask us about renewing your membership if the credit card you provided us is no longer valid (or has a changed expiration date). Contact us also if you wish to opt out of or cancel this consent by calling 1-800-727-2433, Mon – Fri 9am – 6pm EST. Consent to Use of Electronic Signature and Records–By purchasing your Team Performance Membership or Renewal, you are affirmatively consenting to the use of the electronic signature process. You understand that you have the right to have the Authorization provided to you in a non-electronic form, provided however that we may assess a copying fee for sending a paper copy of the Authorization to you. Your consent to use the electronic signature process applies only to this specific transaction and not to any other future transactions. If you wish to withdraw your consent to use the electronic signature process at any time or you wish to obtain a paper copy of this Authorization, please contact us by calling 1-800- 727-2433, Mon – Fri 9am – 6pm EST.
In that block of stuff I see that “In advance of enacting such charge, we will send notification of the membership fee to the email or mailing address you are providing in connection with this transaction, and absent your notification to us that the charge should not be imposed, we will attempt to charge your credit card.”
Well, I did not receive this advance warning or notification. I replied to Amber with the following:
Amber I’m pretty sure that I did not receive advance notification per this term:
“In advance of enacting such charge, we will send notification of the membership fee to the email or mailing address you are providing in connection with this transaction…”
Note that the above quote came from the policy page that you told me about, term #1.
I’m hereby notifying PerformanceInc.com that, next year, if this happens again, I will contact my bank and dispute the charge.
I like Performance Bike just fine, but I don’t like being charged without advance notification.
Furthermore I’m going to post full details of our email conversation online for the benefit of others who may be concerned or confused about the policies of PerformanceInc.