toggle

AAPL Stock: 110.15 ( -2.61 )

Printed from http://www.macnn.com

RealNetworks to set up $2M fund for overcharging users

updated 07:57 pm EDT, Thu May 24, 2012

Fund settles suit that claimed improper charges

Online media company RealNetworks has settled a lawsuit brought by the Washington State Attorney General regarding the company's practice of charging some users for services they did not want. MSNBC reports that, over the course of seven years, more than 500 people complained to the Better Business Bureau about RealNetworks' practices. As a result of the settlement, RealNetworks will establish a $2 million compensation fund for subscribers who were overcharged between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2009.

The complaint centers on RealNetworks' e-commerce practices, which were claimed by the Attorney General to use deceptive pre-checked boxes and fine print that enrolled customers in "free trials" that turned into subscriptions for unwanted services. The suit alleges that some customers were unwillingly charged, to the tune of hundreds of dollars a year, for access to RealNetworks' sports, music, television, and gaming subscription services.

As a result of the settlement, RealNetworks will cease the use pre-checked boxes for subscription purchases, more clearly spell out the terms of its subscription contracts, offer online cancellation of subscription offerings, and improve its customer support guidelines regarding cancellations.

In a statement, RealNetworks denied any wrongdoing, but did note that some aspects of the company's e-commerce practices "were not what our customers expected of us." The company has subsequently established a Consumer Bill of Rights, as well as a Fact Sheet meant to address customer concerns over the case. Customers that were enrolled in RealNetworks' paid subscription products between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2009 can go to http://realnetworksrestitution.com/ to see if they qualify to take part in the restitution program brought about by the settlement.





by MacNN Staff

POST TOOLS:

TAGS :

toggle

Comments

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.

toggle

Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook

toggle

Most Popular

Advertisement

Recent Reviews

Blue Yeti Studio

Despite being very familiar with Blue Microphones' lower-end products -- we've long recommended the company's Snowball line of mics ...

ZTE Spro 2 Smart Projector

Home theaters are becoming more and more accessible these days, but maybe you've been a bit wary about buying a home projector. And h ...

MSI Geforce GTX 970 100ME

When Nvidia announced a new line of video cards in September 2014, many people thought things would continue to be business as usual i ...

toggle

Most Commented