– Too Hard to Say Goodbye

kinnon —  December 12, 2008 — 3 Comments

One might think that, the online ecard version of the well known greeting card company, American Greetings, has a favorite Eagles song line, “You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.” They do their very best to make that line comes true when you want to cancel your ecard subscription.

You see, unlike most online subscriptions that let you cancel online (golly, since they let you signup online, now didn’t they),, the online version of American Greetings, forces you to call a phone number. But, when they use email (golly, another online tool, n’est-ce pas) to let you know they will be charging your credit card once again (because you were foolish enough to give it to them in the first place), but this time for $2.00 more than last year which you’d only know if you checked last year’s bill – since they don’t mention an increase anywhere, they also are kind enough in that email to tell you,

If you do not wish to continue your membership, instructions on how to cancel can be found in our Help pages. Go to, sign in , and click on ‘All About my Paid Membership’ [BTW: Last year’s email, that told you about the charge that was $2 less than this year does have the phone number in it, just in case you were wondering. Maybe it cost a lot of money to remove the phone number from the email]

Once you search through the section, find the All About My Paid Membership (strategically placed far down the left column) get asked with every page load to let the site use Google Gears, you finally discover a number, 1-800-711-4474, that you can to call to cancel. Because, even though American Greetings’ subsidiary, is space-age technofied enough to allow you to sign up for a “membership” online, they just don’t trust those newfangled interwebs to let you cancel online. It’s all for your personal safety, of course.

And when you call that number, you are greeted with the latest in voicemail technology – a system that claims to respond to voice commands. I guess my Canadian accent was too hard for the system to understand – as it kept repeating the same message over and over again. “Just say….”

My advice to you, if you’re thinking of getting someone a card, go out and buy them one, address it, put a stamp on it and put it in the mail. That’s only a little more low-tech than is when it comes to cancelling your “membership.” (And remember, there are lots of other greeting card companies so you won’t need to necessarily buy one from parent, American Greetings.)

Or just send someone a nice email – maybe with a picture from your digital camera attached – if you really want to be as technologically advanced as

I think I’ll go listen to the Eagles Hotel California – the Joe Walsh/Don Felder guitar duel solo is crushing.

Oh. And, subsidiary of American Greetings, in case you were wondering, I really wasn’t happy with the way you made it difficult for me to cancel my two year old subscription – the one I used maybe twice and the one that you increased by $2.00 year over year – without easily allowing me to opt out. It is truly a slimy way to operate – though I’m sure you’ve crossed all your legal t’s and dotted your legal i’s – I wouldn’t want to accuse you of not using the very best legal advice money can buy to ensure you operate within the letter of the law. Have a nice day.



A television editor, writer & director since 1978. A Christian since 1982. More than a little frustrated with the Church in the West since late in the last millennium.

3 responses to – Too Hard to Say Goodbye

  1. You can check out the artistic, animated ecards from The cancellation will be pretty easy and straight-forward.

  2. I saw ecards by Pamela Gladding. These cards are beautiful drawn and then brought to life with motion and music. Check it out at The cancellation will be easy.

  3. January 4, 2009 at 10:39 pm

    Cancellation is impossible!
    Please tell me how to accomplish such a simple means of communication
    Me thinks american Greeting card Co. is guilty of fradulant practices with no intention of allowing an automatic renewel be cancelled.


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