Ebay, PayPal Are Making Robocalls a Big Part of Their Strategy
PayPal was a part of Ebay until a few months ago. Now, it’s a separately functioning entity. The two companies still work together, though. They both amended their User Agreements in exactly the same way this week. They say they want to call you to “collect a debt,” “poll your opinions through surveys or questionnaires” or “contact you with offers and promotions.” If you’re a Paypal or EBay user, you could start receiving calls on July 1st.
Consumer protection advocates haven’t taken the news well. The biggest question is “how will we opt out?” Some have said the only way to do it would be to end your relationship with the companies altogether. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman contacted the companies to ask that question and others. Ebay responded by saying that they have noticed some concern and look forward to answering questions.
“We value our relationship with you and have no intention of harassing you. Our contacts with you are intended to benefit our relationship,” said Louise Pentland, PayPal’s general counsel. She said the company may need to contact you is when your information is used in a fraudulent transaction, but many don’t believe that the aim of the agreement is protection-oriented. It authorizes the harvesting of phone numbers when users call the company, according to CNBC. So if you contact customer service, don’t be surprised if you get a marketing call soon afterwards.
It appears that this move is intended to earn the company a little extra cash. Perhaps EBay and PayPal are anticipating heightened competition in the near future, and have plans for the extra funds. Google Wallet, Authorize.net and even Bitcoin have been advancing steadily for some time. They will provide significant competition long into the future, as well.