To Paypal or NOT to Paypal…

Quite unbelievably, despite reporting a problem to Paypal on 26 August, we have STILL not received confirmation that this problem has been resolved. Here’s the background…

    On 26 August we identified a serious problem with Paypal.

    StatCounter members who had upgraded in the previous few days had NOT been appropriately upgraded as the Paypal system stopped sending out subscription payment notifications. In fact new subscriptions were no longer created at all and payments received were not linked to StatCounter accounts.

    In short, we were receiving hundreds of Paypal payments which we couldn’t link to any StatCounter account. As you can imagine, this caused serious difficulties for us.

    We reported the problem to Paypal with as much supporting evidence as possible to assist them in quickly identifying the problem… but, as we have come to expect, the first response from Paypal completely ignored the information we supplied and denied the problem.

    It’s now 5 WEEKS since we reported this issue to Paypal and we have STILL not received confirmation that this problem has been resolved. We feel we have been more than patient at this stage and remain astounded that any company can treat its customers with such disregard.

While we understand that ALL services can have problems from time to time we find Paypal’s habit of ignoring its customers to be abhorrent. We are particularly upset that Paypal’s poor behaviour can and does impact on you, our members, and also unfairly reflects on us.


Our Position
As a result of this Paypal problem, we had to manually examine hundreds of payments, attempt to link these to StatCounter accounts and where this wasn’t possible we had to contact the payees individually to request their StatCounter usernames. As you can imagine, this had a high cost for us in terms of time and resources. Further, although these problems were caused by Paypal, StatCounter has absorbed all the costs of this problem. We also felt it was only right for us to offer all affected members a free upgrade for one month to make amends for the problems. Paypal, of course, offered us (their customer) absolutely nothing by way of assistance for the trouble they caused us.

Unfortunately, we have been here before… At that time, we decided NOT to remove Paypal as a payment option for new subscribers. This was because we highly value each of our members and, despite OUR poor opinion of Paypal, we have to cater to what YOU, our members want. However, we are now again considering our position in relation to Paypal…

Your Feedback Please
Due to the problems outlined above, Paypal has been suspended as a payment option (for NEW subscriptions) on StatCounter since 26 August and remains so. We can’t possibly reactivate it until such time as Paypal confirms that the problems introduced in August have been fixed… but we have no idea when that will be. In the meantime, we’d like to ask you, our members, for your thoughts on this.

Both problems we have had with PayPal have been with their subscription payments. During this problem and the last one, regular Paypal manual payments appeared to be functioning normally. On this basis, we are wondering if we should STOP accepting PayPal subscriptions and accept only manual payments instead? Manual payments *would* require our upgraded customers to log in to Paypal every time a payment falls due… so perhaps we will have to restrict Paypal upgrades to quarterly or yearly – logging in every month to pay could be a bit too time consuming! We’re not sure about this idea, so do let us know your thoughts!

We’d also love to know what alternative payment options we can introduce to cater for your payment preferences.

Here are our initial thoughts…

  • We need to accept Discover cards – if you can recommend an acquirer for a European company, please let us know
  • We need to accept AMEX for USD payments – currently we can only accept AMEX directly for EUR payments
  • We need to accept echecks – please let us know if you can recommend any echeck processors

Note that we already accept VISA, Mastercard, AMEX (for EUR payments), wire/bank transfer, EUR/USD checks/cheques.

Please post below with any other card or payment method you think we should accept and feel free to share any comments or suggestions you may have. Thanks folks.

UPDATE: Please note that existing, active Paypal subscriptions are not affected by the suspension of Paypal on StatCounter – this affects NEW subscriptions only.

537 comments on “To Paypal or NOT to Paypal…

  1. We too use Paypal but heartily dislike having to do so. We too have noticed an increase in transanctions not being notified to us by email. However we check our Paypal account several times a day to ensure we don’t miss any.

    Paypal’s customer support is truly dreadful, and I am in constant fear that they will , for no good reason, interfere with our payments. The problem is finding an alternative payment method and shopping cart that will integrate into an existing website, and that will not double or even treble our processing costs. If anyone knows of one, we would very much like to hear about it!

  2. I don’t use PayPal at all nowadays, after they randomly downgraded my account, saying they would hold any transfers made to me for 21 days! There’s never been any kind of complaint against me, I have a 100% eBay rating, and trying to converse with them is like talking to mindless zombies, who just send out standard and profoundly unhelpful emails.

    As others here have said, PayPal is good in theory (i.e. if all goes well), but their customer service makes them shockingly bad in practice. If TCB dumps PayPal, I for one will cheer. It might even start a bit of a ‘movement’, and help seal the fate that PayPal so richly deserves….

  3. Paypal is lobbying hard against legislation that would shut down pirate sites and funding that side of the debate. Why would they work so hard to perpetuate piracy and theft? Because they make money at it.

    Just another way that Paypal sucks canal water.

  4. PayPal is a great service… when it works!!

    But, like you have found out, when there is a problem, they are the absolute worst!! I have had several “situations” arise with them in the last 15 years that I have used them (off and on). I have had accounts frozen on two occasions and the funds held by them for a minimum of 180 days (they were finally released) and they were totally non-responsive to logic and reason… seems to be a regular modus operandi with them…

    IF you get to contact a “support” person, all they do is continue to refer to “company policy” responses and totally fail to address any real issues… meantime, they hold (and earn interest) your money!

    The one that really blew my mind was totally ILLEGAL on their part – they back charged my account and put it into a negative balance and, when I refused to “re-imburse” them, had the audacity to turn me into a collection bureau. Fortunately I fully documented everything and kept all correspondence on file. This occurred back in 2003 and just last month, after not hearing anything for the past 6 years, I got a call again from a collection agency. I advised them that if they persist, I will file charges with the attorney general. I have not heard anything back.

    Bottom line… if there is another way, stop using PayPal, however, because of international dealings it probably is not practical. When PayPal works, it is really great for processing all of the currency exchanges and credit cards all over the world. I still have a PayPal account (for collecting money) but I use it very sparingly.

  5. Also… I suggest anyone experiencing problems or those who have already been screwed file a complaint with the California State Attorney General’s Office. You can submit the entire form online. Just fill in the blanks! It only takes a few minutes and you don’t even have to pay for a stamp.

    Submit your complaint here:
    http://ag.ca.gov/contact/complaint_form.php?cmplt=CL

  6. Paypal is great until something inevitably goes wrong and you witness just how twisted their policies really are. It took 10 years but they finally screwed me. It’s a terrible feeling to realize that you’ve been flying blind the whole time. They are the absolute worst.

    Paypal enables fraud by allowing buyers to file frivolous chargebacks against sellers and keep your items after they get a refund. All Paypal cares about and only cares about is keeping the credit card companies happy.

    Any Paypal fanboys out there that don’t believe me… Do a google search for “Paypal screws sellers” or “paypal sucks”.

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