You've probably heard that Vonage lost a $58Mil lawsuit to Verizon over some VOIP patents -- if you haven't, you can read the article here. I would think that when you are losing so much over a process that you can't entirely control (I would guess that Vonage wasn't specifically operating under the assumption that they were violating patents) that you would focus your efforts on things you can control like customer service. Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be the case.
I called to cancel my Vonage service today that I've had for 3+ years because it's just not being used and the extra $20 per month in savings can pay for lots more minutes on cell phone plans for my wife and I. Below is the text of an e-mail that I sent to Vonage detailing my experience -- I have deleted out names and account numbers where appropriate.
Although you may not be the correct contact for this
e-mail, yours was one of the few e-mail addresses at Vonage that I
could find on the web -- please feel free to forward this to the
Today I called to cancel my Vonage account simply due to the
fact that I was not using the service; up to this point I had been a
customer for 3+ years and not had any sort of problem with the
service. After getting through to a customer service representative, I
explained that I wished to cancel the service, gave all of the account
information, and even provided some reasons why I would not be
continuing the service. When the representative asked me specific
questions about my cellular service plans, I refused to give him the
information and asked that he simply cancel the account. Instead of
completing the account cancellation, he offered me a $9.99 plan for 100
minutes, which I refused, and then asked me if I had children in the
house. At this point I very politely thanked the representative for
trying his best to keep me as a customer and explained that I felt I
had 2 options: (1) cancel the account today with him, or (2) call my
credit card company and explain to them that I had attempted to cancel
the account, but Vonage refused to do so and I needed to dispute the
charges. Following my explanation of my options, the representative
tried to explain the benefits of a home phone and again asked if their
were children in my house. I responded that I had already declined to
answer his question, that I had already made several requests for
cancellation, and that I now wanted to speak to his supervisor. The
representative responded that he was a supervisor as he was in "account
management", asked if there was anyone I would recommend Vonage to (to
which I responded that I would have prior to my interaction with him),
and then began speaking sarcastically about me to someone else in the
call center, making comments about my wanting to speak to someone
above. than him -- these comments were followed by his disconnecting
called back and spoke to a different representative and she was able to
not only help me cancel the account, but provided me with the last name
of the first representative: [deleted]. She did suggest that if I wished
to file a complaint that I contact the corporate office and provided me
with the corporate office number, but I felt that filing the complaint
via e-mail was a more effective method.
My former telephone number was [deleted] and the former account number was [deleted].
Please let me know if you need any further information from me.
Amazingly bad customer service from the first representative, although I will admit that the second representative not only quickly closed my account, but did provide me with the information I needed to make a complaint. Note that I did have to do a Google search to find an e-mail address at Vonage because they don't provide an easy way to get in touch with them via e-mail; perhaps they should look at either having a form for "other" complaints on their website or simply providing a generic customer service e-mail address that is checked periodically. By the way: I'm not making this complaint in the hope of receiving anything from Vonage, it's just that if I were in a management position over there, I would certainly want to know about stuff like this.
I'll let you know when and if anyone ever gets back to me.