At the bottom of page three is a coupon with four check boxes on it. Check each one and I can opt out of a multitude of different marketing opportunities. Naturally, I’d prefer to simply call in my opt-out preferences to the 800 number printed on the the slip. Otherwise I’ll have to dig up an envelope (no reply envelope was included), write the multi-line address on it, stamp it, mail it, and hope for the best. Calling the 800 number is relatively free and painless, while dealing with postal mail is by definition a pain in the rear. And for some reason, I just don’t trust this method to actually work.
I call (800-297-8378 if you want to try it for yourself). I get a recording welcoming me American Express and notifying me that the call could be recorded… then abruptly says: “The computer system needed to answer your questions is not available.” And it hangs up.
Chris says the phone number has been non-working for 5 days now and sure enough when The Consumerist called it a sing-songy computer voice cheerfully proclaimed the computer unavailable and unceremoniously hung up.
Sadly, one cannot opt-out of telephone and postal marketing through AmEx’s website, so it seems that Christopher will have to locate that stamp. What’s the deal, AmEx? 5 days is much too long to go without a way for your customers to opt out via telephone. As Christopher says, “If this is all a scam (and I hope it isn’t), shame on AmEx. If, instead, it’s the longest, most difficult computer error in the history of mankind, well, it’s time to put out a press release.” Too much to ask? —MEGHANN MARCO
American Express’ Shady Privacy Practice [Yahoo! Tech]