California may soon pass legislation requiring companies that offer Internet subscriptions or online cable to give customers the ability to cancel those services with the single click of a mouse.
The point of the bill would be to make it easier for consumers to cancel services. By going online, customers can avoid the hassle of speaking with service representatives—a process that is often seen as obtrusive and unfair to customers.
If the bill passes, it would only apply to residents in California.
“It just makes sense, that if you are able to sign up for a service online, you should also be able to cancel it the same way,” explained California Assemblyman Mike Gatto, who proposed the legislation.
Understandably, many cable operators are concerned that this legislation would be harmful, giving them fewer opportunities to prevent customers from cutting their cords. Operators typically use the cancellation call to offer incentives to deter the customer from leaving. So if the bill passes, there is reason to believe that it could impact cable operators’ bottom lines.
On the flip side, customers will still have the option to call to cancel their service. Online cancellation is just another option to make the process easier.
It will be interesting to see how the California decision plays out, and, if it passes, whether it will be successful. If so, it’s worth speculating that this trend could spread to other states.
It’s yet another sign that purchasing power is shifting into the hands of customers.