2010-01-22

I want my paper bills!

Today I got a letter from O2. The later says "This will be the last bill you'll get in the post.". My bills are now online only. Here's the benefits;
  • Less trees have to die.
Here are the drawbacks;
  • I will no longer have a papertrail of my history with O2. Should there be some problem and some legal implications, all I have to present to the courts is my login and password. Or potentially (forged?) home-made-print-outs. I doubt the court would accept those as evidence.
  • I am the one who'll have to remember yet another URL, yet another Username, yet another Password.
  • If I want to have a paper trail, I will have to pay for the Printer, Ink, Paper (there goes the "less trees have to die" benefit), but also all my time. And this might still not be admissable in court.
  • What happens when I want to go to some shop and buy something that requires the foolproof UK way of asking for "a recent bill". If all companies that I'm a customer of will turn to "paperless bills", I will have no way of securing another contract. I doubt they'll accept some dodgy print out..?! (Or will O2 guarantee it?!)
  • But the big one: What happens if I should move from O2 (quite friggin likely!)?; Do I still have access to my bills on their website. Is my login still valid?
There's a reason why paper has been admissable in court for centuries. There's a reason why we sign paper contracts - not just some click on "OK" after ticking an "I agree to the terms" on some random website. Paper is physical.
If you really want to save trees, figure out a way to get rid of envelopes and print on smaller and thinner paper. I bet there's a 66% to 75% saving there.
No, the real reason why O2 are doing this, and a lot of other companies do it too, is so that they can save money. They. Not me. So, rightfully, I'm entitled to a discount for "paperless billing".
Here you have it O2;
Give me my bill back, or drop, saaaaay... £3 off my monthly bill!

Update!
I just logged in to view my online bill. If I want to print it it doesn't even say what phone number, let alone my address, name and account number. How am I supposed to present that to any 3rd party. It could be anybody's bill. FAIL!

Update II!
I forgot to mention that I've been trying to change my direct debit details forever. I can't do it in a shop, and even if there's an "update billing shizniz" button on the O2 site, I'm unable to change my details. The only way I can do it is to ring them. Which I refuse to do as I bought the device from the shop. FAIL II!

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