magicJack EULA up to no good?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Boing Boing first pointed out some concerns with the magicJack end-user license agreement (EULA) which they say requires customers to agree to ads, even with its paid service. This is not uncommon for free phone services, but pretty strange for s service where the customer is paying for the service (and buying the hardware).

In short, it not only has one agree to ads with its paid-for system, but claims that the ads are necessary for it to work. It will also snoop on your calls to target ads more accurately, and has you sign away your legal right to take it to court if it defrauds or otherwise harms you. Delightful.

Neither the EULA itself, nor any other privacy or legal information, can be easily found at its homepage. It's not even provided at the point of sale, where one enters credit card info, email and street addresses as such, so as to gain access to the service and have your MagicJack dongle delivered. I found the EULA's URL through Google.


They also noted something I find really sleazy, a "free trial" counter on the majicJack homepage that is a fake, a javascript applet that increments itself automatically:

// the interval (ms) between new visitors
var interval = Math.round(86400000/perday);


Others have pointed out other potential problems with the "too good to be true" cost of magicJack, such as the savings might be overshadowed by the increase in your electric bill as a result of leaving a heat and power sucking Windows PC on 24 hours a day in order to have phone service.

4 comments:

anakaoka said...

magicJack misses about 20% of incoming calls but makes 90% of outgoing calls okay - not bad

Yienwae said...

What ads are these people talking about? The only ads I see are on the MagicJack Console Interface.

As of now, I have received no popups since I had my MagicJack. Will this occur in the future, I cannot predict, but if these ads only stay in the console, it is no big deal for me.

Anonymous said...

Who ever wrote this, u miss one major point. You dont have to buy it online, you can buy at the store and not give any information. When renewing, just buy a debit card (a visa one) and use it. it may cost 3 dollars but it saves your privacy, and look how much u save in the end. I dont have a majicjack, so not quite sure how u get advertisements over the phone, but.........

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