From Fri May 23 07:56:16 1997
Date: Thu, 22 May 1997 14:56:59 -0700
From: Michael Sigler <>
Subject: My Problem with America Online


My name is Michael Sigler, I am 38 years old late deafen adult who needs some help in solving a problem.

It all started in mid 1993 when I tried the 10 hours free offer from America Online. I gave them my checking account number so that they could allow me to try there trial offer. After 6 to 7 hours of use and lots of busy signals. I decided not to use America Online and call them up to cancel. Also during this time period America Online sent me forms to sign so that they could automatically debt my checking account for billing purposes. I did not sign the forms because I had cancel.

I immediately joined a local internet provider that did not have busy signals and also was cheaper providing unlimited services on the internet.

Due to communication problems since at that time I had recently become deaf I misunderstood what a customer representive at the bank had told me, (I had just started learning to lip read at that time was told I really did not need to know sign language) , she said because of no activity on my checking account no bank statements where mailed, I thought she said low activity at the time. So for 4 years I had never recieved a bank statement and I thought that was normal because I wrote only a few checks per month.

Then May of this year I sign up for a new service that my bank provided allowing you access to your account via the internet. I discovered that I had a electronic debt for 24.95. I went to the bank and asked what that electronic debt was , I was informed that it was a charge from America Online and it had been going on since 1993.

I also discovered the real reason I was not recieving statements was because the bank had misspelled my street address and the statements where returning back to them all the time. I immediately put a stop to the electronic debt from America Online and try to recover my money. Everyone keeps telling me that I can only get back 2 months of this and that is all because they have no record of cancelation.

I dont believe in waiting for a lawyer to solve my problems I have a more direct approach that I want to use. Since America Online makes there money using the internet. I want them to also lose there money using the internet.

As of right now I am out of my money and no way of getting it back.

I like to ask for you help in the following way if you believe I am right that I should get my money back since I never use there service at all after the free hours of usage and they admit that is true but will not refund my money.

1. If you are an America Online user go to some other provider and tell them the reason you are doing this is that Michael Sigler ask you to. Also forward this email to one of your friends.

2. If your are not an America Online user please forward this email to one of your friends so they know what America Online does.

3. Write to your elected official and ask that there be a law that clearly states that no monthly electronic deductions can be made on your banking account without your written premission. I have discovered that if anyone knows your checking account number they can use a computer to get the money transferred without you knowing it until its to late for you to do anything about it.

What I want to do is send a message to Corporations is that people help you make profits and if you do harm to people then people can also take those profits elsewhere.

Please consider this, I never completed my 10 hours yet so why was I billed? I never signed the papers mailed to me authorizing the electronic debit of my account. Why would I have another internet provider if I did not cancel with AOL. Especially since I am on disability and dont have much money to spend in the first place. They claim that they have no record of me canceling. Oh when you complain and ask for your money back, they tell you the law only allows them to return 2 months back. Nice law where you can steal and when you get caught they only have to return 2 months worth.

Please remember this can happen to you also. I am sending this out to everyone I know or have an email address on.

I would like your comments on this letter telling me what you think.

Respectfully yours,

Michael Sigler
415 Boren Ave #3
Seattle WA 98104

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