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Offering refunds or stipends for failure to provide basic services promised

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  • Sarmat
    replied
    Originally posted by dna View Post
    I was under the impression that one pays here for DNA testing and the service afterwards is included for free.

    W.
    Quite aside from the OP's very valid points in the above post, what say you about FTDNA's apparent inability to deliver basic testing results within their agreed-upon timeframes or even to answer basic questions about status (without the customer having to take the extraordinary measure of going straight to the president of the company)?

    As of next week, I will have been waiting a full 6 months for results that were supposed to be delivered in 8-10 weeks. I've not even received the slightest hint of an apology, let alone the offer of even a partial refund or a discount on future testing, which I think would be fully warranted in cases like this.

    Leave a comment:


  • Aperipatetic1
    replied
    Originally posted by dna View Post
    I was under the impression that one pays here for DNA testing and the service afterwards is included for free.

    W.
    That might be a valid point IF we were talking about Y or Mt accounts, however I am ONLY a autosomal customer, and the testing alone has no value in and of itself to me. Its the ability to maintain site functionality and to enable matching that has value. As a complete aside, I did complete Y testing with DNA Heritage, a former competitor of FTDNA, which to my understanding was bought out by FTDNA.

    Back many years ago, I seem to recall that my 43 marker Y test with DNA Heritage cost me much less than the CURRENT price of a basic STR panel offered TODAY by FTDNA. For a period of time, FTDNA once allowed users who were aware of the buyout to ask to transfer their results from the (now captive) DNAH system into the FTDNA system, however this was not done unless user initiated, and the links to request it are now all dead the last time I checked. So.. in the span of a decade or so, instead of the sequencing going down in price as the technology proliferates widely - as is common in tech fields - the cost has increased for a smaller STR panel, in my comparison.

    The shortsided business model of refusing to give out terminal Y/MT Hg's along with the F.F. results, (instead of matching their competitors and THEN later encourage users to test to get their STR's/mutations which their biggest competitor cannot offer) is probably more than any other single factor the reason that F.F. cannot compete in its user base with the other big 2 companies.

    I have seen the 23andMe accounts that offer a "common names" feature, among many other features, and the recently added feature of FTDNA posting the three most common names within your match database seems to me like a attempt to mimic superficially this site feature from 23andMe. The problem is.. the 23andMe feature does not simply pick out the 3 most commonly occurring names, it weighs them based on commonality so it actually has some usefulness. Telling everyone on the site that "Smith" is one of the most common names in your match list is hardly a revelation to anyone, because it does not appear that the FTDNA adoption has the ability to assess and rank names based on a commonality.. without which its totally pointless. Since this began showing up, my M.O. database has been completely depopulated.

    I expect a match ability within M.O., and paid for it. I have given the company polite and repeat requests to fix what is a BASIC advertised facet of their service. If they cannot keep that populated, what else is wrong with my account, match data, or the data that other users see?

    I am honestly happy to move on at this point, as I simply dont see any ability for the FTDNA product to compete with the other main offerings at this point. It looks to my outsider view as though it is being run like a family business, that hires the friends/associates of the owners, and this rarely ever works well in any industry that I have ever seen.

    Business should be business, and friends should be friends. There does not appear to me to be a real ability or a demand from management to get things sorted out or to advance the capabilities of the company. I dont pretend to know the inner issues with the company or what is causing these issues, however my best guess is that its time for a real accounting of who is capable and efficient and innovative.

    If you cannot deliver to me a simple populated My Origins database, give me a refund and we can part ways. I frankly prefer that, at this point. Return the purchase price to my card, and delete everything.

    Leave a comment:


  • dna
    replied
    I was under the impression that one pays here for DNA testing and the service afterwards is included for free.

    W.

    Leave a comment:


  • Offering refunds or stipends for failure to provide basic services promised

    I think I have been very patient as pertains to a recent issue I have detailed repeatedly concerning the de-population of my My Origins database. I had severe trouble getting in contact with anyone from FTDNA, and have since been told they are looking at it, and that its a potentially widespread problem.

    I really dont trust the service here, or technical competency anymore. I also dont feel that the ability to deliver the basic service I paid for exists with the personnel that are manning the enterprise.

    I think the fair thing to do is to offer customers, in cases where the user has made a fair effort to give the company and its staff a genuine opportunity to fix the (legitimate) problem in a timely fashion, a refund of their purchase price, or a fair stipend of the cost (say 50%) toward a purchase of the same services from Ancestry.com.

    I have asked repeatedly to get the issue resolved, and its the duty and, really.. obligation, of the company to have personnel who are able to diagnose and fix their own technical problems- failing some genuine 'act of god' of partial/total collapse of the grid, that is beyond the ability of the company to resolve. I would like to accept a buyout and move to the services of Ancestry.com at this point. I feel its fair to ask and expect a refund or stipend toward that end, simply because I am not getting the service that I paid for.

    It is fine with me if FTDNA deletes my entire account in exchange for a refund. I am now simply tired of attempts to make contact with their personnel and the apparent inability to tell me substantively what the problem is or why they cannot apparently correct their own system. I think some real, wholesale changes need to be made in the business model and especially staffing if FTDNA wants its F.F. product to ever become competitive with 23andMe or Ancestry, and this is not a statement I make vitriolically, but simply as a byproduct of observation.

    You cannot have employees deciding to spontaneously take away the ability to add even a brief signature to their own account (that they paid for the service of), you cannot maintain a company roster of personnel who accept failings or poor service, you cannot take away my entire My Origins database, and in return add a stupid non-interactive display at the top of my account tellling me the most common 3 names of matches are Smith, Johnson, and Davis.. which it UTTERLY WORTHLESS.

    This is simply poor service, and I want out. Can someone please make me an offer as to what you will stipend me toward a Ancestry autsomal account, or if you will agree to a full refund, go and ahead and send it to me, and I authorise you to immediately delete my records, dna, and account in their entirety?

    I am sorry, I am not really intending to vent, I am simply disgusted at this point and would like a buy out, refund, or stipend offer.
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