I hope this is the right place to inquire about this. I have some
information about a possible problem with the company handling
registration for code4lib. I recently noticed a suspicious charge on my
credit card for the amount of $64.95. The charge showed up as
ACT*ACTIVE-NETWORK. After some investigation I found out this was from a
company called ACTIVE Network, LLC. Apparently this company handles
registration for events.
To my dismay I found out that I had been charged for this annually since
2013. I'm very embarrassed that 1. I didn't notice this during the
registration process and 2. I didn't catch the charges earlier. Anyhow,
after a quick email search I found something surprising; I had received
emails from this company at my /work/ email address. I never noticed the
emails because they looked like junkmail, however, upon reviewing them I
discovered that at some point I had supposedly registered for a free
trial that ended after a month, at which point I was automatically
enrolled into an annual subscription. Needless to say, I//did /not/ ever
sign up for any trial or subscription, at least not to my knowledge.
Since I have only used my personal credit card for work purposes 3
times, it was easy to tie this to code4lib 2013. I looked at my receipt
for code4lib 2013 and saw that something called RegOnline (owned by
Lanyon Solutions Inc) was used to process my event registration. Though
I'm not sure this is the same company, RegOnline, Lanyon Solutions Inc,
and ACTIVE Network, LLC all share the same physical address. I suspect
these three companies are one and the same and will refer to them as
ACTIVE Network, LLC for the rest of this email.
I did a little investigating and found out that ACTIVE Network, LLC.
uses unscrupulous business practices to trick people into singing up for
their annual subscription. The crux of this is an "automatic opt-in"
they employ while processing enrollments for third parties. Though I'm
very embarrassed I didn't catch this, in my own defense I wasn't
expecting it while registering for an academic conference. I'm not
blaming anyone nor am I angry with anyone on this list. I only send this
email to inquire and inform:
1. To see if anyone else has had a similar experience.
2. To warn other people from code4lib to check their bank statements.
3. To plead with the community to stop using ACTIVE Network, LLC and
anything affiliated with them for registration.
Let me be frank for a moment. ACTIVE Network, LLC engages in highly
unethical business practices. I did not intend to enroll in any annual
subscriptions when I registered for code4lib and I never would have
agreed to anything of the sort had I noticed what was happening.
Additionally, the subscription isn't at all relevant to code4lib. I'm
not even sure what value is being provided by the subscription. I think
it has something to do with coupons for outdoor exercise equipment but
I'm not even sure. Also, these guys are bad. They lost class action
lawsuits in Iowa and Vermont. In fact, this whole thing is just bad all
around. Since noticing the fraudulent charges this morning, I've already
disputed them with my bank and filed a formal complaint against ACTIVE
Network, LLC with the better business bureau. Apparently I'm not the
I apologize if I've made an error in my investigation or if I've done
something inappropriate by emailing this list. I can't imagine that
anyone would have intended anything like this but I thought you should
all be aware.
The University of Chicago Library