Angry at American Express
Just tried to join the forum at American Express and it is not OPEN. I must include my American Express card number. Is this really "open"? I don't mind joining and registering but giving out financial information such as a credit card number is not OPEN.
Small business needs access to and the lack of an American Express card should not preclude acceptance to an "open forum".
Adding a financial piece to a forum of any sort, I believe is against the very nature of the world wide web.
There are rules for contests that state no purchase is necessary. Where are the rules for the internet?
What are your thoughts?
I think their Open brand name is for a particular kind of business account. That name was probably chosen without regards to the web site. You may object to the marketing savvy of the word, but it's just a name for a particular product they offer, which could just as easily be called "Charles" or "Blue Card."
A lot of people think the internet is free. It is not. Someone is paying for it. They are paying for the servers, the maintenance, the software, the moderation, the spam and malware blockage, software engineers, and actual staff and 24/7 monitoring.
When it comes to freedom of speech, we are all free to create our own website and say whatever we want -- that is guaranteed by the first amendment -- but we can't expect someone else to pay to host our content for us and allow us to post whatever we want on their site. And a company may choose to create a forum or website as a special perk for their customers, who after all are giving them money that helps pay for the site.
Websites are like clubs or organizations. People can open one up and do whatever they legally want. They can use whatever criteria they want for membership or access. The visitor equally has the right to just say "No"; as you have done. Also, you can open your own website and do the exact same thing; and your visitors will also have the right to just say "no".
In fact, as an example, HP is perfectly within their legal rights to amend their TOS to state that: "To remain a member of HP, you must fly to San Francisco within the next 60 days and do 10 allah's in front of the HP building".
Yep, looks like their forum is "open" to cardholders only. I'm wondering why you're so intent on posting there if you're not even one of their customers.
If it was me, I might want to make a few choice comments about their fees.
I thought the Internet was about open doors not buying your entrance. I guess American Express is the country club forum where dollars or in this case your credit card matters.
I just have a problem with lack of access.
We have gone far to here in the United States to include the disabled in everything yet the businessman cannot enter a forum without a credit card.
To my mind, any limitation of knowledge stifles all of us.
Membership only forums could be fine for recreation but this is a business site with valuable educational knowledge that is being hidden for the many.
Wouldn't the world be better off with open access for information? Isn't American Express' logo rather ironic in visually saying "open" and yet the membership is clearly "elite"?
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