Numerous consumers complain again and again to the consumer advice centers. And I also get corresponding requests from time to time. When searching for streaming providers, many through internet research they easily get to questionable offers that supposedly offer streaming with a free 5-day trial period. This in turn is usually automatically extended to an annual subscription. Since the sites rarely comply with the so-called button solution or have clear terms and conditions, and sometimes even work with special landing pages that do not refer to a subscription when you refer to Google, for example, but do when you enter the URL directly, this often ends with reminders for hundreds of euros. The addresses of these websites are numerous and constantly changing, but they are very similar in appearance.

Even the consumer advice center in Hesse recently warned against such websites. Sometimes the registration does not work completely. In some cases, consumers cannot watch videos at all after registration. Then, of course, as a consumer, you think you don’t have to worry about it anymore. Nevertheless, reminder letters suddenly land in the mailbox.

There are numerous nonsensical regulations in the GTC. These often state, for example, that minors automatically act with the consent of their parents and that they must pay the subscription. If you receive letters from such providers, you should contact the consumer advice center or a lawyer.

Part of the strategy, by the way, is intimidation. The reminders are aggressive and give the impression that resistance would be futile anyway. For this purpose, the providers even put YouTube videos online. In them, alleged lawyers tell that the claim for money from a certain side would be legal in any case. These videos sometimes show up in search results when you type the name of the streaming portal on Google. Comments are usually not possible under the videos. How untrustworthy this is can already be seen from the fact that the lawyer does not give any information about his office and often even speaks only broken German. Please do not be put off by this and pay money senselessly. Retrieval is almost impossible!

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