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Change in refund policy: the "administrative fee"

New change on the refund policy.


The previous policy was a good system, but it had a weakness:

It made the system more complex, instead of simpler, and it required more of my time, instead of less.

Any student who wanted to explore the course should have counted/calculated what was 1/3, and that was a small added complexity.

And for any refund request, if I wanted to go to the bottom of it, I'd have to switch to the requestor's user, and control his usage to make sure he wasn't trying to game the system.
That's all added work and time.

And albeit refunds are uncommon, I still like to have an efficient system.


  • Small protection against abuse: the worst types value-takers want all, for nothing. So the admin fee might discourage the very worst of them. And for the grey ones, they'd still have to chip in something
  • More motivated students: those who proceed with the purchase will be more motivated to make it work for them
  • More serious buyers: a good chunk of the refunds come from people who open the course and quickly change their mind in a matter of hours. I suspect those people didn't read the description, and were likely expecting a series of videos, or bite-sized entertaining lessons. Those people aren't serious about improving themselves and their lives, and they waste my time. I think this change will tackle quite a few of those


  • Fewer people might buy

Some people might lose some trust, or focus on the potential loss of $9.9 in the very worst case scenario, rather than focusing on the potential upsides if the course adds value to their lives -which is the more likely scenario-.

But I'm cool with that.

  • Some people might get pissed off

A tiny minority of people will not read the course description, and might not even read the refund policy. So when they will realize about it, they might get angry, and escalate to PayPal, credit card, or whatever they used.

I'm also cool with that.

The good thing about honoring your obligations is that you develop a very solid track record, so when you've got an issue, you have little to worry about.

Matthew Whitewood has reacted to this post.
Matthew Whitewood
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?