Have you ever registered for a free trial only to charge a monthly fee when you forget to cancel on time? For a moment it seemed that Mastercard was ready to provide the ultimate solution – a new policy that would force traders to you want it every month before you pay a dime.

Physical products, not digital services

Unfortunately, Mastercard has now clarified that this was a much more limited solution than the one originally proposed by the company. The new policy only applies when you subscribe to physical products that are delivered to your door, like vitamins and snacks, non-digital services like Netflix or PlayStation Plus.

(Nothing against PlayStation Plus is the one I personally forget to cancel each year, Netflix just announced a price increase, but I'm an addict who will probably continue to pay.)

Mastercard has already updated its blog post to say that it speaks of physical products and not digital products. She added that she will add a footnote to make the result more transparent.

The original blog post, which did not specify that the strategy only applied to physical products.

Why would Mastercard admit the error, instead of just rolling over and agreeing to protect card owners from both types of recurring subscriptions? This is not entirely clear, but Mastercard spokesperson Chaiti Sen said The edge The company wanted to start with physical products, because that's where its customers had the most problems.

"There is a lot of confusion in health care products, skin care products, vitamins … these physical products are the ones that cause the most complaints," she says.

These are legitimate businesses that Mastercard wants to suppress, she adds, when I ask her if any of these complaints could be due to snake oil scams.

So, if you're having trouble with your Stitch Fix, Graze or anything else, for example, I canceled my subscription to a Graze snack box a few years ago, but they did not cancel. right now – Mastercard could help. For all the rest, you could be alone.