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IP: AMEX just says 'no' to porn sites
From: Dave Farber <farber () cis upenn edu>
Date: Sat, 27 May 2000 09:32:10 -0400

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Date: Fri, 26 May 2000 19:07:16 -0400
To: farber () central cis upenn edu (David Farber)
From: Jean Armour Polly <mom () netmom com>
Subject:  AMEX just says 'no' to porn sites


Friday May 26 06:15 PM EDT

 AMEX just says 'no' to porn sites

 By Margaret Kane, ZDNet News

 You're our of luck if you want to use American Express plastic on an 
adult Web site.

 Don't worry if you've left cyberhome without your American Express card 
when you head to that adult Web site.

 Since May 1, American Express has been rolling out a new policy: It will 
no longer cover transactions from adult Web sites. American Express 
spokeswoman Joanne Fisher said the credit card company has just begun the 
process of notifying their merchant clients of the decision.

"The decision was ... based on about a year's worth of work we've done 
with this industry," Fisher said. "There was an unacceptably high level of 
customer disputes. We worked with the industry, but the challenges 
remained, and we just decided it was no longer profitable or practical to 
work with this industry."

 'Some of the Web masters are really upset. They feel they're going to 
lose a significant amount of money'|Tom Fisher, CCBill Tom Fisher, 
general manager for credit card processing firm CCBill, said he had 
received a notice from AMEX earlier this week notifying them of the new policy.

He said American Express accounts for a small percentage of his business, 
but "certainly any loss of business has an impact on any of the Internet 
companies. "I understand some of the Web masters are really upset. They 
feel they're going to lose a significant amount of money," he said.

 Disputed charges

Disputed charges are common both online and offline, but some have argued 
that they occur more frequently with adult Web sites.

 For instance, a parent may dispute a charge rung up by a teen who was 
not supposed to have access to the card. Other problems occur when the 
user who actually went to the site is faced with, and embarrassed by, his 
or her bill.

 Fisher said his company has not noticed any excessive problems with 
adult sites, however.

"American Express has chosen to deal with the industry in total rather 
than on an individual basis," he said. Officials for Visa and MasterCard 
could not reached for comment.

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